If you spend much time poking around in the food blog world, you may come away thinking that January is National Quinoa Month. I’ve noticed that, in particular, there are a lot of vegetable quinoa burger recipes popping up.
Great idea, I thought. What I tried to take away from all of these recipes was some sort of quinoa burger that was hearty, kid friendly and super tasty. Most of all, I wanted a healthy veggie burger. If you’ve ever looked at the ingredient list on frozen veggie burgers, you’ve probably wondered if they were really food, or the output of a university science class.
Like a lot of my recipes, especially the ones I scrap together on the weekends, there’s a heavy influence from what is in our refrigerator that’s hitting the use-by wall. This time around it was red pepper and broccoli. So they’re in. And what goes great with both of those ingredients? Spinach. Garlic too. What I came up with was a pretty tasty veggie burger recipe that’ll trump anything in the frozen food aisle.
Making the Sliders
For the vegetable mixture, I was pulling together leftovers to get about 1 cup of vegetables. I put a sliced medium red pepper, a handful of steamed broccoli and some cooked spinach into a food processor and pulsed until it was well chopped. Put the vegetables into a large mixing bowl and add the breadcrumbs, cheese and herbs
Basically, you want to get to about 1 cup of chopped veggies.
These have some serious next day appeal too as the garlic really popped when I had them as a snack. The next time around I’ll double up what I make so that I’ll have some healthy lunch meals throughout the week.
Check out other great healthy quinoa recipes
Healthy and Delicious can co-exist in this hearty vegetable soup
A delicious breakfast skillet made with red quinoa
Make them on Sunday and have quick and delicious breakfasts all week
30 minutesCook time:
Yield: 12-16 sliders
- 1 cup Quinoa
- 2 cups water
- 4 Garlic Cloves
- 1/3 cup Frozen Spinach
- 1/3 cup Frozen Broccoli
- 1/3 cup Red Pepper (Chopped)
- 2 Large Eggs (more if it doesn’t hold together)
- 1 cup Toasted Breadcrumbs (I like Panko)
- 2/3 cup Cheddar Cheese
- 2 tablespoons Fresh Herbs (Basil, Cilantro or Parsley)
- 1/4 Teaspoon Cayenne Pepper (optional)
- 1/4 Teaspoon Smoked Paprika (optional)
- Cook the quinoa according to package instructions (typically about 20 minutes over a low simmer). Let this cool before you work it into the rest of the dish.
- Cook the frozen spinach and broccoli according to package instructions. Then drain them and place them in a food processor with the garlic and red pepper and pulse until they are chopped thoroughly.
- In a separate bowl, gently beat the two eggs and then pour on top of the rest. Add some salt and pepper and mix it all really well. What you want is a sort of batter that you can press into patties that isnt too wet and sticky, but also doesnt fall apart. Add in more breadcrumbs as necessary to find this balance.
- Season with salt & pepper, optionally add the cayenne and paprika. I think they give them some nice kick that isn’t too spicy. A splash of good quality soy sauce gives a touch of meatiness to them.
- When the burger mix is ready, take a handful and roll it into a round thats a little larger than a golf ball but smaller than a racket ball. Place each onto a sheet pan lined with parchment paper and gently press into slider shape. Leave them thicker than you want the finished product to be as youll press them a bit more once they cook. Ideally you should refrigerate them for at least half an hour so they set nicely.
- Bring a large skillet up to medium high heat and add a small amount of olive oil. Place the sliders into the skillet and gently press them down. Cook for 4-5 minutes per side until browned and crispy. Remember that youre using raw eggs, so they need to be cooked all the way through.
That’s it! I kept it pretty simple and served them with a healthy amount of ketchup. And they were delicious! They were also a big hit with our 16-month old son.
Oh My Veggies: 40 Vegetarian Quinoa Recipes, March 2013
Featured Recipe on Cooking Quinoa, April 2013
Acting Balanced: 25 fabulous Back-To-School lunch ideas, August 2013
Hello, Wonderful: 10 Yummy Ways for Kids to Try Quinoa, September 2014