Homemade Veggie Burgers + The Works

Like every other New Yorker these days, I am always on a quest for the best burger. While I eschew meat most of the time (have you caught on yet?), I have found some pretty darn good burgers of the veggie variety. Two of my favorites? Westville in Manhattan and Downtown Bar & Grill in Brooklyn. Even my carnivorous friends like ‘ em, and that’s usually a good sign.

I’ve attempted to make veggie burgers in the past, and they usually end up crumbling apart. Thanks to breadcrumbs, eggs and gooey sesame tahini, these held their shape fairly well.

These burgers make a good canvas to all sorts of toppings. I sandwiched mine between those new deli-flat rolls and jazzed it up with munster cheese, avocado, lettuce, tomato, and honey mustard.

Quick tip: it’s really important to make sure your skillet is heated before cooking the burgers. You need the oil to be thoroughly heated to get that crisp exterior. Do NOT use olive oil this recipe or you will risk burning – canola or vegetable oil works great.

Homemade Veggie Burgers

Makes 4-6 burgers


  • 1/2 cup bulgur
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 1 can (14 1/2 ounces) pinto beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/4 cup plain dried whole wheat breadcrumbs
  • 4 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large carrot, coarsely grated
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons tahini (sesame-seed paste)
  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • Whole grain rolls, lightly toasted (I like deli-flats)
  • Topping suggestions: lettuce, tomato, avocado, cheese, red onion, your favorite dressing, sauce or spread


  1. In a medium bowl, mix bulgur with 1/4 teaspoon coarse salt and 1 cup boiling water. Cover bowl, and let sit until bulgur is tender (but still slightly chewy), about 15 minutes. Drain in a fine-mesh sieve, pressing to remove liquid.
  2. Place beans in a medium bowl; mash with a potato masher until a coarse paste forms. Add breadcrumbs, scallions, egg, carrot, cayenne, cumin, tahini, and bulgur. Season with salt and pepper, and mix to combine.
  3. Form mixture into 4-6 patties, each about 1 inch thick.
  4. In a large skillet, heat oil over medium-low. Cook patties until browned and firm, 5 to 8 minutes per side. Serve on whole grain rolls with your choice of toppings.

– Source: Everyday Food


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