Black Bean Burgers

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Cookout season has officially begun!  Hamburgers, hot dogs, bratwurst…an omnivore’s paradise.  Not so much for vegetarians, though.  They end up with a plate of macaroni salad and potato chips unless someone remembers the veggie burgers.

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I’m not a vegetarian myself, but I do tend to go for veggie burgers when they’re available.  The store-bought brands are usually full of unpronounceable ingredients, so I’ve tried several recipes over the last few years.  This one is by far my favorite.  It makes 12 good-sized burgers – enough for a cookout or to stock your freezer.  (I keep a bag of them tucked away for quick dinners.)

These patties aren’t sturdy enough for the grill, but that means they won’t be competing for grill space when you’re getting the burgers ready.  Pop them in the oven, and they’re ready to go in no time.  You can serve them on a bun with burger fixins, or (my preference) with a bit of sour cream and a slice of avocado.

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Black Bean Burgers 

Adapted from The Foodie Physician

1 box (4.9 oz) quinoa mix, prepared according to box directions (I prefer Near East’s roasted red pepper and basil quinoa-brown rice blend)
2 tsp. olive oil
1 red onion, chopped
6 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp. salt
2 15-oz cans black beans, drained and rinsed
4 tbsp. tomato paste
2 eggs
1 1/3 cups frozen corn
1 cup cilantro, chopped
2 chipotles in adobo, chopped (optional)
4 tsp. ground cumin
1 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup flour

1. Prepare the quinoa mix according to the box directions.  While the quinoa is cooking, heat the oil in a small pan over medium heat and add the onion and garlic.  Add the salt and saute until the onions are softened, about 7-8 minutes.

2. Place the onions in a large bowl, along with the black beans.  Using a potato masher or fork, mash together.  Stir in the tomato paste, eggs, corn, cilantro, chipotles, cumin, oats, and flour.  Mix thoroughly.

3. The mixture will be sticky, but form it into a dozen patties.  Place them on a greased baking sheet, and either refrigerate for a few hours or freeze them.

4. To cook burgers: Preheat the oven to 400 F.  Bake the patties for 11 minutes, then flip over and bake for another 11 minutes.  OR cook patties in a skillet over medium-high heat for about 6 minutes on each side, until golden.  Frozen burgers can be defrosted  individually, and then either baked or cooked in a skillet.