As a lifelong vegetarian, I know the struggle with veggie burgers inside and out. Frozen store-bought patties are either cardboard, fried, or taste great but cause indigestion hours later. I have been making variations of these crunchy quinoa polenta veggie burgers for years now, and they are great for many reasons.
- The polenta adds such a beautiful texture.
- Veggies; you can use whatever veggies you have on hand, simply dice and sauté. Onion and carrots are my go to, only because I always seem to have them around, but I’ve used sweet peas, zucchini, bell peppers, yellow squash, and even chopped spinach before with amazing results.
- Beans; you can use whatever beans you want, chickpeas, black beans, mixed beans, white beans, the list goes on.
- No measuring needed; maybe the first time you’ll want to measure the ingredients for peace of mind, but basically you just need relatively equal amounts of the polenta, quinoa, and veggies, a can of beans and you’re good to go. If you’re a little bean-heavy or veggie heavy, they still work!
I was a bit of an over-achiever this week and made my own burger buns for these crunchy quinoa veggie burgers; I admit, mainly for photos, because these patties are super tasty on their own. I typically eat them with a giant side salad, top with poached eggs, or grab a couple to eat plain as I’m running out the door for traffic snacks (LA life, am I right?).
Crunchy Quinoa Polenta Veggie Burgers
Yields 9 slider-size patties
1 15oz can of beans- of your choice
1 c. Quinoa- cooked
1 c. Polenta
2 T. Olive oil + more for cooking the patties
1 t. Mustard
1/2 t. Salt
1/2 t. Garlic powder
1/2 t. Onion powder
1/2 t. Pepper
1/2 t. Dried oregano
1/2 t. Sriracha sauce
1. Dice the onion and sauté over medium heat. Grate the carrots and add to the onions. Cook until the onions are translucent and the carrots are soft.
2. Rinse and drain the beans. In a large mixing bowl, add in the beans, polenta, cooked quinoa, and veggies. On top, add the egg and remaining ingredients. This is the fun part; with your hands, squish together the mixture until the beans are partially broken up and everything is well incorporated. It feels really good.
3. Form small patties, about half an inch thick, and cook over medium heat in an oiled sauté pan for about three minutes per side. Fit as many patties into the pan as you can without them touching. Add more olive oil between batches, just enough to coat the bottom of the pan. Serve warm or at room temperature with your favorite burger toppings.