Loaded with spices and mushrooms for texture, could someone really think these Southwestern Black Bean Burgers are made with ground meat?
Not for a minute. But they are absolutely delicious in their own right.
I saw the recipe in the June issue of Cooking Light and immediately knew I had to make them. I learned awhile ago that black beans are amazingly versatile. They can substitute for flour in the Black Bean Coconut Brownies or for ground beef in these burgers. And I love the extra boost of fiber they add to a recipe.
These mix up almost as fast as traditional beef burgers. Just toss the ingredients into the food processor and pulse together. Note that I did not say grind into a paste. You want to be light on the trigger here and only lightly pulse. You want bits of the beans and mushrooms to give these burgers a little texture. Otherwise it will be like you are eating bean dip. Delicious bean dip, but not exactly what we are going for here.
The original recipe called for an 11 ingredient tomatillo/chile pepper relish that I had no interest in going to the effort of making. A simple half of a canned chile that I blotted dry and charred a little with the onion was perfect for me. And I went with a little heartier four patties instead of the six they made. More calories than their version, but more filling too.
You can easily convert these to:
- gluten free – use gluten free bread crumbs and buns
- dairy free – omit the cheese or use a dairy free one.
- vegan – omit the cheese (or use a Vegan cheese) and an egg substitute such as arrowroot powder or potato starch to bind the ingredients together.
- unapologetic carnivore – use a pound of ground beef instead of the beans and mushrooms.
I encourage you to give them a try next time you want a meatless meal or are looking for something a little different. The entire recipe takes less than 30 minutes to prepare, so as an added bonus, it is weeknight fast. Gotta love that.
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Southwestern Black Bean Burger
- 4 Slices red onion approximately 1/2 inch thick
- 4 ounce cremini mushrooms washed
- 2 cloves garlic
- 15 ounce can of unsalted black beans drained and rinsed
- 1/2 cup whole wheat Panko breadcrumbs
- 1 tablespoon fresh oregano chopped
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon chipotle or ancho chile powder
- 1 large egg
- 2 ounse monterey jack cheese cut in to 4 slices
- 1 jar whole chiles drained and sliced in half if desired
- 4 hamburger buns
- Heat cast iron skillet over medium heat. Brush onion slices with a bit of olive oil and cook in skillet until slightly charred on both sides, about 3-4 minutes a side. Lightly toast buns in skillet or in toaster oven.
- While onions are cooking, combine mushrooms, garlic and black beans in the food processor and pulse until mixture is coarsely chopped. Do not pulverize! You want a little texture, not a paste.
- Add Panko, oregano, cumin, salt, chile powder and egg and pulse just until combined. Repeat: Do not pulverize! You want a little texture, not a paste. Shape into four 1/2 inch thick patties.
- Lightly oil the skillet and cook the patties approximately 12 minutes, turning once. Add cheese to the top of the burgers the last two minutes, cover the pan to assist melting.
- Place patty on toasted bun, top with onion slice and a half chile slice (or more if desired).
Until next time, happy eating.