A few weeks ago on my Facebook page, I mentioned that I threw together some amazing veggie burgers for dinner one night on a whim. I told folks that I’d be happy to make them again if they’d like the recipe. And the answer was a resounding YES!
So to the kitchen I went to remake the burgers and get some good photos. I tweaked a few tiny things and they turned out even better the second time.
What I love about these veggie burgers is that they’re actually made with—get this!—veggies. I know, shocker. But seriously, most veggie burgers in the store are made with anything but vegetables. Just take a look at the ingredients I jotted down from a veggie burger I spotted in the store the other day:
Textured vegetable protein (soy protein concentrate, wheat gluten, water for hydration), corn oil, egg whites, calcium caseinate, contains two percent or less of modified tapioca starch, onion powder, mixed triglycerides, canola oil, hydrolized vegetable protein (corn gluten, wheat gluten, soy protein), dextrose, soy protein isolate, natural and artificial flavors, salt, yeast extract, sugar, caramel color, whey, methylcellulose, spice, garlic powder, maltodextrin, disodium inosinate, disodium guanylate, soy sauce (water, soybeans, salt, ethyl alcohol, wheat), autolyzed yeast extract, ascorbic acid, thiamin hydrochloride (vitamin B1), niacinimide, sesame seed oil, soy lecithin…
…AND THAT WASN’T EVEN EVERYTHING!
Forgive the all caps—I try not to yell at you very often—but seriously. Where are the vegetables in these “veggie burgers”?!
Care for a little disodium guanylate with your lettuce and tomato? How about a little whey and autolyzed yeast extract with that side of sweet potato fries?
In contrast, here are the ingredients in my veggie burgers:
Cauliflower, onions, celery, carrots, sweet potatoes, garlic, almond flour (or ground nuts or seeds), extra-virgin olive oil, flaxseed, cumin, poultry seasoning, sea salt, black pepper, eggs.
That’s it. And there’s even an option to make them egg-free. True, my burgers don’t have as much protein as the packaged kind, but 14 ingredients compared to 36-plus? I think I’ll take the homemade version and have a little more protein at my next meal, thank you very much.
Seriously, folks. When are we going to wake up and realize that the stuff marketed to us as “health food” is actually nothing more than the result of a science experiment and a whole lot of tinkering around in a lab? You want health food? Start in the produce department, or better yet, the farmers’ market. Cook from scratch. Eat REAL food, stuff that you can pronounce or that you can imagine growing in nature.
I read this article last week and was reminded again just how much work there is to be done in this country in regards to reclaiming our health. I often throw my hands up and sigh, feeling like there’s not much I can do to bring about positive change in our world of food terrorism. This is precisely how I was feeling when I asked the Facebook community if they’d like the recipe for these burgers.
Well, 70 “likes” and 32 comments later, I realized that there are a lot more people out there like me who get fed up with the food system and want to clear the clutter from their cooking, too. And if giving people a super healthy veggie burger recipe on my little blog is going to take them one step closer to optimal health (and one step further away from the frozen food aisle…), then I’m in.
So here you go. A veggie burger made with veggies. Revolutionary to many of us, perhaps, but hopefully not for long.
Grab that apron, head to the kitchen, and get cooking. I’ve seen a quote flying around Facebook and Pinterest quite a lot lately, and maybe you’ve seen it, too. It goes something like this:
“You are what you eat, so don’t be fast, cheap, easy, or fake.”
Can I get an amen?
By the way, it’s almost May, so that means it’s time for a new Daily Bites Motivational Calendar. Click HERE to download the free PDF. Have a great start to the new month!
- 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
- ½ medium head cauliflower, cored and chopped small (about 3 cups chopped)
- ½ medium yellow onion, chopped small (about ¾ cup chopped)
- 1 medium celery stalk, peeled and chopped
- 1 medium carrot, peeled and chopped
- 1 medium sweet potato, peeled and shredded (about 1-1/2 cups shredded)
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled and chopped
- ½ cup (packed) blanched almond flour, or any ½ cup (packed) any ground nut/seed
- 2 tablespoons ground flaxseed
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- ½ teaspoon poultry seasoning
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 large egg (see note below for egg-free/vegan)
- Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the cauliflower, onion, celery, and carrot. Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes. Add the grated sweet potato and garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 4-5 minutes. Remove from heat. Transfer the vegetables to a food processor fitted with the steel blade and allow to cool for 10-15 minutes.
- Add the almond flour, flaxseed, cumin, poultry seasoning, salt, and pepper to the vegetables. Pulse just to combine. (You still want the vegetables to have some texture, so don't completely turn them into paste.) Add the egg and pulse just to combine.
- Use your hands to form the mixture into 6 "burger" patties. The mixture will be somewhat wet, so don't be alarmed if it seems really moist. Place the patties on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Refrigerate or freeze while you preheat the oven to 400ºF.
- When the oven is preheated, place the pan in the oven and bake the burgers for 10 minutes. Carefully flip them over and continue baking for another 15 minutes. Let the burgers rest for at least 5 minutes before serving.
- Serve with your desired toppings.