CHIPOTLE BLACK BEAN BURGERS | recipe

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Easy, satisfying, totally approachable. I love black bean burgers, a clear plant based staple in my book. Likely because I love just about anything slammed between two pieces of bread, but truly there's something so special about this one. I love the combination of traditionally southern flavors with basil and roasted red pepper which strike me as more European-esk. How many more times can I tell you what I love? Cheese sauce (but vegan, duh), I also love cheese sauce, and these are the perfect vehicle. They're hearty, loaded with protein and full of flavorful intrigue. I'm done selling you on this one, let me show you what I mean. 

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I like processing the ingredients together, but it's by no means necessary. I've seen vegetable patties mixed in a stand mixer, and by hand. Just chop the veg to the size of your liking because whatever goes in will be what you bite into and a patty with too much chunk has a higher risk of crumbling apart after cooking.

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The crown jewel of this recipe, in my opinion. The roasted red pepper really lends itself to the rest of the flavors going on here without being overpowering, surprisingly. The key is to let it steam until soft and floppy, otherwise you may windup with a little raw tasting bitterness. I took a really simple homemade route which I outline in the instructions but I fully support the use of jarred roasted red peppers as well. Same punch of flavor either way. 

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You'll really start to see the burger base come together after adding the breadcrumbs. Before doing this you may be thinking it's too wet, but be patient, it will only take a few swirls of your mixing spoon to get what's happening here. However if you still think your patties are going to just be mush, add more breadcrumbs!

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If you're curious what my toppings are (I know you are), I loaded this burger up with avocado salsa fresca and a cheese sauce made with shredded Daiya cheddar block, smoked paprika and a dash of plain almond milk mixed and melted down over a double boiler. But honestly, you can put just about anything on 'em. I've even crumbled one up over a Southwestern salad. Mwah! *Gently brings fingers and thumb together, raises to lips, kisses lightly, and joyfully tosses hand into the air* 

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CHIPOTLE BLACK BEAN BURGERS

Ingredients

2 cans black beans, washed and drained

1 whole red bell pepper, roasted

1/2 cup corn kernels

1/2 cup shredded carrot

1/2 cup green onion

1 cup basil

1 tsp onion powder

1 tsp garlic powder

1/2 tsp chipotle pepper powder

1/4 tsp cumin

1/2 tsp smoked paprika

1 1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp ground black pepper

2 tbs flour (any kind!)

2 cups breadcrumbs

Instructions

  1. First, roast your red pepper. I did this by holding the entire pepper over the lit burner on my gas stove. You can even rest the pepper on the grate because you'll want to char each side and this takes about 2-4 minutes per side. Once your pepper is nice and blackened, place a bowl or some aluminum foil over the pepper on a cutting board or plate and let the pepper steam for about 10 minutes. Remove as much of the blackened skin as you can with your fingers. Then cut out the stem and connected seeds and slice into quarters. You can buy pre-roasted red peppers but these tend to be really wet so if you decide to use them make sure you've patted them nice and dry with a towel prior to using them. 
  2. Load all the ingredients into a food processor, except for the breadcrumbs. Pulse on high until the mixture becomes almost a paste. It's up to you to decide how chunky you want your burgers. I've shown the consistency that I like.
  3. Transfer the burger paste to a large mixing bowl and add in the breadcrumbs. Stir by hand with a large spoon or spatula until the mixture is well combined, it should be difficult to mix and form a dense "dough".
  4. Using a 1/4 cup measure, portion out about 10 burger patties by rolling between your palms and flattening onto a lined baking tray. Now you have the option to either bake these babies at 350 for 7 minutes or you can fry/ pan sear them until they're browned on both sides. My personal preference is to pan sear them in a non-stick pan so they get a little crispy. Store your extra patties in the freezer for quick and easy meal prep xx