I’m a meat eater, no ifs, ands or buts, about it…but I LOVE me a good black bean burger. There’s something so satisfying about the crunchy outside, and the mushy inside of the perfect black bean burger. This is one of those recipes that’s fully customizable based on what you have laying around your kitchen, and based on your personal preferences.
This recipe is pretty simple when you break it down. All we’re doing is making a big ‘ole batch of bean mush and forming it into patties. Drying out the beans, sauteeing the veggies, and combining with our raw ingredients and a binder before letting them rest in the fridge for a couple of hours. Nothing fancy here, and the bonus that if you double up the recipe these freeze REALLY well, and you’ll have black bean burgers on demand whenever you want them.
There are just a couple of basic ingredients that need to be involved.
This is kind of obviously the most critical component of the recipe. For years I struggled to figure out why my burgers were too mushy, they were hard to cook right and often fell apart in the pan…no longer thanks to this tip. Dry out the beans by sticking them in the oven for 15 minutes. It’s so easy, just line a baking sheet with foil and back them at 350 for 15 minutes. This causes the beans to dry out, so that when we add in a binder later the mixture isn’t too runny and goopy.
Regardless of the kind of beans you’re using or the extra ingredients you pop in to your mix, you’re going to need a binder to bring everything together, and to stop the burgers from falling apart while they’re cooking. This recipe uses egg and bread crumbs. Instead of the egg you could use BBQ sauce or mustard, just keep in mind that the flavor from those sauces will overwhelm the bean mix (not a terrible thing if you want BBQ black bean burgers).
The beans and the binder are the foundation of this recipe, but they’re just the very very basics of what we can do with this recipe. I used onion, poblano pepper, Buffalo flavored cheese, and scallions to up the flavor of these burgers. You could just as easily use zucchini, sweet potatoes, sun dried tomatoes, or any other of your favorite flavors. The key is to make sure those ingredients are cooked before adding them to the mix, since the burgers cook up pretty quick once they’re formed and cooled.
There’s a necessary step before cooking up the burgers, and that’s to let them rest for a couple hours (or overnight if you want to make them the day before). This gives the bread crumbs time to soak up some of the moisture, and gives the bean patties time to solidify. If you don’t let the burgers rest they’ll be almost impossible to cook up properly, and they’ll most likely fall apart (trust me, at least they’ll still taste good!). I cook these up in a cast iron skillet, but you can use any thicker bottomed pan or a non stick, just get a little canola/veggie/peanut/corn oil in the pan first, and get it hot before you add in the burgers. There’s a trick here to NOT touch the burgers for at least 3 minutes while they’re in the pan, if you do you’ll get more sticking and that makes getting them out of the pan in one piece much much more difficult.
Go Forth and Prosper
Serve them up with some salad and sweet potato fries. Toss them on a bun with some mustard, onion, and pickles. Freeze them for a rainy day. These Black Bean Burgers are yours to make your own, enjoy….and YumSizzle!
Black Bean Burgers