A great veggie burger has to pass muster on a good deal of levels. I’m happy to say I think this Lentil Brown Rice Burger does just that.
Burgers need to be hearty and “meaty” with plenty of strong bracing flavor. Many veggie burgers are more of the mushy variety which tend to disintegrate or fall apart in the bun, very disappointing! The Lentil Brown Rice Burger works so well because it has “layers” of flavor and a good strong texture which won’t flake on you.
Using a legume in the burger adds protein, flavor and structure. I find Le Puy Lentils work particularly well and recommend them highly. They’re a little more dense that other lentils and offer a “bite” that you won’t find in the red, yellow or green varieties.
How do I get “layered” flavor.
You want these burgers to be literally mouth watering. To achieve that I’ve added layers of flavor from:
- caramelized red onions
- plenty of garlic
- balsamic vinegar
- sun dried tomatoes
- Dijon mustard
- nutritional yeast
- fresh herbs
- sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- fried onions rings for topping
What’s the structure of a good veggie burger?
- For the foundation you need a starch: in this case I used rice.
- A legume: Le Puy Lentils work particularly well (see above).
- Flavors: as discussed.
- Texture: the rice, lentils, mushrooms, sun dried tomatoes, blitzed oats and toasted pumpkin seeds provide tremendous texture.
- Greens: I used parsley.
- Toppings: onion rings add some decadence, but feel free to stick with tomato, lettuce, raw red onion, avocado or just a friendly dollop of tomato ketchup. Vegan Mayonnaise is also great with these.
How do I make the Burgers?
There are quite a few steps to this but if you plan ahead or batch cook it’s easier. Try cooking plenty of rice and lentils ahead of time. They’re the foundation of many dishes so having extra in the fridge just makes life easier.
- Caramelize the onions and add the garlic and balsamic vinegar.
- Combine the rice, lentils, sun dried tomatoes, Nutritional Yeast, Dijon mustard, tamari, salt and olive oil.
- Blitz the oats and toasted pumpkin seeds in a food processor and add to the rice mixture.
- Saute the mushrooms, sprinkle over the tamari, add to the rice mixture.
- Add the salt, pepper, ground cumin and fresh parsley, combine well.
- Make into patties and place on a baking tray lined with parchment paper.
- Brush the burgers with olive oil, bake for 20 minutes, remove from the oven, carefully flip over and bake for a further 10-15 minutes. Remove from the oven and enjoy. Alternatively you can fry the burgers in a pan with a little butter and olive oil:)
Lentil Brown Rice Burger
A hearty, flavorful protein packed veggie burger.
- Prep Time: 40 minutes
- Cook Time: 50 minutes
- Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
- Yield: 10 burgers 1x
- Category: burgers,
2 medium – large red onions, peeled and diced
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 1/2 cups cooked brown rice
1 cup cooked Le Puy Lentils
1/2 cup sun dried tomatoes, drained of any oil and roughly chopped
1/3 cup Nutritional Yeast
1 1/2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon tamari
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 cup oats
1/4 cup toasted pumpkin seeds
1 teaspoons sea salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 heaped teaspoon ground cumin
8 oz mushrooms, large dice (button, white, cremini – or your favorite)
1 tablespoon tamari
1/2 cup finely chopped fresh parsley
For the onion rings:
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 heaping tablespoon non dairy butter
2 medium onions, peeled and cut into rounds
A sprinkling of sea salt
Heat the oven to 350F.
Line a baking tray with parchment paper.
- Heat the 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large pan, add the diced red onion. Sprinkle over 1/2 a teaspoon of kosher salt and cook on a low heat, stirring occasionally until deeply caramelized. Be patient this can take 25 – 30 minutes. You will find they will cook down and reduce in volume.
- Add the minced garlic and balsamic vinegar and cook for a further 3-4 minutes.
- Place the cooked rice and lentils in a large bowl, add the sun dried tomatoes, nutritional yeast, Dijon mustard, tamari and olive oil. Stir well to combine.
- In the bowl of a food processor blitz the oats and toasted pumpkin seeds. Add to the rice mixture along with the sea salt, freshly ground black pepper and cumin.
- Heat a tablespoon of non dairy butter or olive oil in a large pan until hot, add the mushrooms and saute until they release their juices, cook a minute more and add the tablespoon of tamari.
- Place the mushrooms in the bowl with the rice mixture, add the chopped parsley and combine into patties.
- You can refrigerate the patties (covered in plastic wrap) until you’re ready to cook them (overnight if necessary).
- When ready to cook brush them with olive oil and place in the oven for 20 minutes, remove from the oven, carefully flip over and bake for a further 10-15 minutes. (ALTERNATIVELY YOU CAN FRY THE BURGERS IN BATCHES WITH A LITTLE OLIVE OIL AND NON DAIRY BUTTER.)
- While the burgers are cooking make the onion rings. Heat the olive oil and butter in a large pan until foaming, place the onion rings in the hot oil, cook on medium heat for 3-4 minutes being careful not to burn them.
- Flip them over and cook for a further 3-4 minutes. Remove from heat and sprinkle over a little sea salt.
- Top the burgers with the onion rings, place in a toasted burger bun and add any other fixings you desire.
Keywords: vegan, burgers, veggie burger,
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