Fast-food companies offer veggie burgers on their menus. How hard can it be to make a good one?
Really difficult, as a matter of fact. I’ve been trying recipes for over a year in the search for a decent DIY veggie burger that doesn’t involved super-processed ingredients. This week, we tried a new recipe that 3 out of 4 Hippie Family members would eat. The Hippie Husband and I both rather enjoyed these, and Little Hippie declared them to be “better than okay.”
The recipe comes from The “Whole Foods Market Cookbook: A Guide to Natural Foods with 350 Recipes.” Unlike most of the other veggie burgers we’ve tried, this one is made mostly of oatmeal. The end result was flavorful and satisfying, though a little soft. Next time, I will leave them in the oven a little longer to crisp up. I’m also going to experiment with using steel-cut oats instead of rolled (old-fashioned) to see whether that gives us a bit more texture.
The search for the perfect veggie burger continues, but this vegan offering is a pretty good one to sustain us while we are looking.
- 2.25 cups old-fashioned (rolled) oats, + extra for sprinkling
- 2.25 cups water
- 1/4 cup tamari (this sauce can be found in Asian grocery stores if you can’t find it at your local shop. If you are in the Fox Valley, I know that they carry it at Woodman’s)
- 1/8 cup olive oil
- 1 teaspoon canola oil
- 1 onion, finely diced
- 1 large carrot, grated
- 1 red bell pepper, finely diced
- 1 clove of garlic, crushed
- 1/2 tsp. dried basil (or 1/2 Tablespoon fresh)
- 1/2 tsp. dried oregano (or 1/2 Tablespoon fresh(
- Vegetable oil for spraying burgers
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking pan with parchment paper.
- In a medium saucepan, bring the oats, water, tamari and olive oil to a boil; reduce heat to low and simmer for 12 minutes, stirring frequently until a thick mixture forms. It will look kind of gross. Don’t worry about it. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
- Saute the onion, pepper and spices in canola oil over medium heat until soft, then add garlic and carrot. Cook an additional minute or two, then fold the veggie mix into the oat mixture. Allow mixture to cool.
- Form into 6 burgers about 1-inch thick and place on the pan lined with parchment. Flatten the tops slightly with a spatula.
- Sprinkle each burger with about 1 tsp. raw oats. Spray the burgers with a little oil.
- Bake for 25 minutes, until golden brown.
Source: “Feel Your Oats” Burgers, The Whole Foods Market Cookbook, Copyright 2002
Note: This is half of the original recipe, which the cookbook suggests for making eight burgers. I cut the recipe in half because it was just a test run, and I ended up getting six burgers from the half batch.