Get ready for summer with this Moroccan vegan burger recipe! You only need 10 ingredients and 30 minutes to make this yummy dish. Perfect for those long, hot summer evenings when there are a million and one other things you'd rather be doing than being stuck in the kitchen making dinner.
I'm going to get this out of the way early - you can't grill these veggie burgers. So if you've got visions of standing by the barbecue on your lawn, flipping these burgers while everyone's sat at a nearby picnic table drooling, get it out your head right now. Not gonna happen. But these burgers only take 15 minutes in total to cook in the pan. That's just enough time for someone else to set up a table outside or lay out a blanket so you can pretend you're having a picnic when they're ready.
Having a picnic on your front lawn is totally acceptable, right? It's probably a good job I live in an apartment with a balcony no one can see so I don't have to find out the answer to that question myself.
What's in a vegan burger?
A vegan burger is a burger that's made without any meat or other animal products (i.e. cheese, milk or eggs). This Moroccan vegan burger recipe uses chickpeas and cauliflower as the base. Oats are a healthier, fibre-filled alternative to breadcrumbs to help keep the patties together. Flax seed is used instead of an egg for binding.
If you're familiar with vegan cooking or baking, know that you don't need to mess around making a flax egg for this recipe. Simply pop the flax seed into the food processor with all the rest of the ingredients and the natural moisture of the patty mix will help the flax do its job.
The rest of the ingredients - the seasonings and lemon juice - are there to give these burgers their delicious African-inspired kick.
How do you make veggie burgers that don't fall apart?
Egg, oil and breadcrumbs are the three ingredients normally used to make sure regular burgers don't fall apart. You can totally replace the 2 tablespoons of oats in this vegan burger recipe for 2 tablespoons of breadcrumbs if you like.
I always sub oats for breadcrumbs in burger recipes. Partly because they've got more fibre, but mostly because I rarely have breadcrumbs at home and can't be bothered to make my own. Even thought I've got a blog post dedicated to showing you how to make healthy Panko breadcrumbs.
You can also use oil to help bind your vegan burgers together. But I've never had much luck with oil. It's meant to help everything combine and stick. But I find that it just makes things wet and...well...oily.
Obviously, you can't use an egg in a vegan burger, so you have two alternatives - chia seeds or flax seeds. You can go to the trouble of making a chia seed egg or a flax seed egg if you're feeling super human. Or just toss the seeds into the food processor with everything else. Both ways work.
Tips to make veggie burgers that don't fall apart
Ingredients differ between brands and countries and not everyone will get the same results when making this recipe. If you've formed your vegan burger mix into patties and they keep falling apart, here are some tips to get them to stick together:
- Add sticky ingredients - tahini, nut butter, tomato paste, bbq sauce.
- Add starchy ingredients - breadcrumbs, oats, buckwheat, flour.
- Thoroughly dry main ingredients before combining. In the case of this vegan burger recipe, the main ingredients that will add the most moisture are the cauliflower (especially if you're using frozen) and chickpeas.
- Make the patties when you're ready to eat - don't make them and leave them in the fridge. They take on more moisture this way. If you need to chill them, chill the mix as a whole and then make individual patties.
- Pre-cook the patties in the oven for 15 minutes to help them firm-up before finishing them off in a pan for golden-brown sides.
Although the title of this post begins with "Turn up the heat", these Moroccan vegan burgers aren't actually that spicy. There's a tiny bit of cayenne pepper, but apart from that, the seasonings are just for flavour and not for spice. If you really want to turn up the heat, add an extra ¼ teaspoon of cayenne pepper or ¼ teaspoon of chilli powder.
I love my burgers with a little sweetness. I'd normally add honey, but since this is a vegan burger recipe that was a total no-go. You could add about 2 teaspoons of maple syrup into the mix to sweeten it up. (You might have to add another tablespoon of oats to make up for the added moisture.) But I'm not big on maple syrup, so I haven't tried this for myself.
Go forth and be adventurous!
Side dishes for this Moroccan vegan burger recipe
Baked zucchini fries are a healthy alternative to ordinary fries. I don't even like zucchini, yet I love these crispy sticks of awesomeness!
If you need some potatoes with your burgers, try this lightened up potato salad. Plain yoghurt replaces what would normally be mayonnaise and it's all seasoned with deliciousness.
Moroccan Vegan Burger Recipe
- 1 cup cauliflower florets
- ½ cup chickpeas cooked and drained
- 1 clove garlic
- ½ teaspoon ground paprika
- ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon flax seed
- 2 tablespoons oats
- ½ lemon juice only
- 2 hamburger buns
- Place all the ingredients (except the hamburger buns) into the bowl of a large food processor. Process on high for 2 minutes, until all the ingredients are totally broken down. You might have to scrape down the inside of the bowl with a spatula a few times to make sure everything gets thoroughly mixed together.
- Put a griddle pan over a medium heat. While the pan is warming, tip out the patty mixture onto a clean, flat surface and form into 2 evenly-sized patties the same diameter as your hamburger buns.
- Use a spatula to carefully transfer the patties to the hot pan and cook for 6-7 minutes on each side, until the outsides are crispy.
- Slide each burger onto a bun and add your favourite toppings.