Quinoa Veggie Burgers

Making your own veggie burgers is much better than buying store-bought for a few reasons:

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  1. Store bought veggie burgers often contain soy which is guaranteed to be GMO unless it specifies organic.
  2. Most contain hidden forms of MSG (monosodium glutamate) which is a processed food additive. MSG is a neurotoxin which can cross the blood brain barrier. It literally excites brain cells to the point of firing uncontrollably essentially causing cell death. Scary stuff, huh?! It has been linked to migraines, seizures, heart palpitations and many other symptoms people experience after consuming products containing MSG. You would think avoiding it would be easy, but it can hide behind 40 different names. EEK! Here are a few: Glutamic Acid, Glutamate, Yeast Extract, anything "hydrolyzed", any "hydrolyzed protein", Autolyzed Yeast and Textured Protein.  
  3. They are so incredibly processed that they lack any real nutritional value. Have you ever looked at the ingredients list? It reads like a novel (red flag) and most of the words are difficult to pronounce (sirens should be sounding at this point!) Remember: If you can't pronounce an ingredient, chances are you won't be able to easily digest it. 
  4. The sodium content is often through the roof. Most of us get way too much sodium as is through packaged, processed and convenience foods.
Not only is making your own veggie burgers better for your health but they are so easy to make and there are so many different varieties you can play around with.

Veggie burgers often find their way onto my weekly meal plans because they are convenient and versatile. I can make them for dinner and there's plenty of leftovers for lunches the next day. Not to mention, they're just as good at breakfast (without a bun) served with fried or scrambled farm fresh eggs - delicious!

Here is my latest creation:

Quinoa Veggie Burgers

Yields: 8-10 patties

1 can kidney beans, rinsed and drained

1 cup quinoa, dry

1/4 cup olive oil

2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon

1/2 yellow onion, fine dice

1 large carrot, grated

1 cup packed kale leaves, chopped

2 cloves of garlic, minced

1 tbsp gluten-free tamari

1 tsp each of the following spices: mustard powder, paprika, cumin powder, coriander powder and a pinch of cayenne pepper

Sea salt and pepper to taste

1/4 cup chickpea flour (you may need more if your patties seem too wet)

1 tsp baking powder

1 egg or chia egg equivalent (combine 1 tbsp ground chia seeds with 3 tbsp warm water. Stir and set aside for 5-10 minutes)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350. Prepare a parchment lined baking sheet and set aside.
  2. Combine quinoa with 1.5 cups of water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer and cover with a lid for approximately 15 minutes or until the water is absorbed. Set aside.
  3. Process beans with olive oil and lemon in a food processor. Set aside in a large mixing bowl.
  4. Stir vegetables, garlic and seasoning spices into the mixing bowl with the processed beans.
  5. Fold in cooked quinoa.
  6. Stir in flour, baking powder and egg/chia egg. Stir until fully combined.
  7. Taking about 1/4 cup of the mixture in your hands, form into patties and place on the baking sheet. Gently press down. Bake for 15 minutes. Flip them and bake for another 10 minutes or until golden brown.
  8. Alternatively, you can prepare a frying pan over medium heat with 1-2 tbsp olive or coconut oil and fry the patties 3-5 minutes per side or until golden brown.

I personally enjoy my veggies burgers without a bun. I use romaine hearts in place of bread and garnish the same way I would a traditional burger: Tomato, Dijon mustard, relish, etc.

These make plenty and work really well for lunch the next day. Serve them over a giant veggie salad or reheat and enjoy the exact same way:) I also really like them the next morning for breakfast with eggs and some sautΓ©ed greens. What a way to start the day!

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