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Veggie burgers to die for

So last week we discussed healthy burgers … I have created a monster in my house as we’re now getting requests every week!

Maybe it’s the freezing weather but my kids think it’s the ultimate comfort food! I’m happy to oblige but we’re rotating grass-fed beef and veggie burgers, just to be a little lighter on the planet. Red meat production is especially bad for the ozone layer – due entirely to the quantities of methane involved (that’s cow farts to you and me)! Given that cow farts aren’t especially appetising, I’m hoping this puts you in the mood for a veggie burger.

I did list a couple of brands last week that I think are pretty decent. However, I was asked almost immediately for a homemade recipe. This is one I’ve been working on for a while and I’m pretty sure it’s close to perfection now. If you made Chloe’s spicy noodles a few weeks ago, this is also a great opportunity to use that five-spice mix again now as it might otherwise will sit at the back of your cupboard for ever!

I based this recipe on a favourite from Oh She Glows (check out the books/blog if you haven’t yet heard of her as Angela Liddon is a plant-based genius). I used sunflower seeds instead of walnuts as the flavour goes down better with the kiddos (as in you can taste them less); feel free to make the switch back. I also replaced the barbecue sauce with tomato purée as I found the flavour to be amazing without the BBQ and this helps to reduce sugars. AND I combined two different types of beans because – if you’ve been reading this for a while now – you’ll know that combining different sources is the key to optimal amino acid absorption from plant-based proteins. If that sounded complicated, just trust me that it’s a good thing.

This recipe is a bit of a faff but it makes a large quantity that you can freeze for future use – always in a winner in my book. I always start with leftover roasted butternut squash as that removes a step from the process too. So, maybe roast a chicken and serve it with roasted butternut (and lots of green veggies) and then make these the next day. Forward thinking with leftovers will save you lots of time and money. (Use leftover roast chicken for my healthy chicken fried recipe another day.)

Hope you enjoy this recipe – I think they’re to die for!

Ingredients: (makes a dozen)

2 cups leftover roasted butternut squash (lightly packed)

½ tsp fine salt

1 cup sunflower seeds (raw, hulled)

2/3 cup onion, very finely chopped

6 large cloves garlic, minced

1 can black beans, rinsed and drained

1 can adzuki beans, rinsed and drained

2 tbsps five spice mix

¼ cup fresh parsley, finely chopped

1/3 cup tomato purée

1 cup breadcrumbs of your choice (eg wholewheat or gluten-free)

2 tbsps almond or brown rice flour)

Light olive oil for cooking


1. Preheat oven to 375F

2. Toast the sunflower seeds in a large skillet over a medium heat for five minutes until lightly golden; place in a large bowl to cool.

3. In the skillet, heat t tsp light olive oil over a medium heat. Add the onion/garlic and sauté for a few minutes until softened. Add to the sunflower seeds and stir to combine.

4. In a food processor, pulse the beans until the mixture is partly smooth and partly textured with whole beans. Add the beans to the bowl.

5. Add the roasted butternut squash to the bowl. Mash everything together lightly with a fork.

6. Add the five-spice mix, salt, parsley, tomato purée, breadcrumbs and flour to the bowl. Stir or kneed together. Adjust seasoning if necessary.

7. Scoop 1/3 cup dough and shape it into a patty. Repeat with the rest of the dough and place the patties on a greased baking sheet.

8. Bake for 15 minutes, flip and bake for ten minutes more.

9. Transfer to a cooling rack and allow them to “firm up” a little before using.

10. Serve by themselves with a large green salad and avocado, hummus and salsa for condiments. They do work well in a wholewheat or gluten-free bun too!

11. Spare burgers will keep in the fridge for two days or you can freeze them for 3 to 4 weeks in a Ziplock (press the spare air out of the bag before you zip it!) Enjoy!

Catherine Burns is a qualified nutritional therapist. For more details: www.natural.bm, 505-4725, Natural Nutrition Bermuda on Facebook and @naturalbda on Instagram

Catherine Burns promises her recipe will deliver a veggie burger ’to die for’

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Published March 19, 2021 at 8:00 am (Updated March 17, 2021 at 2:30 pm)

Veggie burgers to die for

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