Black Bean and Quinoa Veggie Burgers

November  5, 2012
19 Ratings
Photo by James Ransom
  • Prep time 12 hours 15 minutes
  • Cook time 50 minutes
  • Makes 6-8 burgers
Author Notes

I created this burger for my vegetarian friends who are always asking me for hearty, meat-free dishes that can satisfy a serious hunger craving. The patties are made with nutritious black beans, oats, and protein-packed quinoa. To infuse them with lots of flavor, I add chipotles in adobo and other southwestern spices. Store any leftover patties in the freezer so you can enjoy a delicious and healthy vegetarian meal any night of the week.

Sandwich fan? Tune into our podcast, The Sandwich Universe, where co-hosts and longtime BFFs Molly Baz and Declan Bond debate and cook up iconic sandwiches every ‘wich way.Sonali aka the Foodie Physician

Test Kitchen Notes

These burgers were surprising and delicious. Most of the ingredients were already in my pantry or freezer and other than the couple hours of required chilling, they came together in about 20 minutes. I chose to pan fry them, and thanks to the quinoa, the exterior was so pleasantly crunchy that I'd make them smaller next time to be able to enjoy more crunch. We served ours on a pile of lettuce with tomato, avocado, and the sauce on the side. I doubled the dijon in the sauce as I thought it needed a little acid, but otherwise these were great. —savorthis

What You'll Need
  • Patties
  • 1/2 cup quinoa
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1 small red onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pinch Kosher salt
  • 2 cans (15.5 ounces each) black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 large egg
  • 2/3 cup cooked corn (fresh or canned)
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon minced chipotles in adobo
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 cup rolled oats, ground into crumbs
  • Yogurt Sauce
  • 1/2 cup fat-free Greek yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon minced chipotles in adobo
  • 1/2 teaspoon adobo sauce
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 6 multigrain hamburger rolls
  • 1 handful Lettuce, avocado slices, and tomatoes, for topping (optional)
  1. Place the quinoa in a small saucepan along with 1 cup of water. Bring the water to a boil then reduce heat to medium low and cover the pan. Cook 10 to 15 minutes until the water is absorbed and quinoa is cooked. Remove from heat.
  2. Heat the oil in a small sauté pan over medium heat and add the onion and garlic. Season them with a pinch of salt and sauté until onions are softened, 5 to 6 minutes. Place the mixture into a large bowl. Add approximately 1 1/2 cans of black beans to the bowl and, using a potato masher or fork, mash all of the ingredients together until a pasty mixture forms. Stir in the remaining beans along with the tomato paste, egg, corn, cilantro, chipotles, cumin, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Stir in the cooked quinoa and ground oats until evenly distributed.
  3. Form the mixture into 6 equal patties, compacting them well with your hands as you form them. Place the patties on a baking sheet, cover them with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least a few hours or overnight.
  4. To make the yogurt sauce, stir the yogurt, chipotles, adobo sauce, honey, and mustard together in a small bowl.
  5. When ready to eat, preheat the oven to 400° F. Spray a baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray and place the patties on the sheet. Cook 10 to 12 minutes, until the patties are golden brown and crispy, then carefully flip them over and cook another 10 minutes. You can also fry the patties in a pan with a small amount of oil. Serve patties on the buns with the yogurt sauce and toppings of your choice.
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60 Reviews

Danielle R. April 24, 2020
I'm making these tonight :) Thank you so much! They are formed into patties and resting in the fridge right now!! I didn't have any chipotles so I marinated finely chopped bell pepper in hot sauce (I know, but it's all I could think of) I also didn't have tomato paste so I added flour to some tomato puree... Hopefully they are such minor changes that it doesn't affect the final product *too much* lol, I will let you know what happens!!
Danielle R. April 24, 2020
I'm making these tonight :) Thank you so much! They are formed into patties and resting in the fridge right now!! I didn't have any chipotles so I marinated finely chopped bell pepper in hot sauce (I know, but it's all I could think of) I also didn't have tomato paste so I added flour to some tomato puree... Hopefully they are such minor changes that it doesn't affect the final product *too much* lol, I will let you know what happens!!
Amaya June 4, 2019
Can these be grilled? I would love to have these for a BBQ party.
Sonali A. June 19, 2019
Yes they can be grilled but make sure you refrigerate them ahead of time so that they don’t fall apart on the grill.
Kaya April 9, 2019
I can wait to try this recipe it looks amazing. two of my favortie things!
Kate April 8, 2019
Well, I thought it was pretty good. I liked the flavoring with the adobo sauce plus I added some lime juice and smoked paprika as I saw in some other reviews. I liked the corn and the quinoa. The yogurt sauce was quite tasty, too, and I had to make more of that for the leftovers tonight. We had zucchini fries with the burgers and used the sauce for dipping as well. However, my teen son hated the burger. Refused to eat it. In his endearing teenage way I think I was blamed for the actual recipe. I just assumed he could not reconcile this as being a, "burger". As I ate it again tonight - in peace, by myself - I realized there was a pasty consistency coming through. I think it's the oatmeal. The reason I was tolerating it was because of the corn and quinoa. I'm sure if I ask him he will say this is probably why he didn't like it. Because of that I'm going to try a different recipe for black bean quinoa burgers and see if I can eliminate that texture. Adding the sauce, pickled onions/radishes and arugula, I believe, kind of hid it from me. He's not very adventurous so all he had on his was the sauce. In that case the texture was much more pronounced. The flavor was good, though, but I'll keep experimenting with this idea.
Rita W. August 12, 2018
For those who find these missing something... I have been making these for several years with a few modifications. Firstly I add a table spoon (or more) of homemade Adobo Seasoning (can find on the Internet, I use Tracy’s) and I divide it into twelve burgers. I do this by forming a round mound in the bowl, cutting in quarters and then further cutting each quarter into three. I bake them at 350 on parchment for 20 mins, flip and bake for an additional 20. When they are cool I freeze and we eat as a main or in a bun (best served with a thin bun, toasted and lots of condiments)
S. T. July 30, 2018
I made these tonight for dinner. As a vegetarian I ear a lot of “housemade” veggie burgers from local restaurants. I’ve been trying to find something to make at home that compares. Let me start by saying my meat eating partner thought the texture of these was comparable to a real burger. But the flavor was no where near as good as the local restaurants have come up with. I don’t know what’s missing, but I’m going to try and find out.
The I. May 24, 2017
We eat a lot of, and have tried many variations of, veggie burgers in our household. We have them at least 1-2 times per month. Given that we prefer a dense veggie burger with a nice chew that will also hold up to grilling I always add a bit of vital wheat gluten to the recipes and I did the same with this one....1/2 cup. The only other change I made for ease of prep was to had 1/2 tsp chipotle chile powder vs using the chopped chipotle chiles in adobo. As for the sauce, we love making burger sauces them out of vegan mayo so I replaced the yorgurt with this plus doubled the dijon and added some fresh squeezed lime juice for some extra brightness and tang. Delicious!
Shelley June 23, 2016
These were amazing! I did make a few tweaks, however. I need lots o flavor, so I added some chili powder (the chipotle wasn't enough--guess I couldn't just added more of that too) and the juice of one lime. Lime definitely brightened the flavor. Also, used oat bran instead of the ground oatmeal, mostly because I'm lazy and didn't want to blend the oatmeal! It made 8 large patties, some of which I froze. Also, I didn't refrigerate the patties before baking in the oven and they held together just fine. I'll definitely be making these again!
Mike A. March 31, 2016
Second time making these, I love them and I am not a vegan. Any suggestions on freezing? Should I cook them all first and then freeze? Should I freeze the formed patties, then defrost and cook? Any ideas?
Freddurf March 31, 2016
I form them into patties and freeze them uncooked in individual sandwich bags. When I'm ready, i defrost in the fridge and cook as directed.
Sonali A. April 1, 2016
Yes, I freeze the formed patties uncooked. Then defrost and cook as directed. You could probably also cook them in the oven straight from the freezer but would need to adjust the cooking time. So happy you like them!
Gal November 12, 2015
These veggie burgers were easy and a lot of fun to make! This is the first time I've ever made veggie burgers and they held together nicely and kept its shape. I too used smoked paprika instead of the chipotles in adobo.
I kept them refrigerated overnight covered with plastic wrap, and baked this morning. They turned out moist and delicious.
As mentioned in the recipe you can also fry the patties in a pan but then some oil will penetrate the food, adding calories and fat. Baking the patties worked out great for me.
I would also like to explore variations of this recipe with chickpeas and lentils instead of black beans but overall this is a wonderful recipe.
Sonali A. June 3, 2015
Thanks everyone for the positive comments! This recipe is actually the all-time most popular dish on my blog and I'm so happy to share it with everyone!
Chris June 2, 2015
I don't have any tomato paste and don't want to buy any since I'm moving out soon. Any subs? Or can I omit it altogether?
Sonali A. June 3, 2015
I use tomato paste to add flavor. You can probably leave it out or try substituting tomato sauce or ketchup. Both of these are thinner than tomato paste so I would use 1 tablespoon instead of 2. I hope you like it!
kschurms May 28, 2015
I left out the quinoa so that this would have slightly less calories, and it was delicious -- a little bit extra oats were plenty to keep the patties sticking together. The flavor was excellent, and the sauce is perfect!
Melanie March 5, 2015
Just the keeper I've been looking for! They came out perfectly flavorful (I added about a teaspoon of salt) with great texture. The quinoa and oats are a great base to change it up- chick peas+zucchini+cucumber dill yogurt=mediteranean. The only thing I changed was the yogurt sauce. I kicked it up with double chilies, adobo, lime, cilantro, cumin, salt and pepper. Thanks for a great recipe!
Luna H. August 27, 2014
Hi Elizabeth Mountain , sorry about the Diabetes diagnoses at least you know now and can take care of it. If you have. Netflix check it out a documentary called Forks over Knives. Excellent documentary and will give you lots of info how to really take care of your diabetes and really get control of it. They are in Facebook too. The recipes here are excellent and I use it too. Good luck.
Elizabeth M. August 27, 2014
Thanks Luna, I will check those out! :)
Elizabeth M. August 21, 2014
I am a newly diagnosed diabetic, type 2, and have only just begun to educate myself. This sounds like a great healthy recipe to start off with.
PublicRadioGal August 15, 2014
These are the best veggie burgers. I introduced them to a vegan friend and she loved them too! When we needed to stretch the mix for a crowd, we added some leftover forbidden rice. Great! The flaxseed egg replacement works just fine.
Carolina May 27, 2014
Spectacular. Just the best veggie burgers I've ever had.
kimberly.godwin May 14, 2014
I made this with black eyed peas as it was all I had in the pantry. I also substituted some cayenne pepper as was suggested by a previous review and replaced the corn (I don't like it. I know...weird.) with diced yellow bell pepper. I was in a hurry and only let them sit in the fridge for an hour and then baked them as described. I thought they came out delish and they held together just fine. I will say I halved the recipe (I only had one can of black eyed peas) and I got out six good sized patties out of it. Overall, a good veggie burger. Will def make again. Next time I will prepare ahead and get some black beans. :-)