Black Bean & Raw Oat Burgers

All summer I’ve been working on perfecting a burger recipe. Not the most spellbinding of personal goals, but a goal nonetheless. I’ve played around with various ingredients and textures, and had some really interesting results, usually mushy in nature. But last night, I finally got it. The best part? I wasn’t even trying—just hungry and throwing things in the food processor.

I had had a really long day—I was up at 3:30 AM in order to volunteer at a local race. I’m the volunteer coordinator for a fundraiser 5k/10k/Kid’s Run. The event benefits a foundation that provides money for local schools as long as it is earmarked in a specific way. It’s my two favorite things smooshed together: running and education. I get to coordinate all the many volunteers that make the event possible. It’s a long, somewhat stressful weekend that always ends with tons of happy people and a big chunk of money for a great organization.

After the race I was totally beat, and spent the day in a cognitive haze. This is actually how I stumbled on the recipe below. I was playing around with some ingredients. One thing I’ve learned about vegan burgers is you need some sort of grain to tie them together—could be cooked brown rice, could be cooked quinoa, cooked oatmeal, etc. So I was sort of on the right track when I dumped a bunch of uncooked oats into the food processor. After they were already in I had the “Oh…wait. I usually cook those first” moment. But it was too late. I was confident I’d made and eaten worse, so I figured I’d see what would happen. The answer? A really phenomenal texture and density that I’d been looking for for ages. Genius strikes in unusual places!

What you’ll need:

  • 1 hot pepper

  • ¼ cup yellow onion

  • ½ cup fresh tomato

  • 1 cup cauliflower

  • 1 ½ cups black beans (these do need to be rehydrated…luckily I didn’t make that mistake)

  • ½ cup raw oats

  • 2 tablespoons parsley

  • 2 garlic cloves

  • ¼ cup water

  • Salt to taste (I used about a tablespoon)

What you’ll need:

  1. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees

  2. Roughly chop all your ingredients except the water and place in a food processor

  3. Once the mixture is to your liking, add the water and spin quickly until it is combined

  4. Scoop out patty-shaped spoonfuls and put on a baking sheet (I got 7 decent sized burgers)

  5. I let my patties sit for about 20 minutes before putting them in the oven to let the oats soak up some liquid. No idea if this made a difference or not—would love to hear your thoughts!

  6. Put in the oven for 30 minutes, flipping once

I served these over spinach with homemade mustard and hummus. Let me know what serving suggestions you come up with!


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