This recipe is a close adaptation of Martha Rose Shulman’s recipe for the New York Times. I actually had the pleasure of meeting her last week (#starstruck), because she’s moderating a panel at an upcoming conference that my company is hosting. Our lunch meeting was catered by SweetGreen, so basically it was an all-around perfect day.
In my version of the recipe, I decided to lighten things up a little bit and bake the patties, rather than coating in breadcrumbs and pan frying them. Shulman recommends serving the patties with raita, chutney, or a garlic mint yogurt sauce, but I went classic veggie burger style, and served them up on toasted whole wheat buns with avocado slices and fresh spinach.
My only previous attempt at veggie burgers was an awesome black bean burger recipe (with avocado mango salsa, might I add), so this was a totally different experience. But a delicious one, at that. The feta and chives really give these veggie patties a flavorful kick, and the lentils and quinoa provide that ever-important protein.
My boyfriend was actually licking the bowl at this point. I’m telling you, these veggie burgers are GOOD!
Mediterranean Veggie Burgers with Sweet Potatoes, Red Lentils, and Quinoa
- 1/3 cup quinoa
- 2/3 cup red lentils
- 2 1/3 cups water
- 2 medium sweet potatoes, baked (I just poked holes and microwaved them, about 4 minutes on each side)
- 3 cups tightly packed, chopped fresh spinach, plus more for garnish
- 3 oz crumbled feta (about ¾ cup)
- ¼ cup finely chopped chives
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
- 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 8 whole-wheat hamburger buns, toasted (I like this brand)
- 2 avocados, sliced
- Combine water, quinoa, and lentils in a small pot and bring to a boil. Then cover and reduce to a simmer, until the outside germ of the quinoa separates into a curly tail, the lentils are tender, and the water has been absorbed (about 15-20 minutes).
- While the lentils and quinoa are cooking, skin the potatoes and place them in a large mixing bowl. Then add the spinach, feta, chives, mint, and lemon juice to the sweet potatoes.
- Once the lentil and quinoa mixture is cooked, let cool, then add it to the sweet potato mixture. Mash all ingredients together with a fork until mixed well.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Scoop ½ cup of the vegetable mixture, then roll and flatten into a patty. Continue with the rest of the mixture. Recipe makes 8 patties.
- Let patties refrigerate for at least an hour- the longer the better. (They can also be made up to two days ahead of time. In fact, they actually turn out better this way, as they have more time to set.)
- Bake at 350 degrees F for 25 minutes (no need to flip).
- Serve on a toasted whole grain bun with fresh spinach and sliced avocado.
Nutrition per serving (1 patty on a 100% whole wheat bun with 1/6 avocado): 300 calories, 6.5 g fat (3g saturated fat), 46g carbohydrates (8.5g fiber, 8.5g sugar), 12g protein, 460mg sodium, 500mg potassium, 228% Vitamin A, 33% Vitamin C, 20% Calcium, 28% iron
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