Curried Lentil Burgers

Sometimes I get a craving for Indian food.  Sometimes I get a craving for a good veggie burger.  This is the answer to both.

Curried Lentil Burgers with Red Cabbage Slaw

If you’ve read the write-up of my Loaded Veggie Quinoa Sliders, then you’ll know my feelings on the frozen veggie burger market. It’s not that great.  The options are getting better, but the ingredient lists from pre-made burgers are out of hand.
Indian Spiced Lentil Burgers
For this reason, from time to time I find myself thinking about how to build a better veggie burger.

When it comes to lentils, I wish I cooked more with them, but I just don’t have enough good lentil recipes that aren’t soup.  And there’s only so much green lentil soup that one can make.  This was a chance to break out of that rut and try a little something different with an Indian spiced lentil burger.

I’m using two kinds of lentils here.  Green lentils hold up well and give the burgers their textures.  Red lentils tend to fall apart when cooked, but still add flavor and color.  Onion, garlic, ginger and cumin bring the Indian spice.  Finally, spinach (or any other hearty green that you prefer) gives an extra nutritional bonus.

One change I’ve made here from a traditional veggie burger mix is to use ground-up pretzels instead of bread crumbs.  This is something I picked up from Carolina at The Baking Cup in her recipe for flavorful veggie burgers.   I thought the pretzels gave the finished product more body and character than plain bread crumbs alone.

Overall, I think it’s a pretty easy lentil burger recipe.  Grab some small burger buns to make the sandwiches.  Then top each with a red cabbage and carrot salad for some added crunch and to balance the flavors.

See a video of them being prepared at: Healthy Frugal Blog Recipes – Curried Lentil Burgers 

Easy Lentil Pattie Recipe
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Curried Lentil Patties
An Indian spiced veggie burger made with spinach and hearty green lentils
Total time:
50 Minutes 

  • 1 cup Green Lentils
  • 1/2 cup Red Lentils
  • 1 Medium White Onion (finely chopped)
  • 1 teaspoon Curry Powder
  • 3 Cloves Garlic (minced)
  • 1 Teaspoon Ginger (freshly grated)
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1/2 cup Pretzels
  • 1 Teaspoon Cumin Seed (toasted & ground)
  • 1 Cup Frozen Spinach
  1. Cook the spinach and press out any excess water
  2. Cook the lentils over medium in a covered saucepan. I use a 2:1 water to lentil ratio, so 3 cups of water or stock. This should take 20-25 minutes
  3. While the lentils are cooking, use a skillet to toast the cumin seeds and then grind them in a mortar & pestle (or use ground cumin)
  4. When they are done, mash them lightly with a potato masher and add the cumin and curry powder
  5. In the same skillet, cook the onion for 5 minutes over medium in 1 Tablespoon of olive oil. When it starts to turn translucent, add the garlic & ginger and cook 5 minutes more
  6. In mixing bowl, beat eggs. Allow the onion mix, spinach and the lentils to cool before adding them to the eggs
  7. Once cooled, add the onion mix, then the spinach, then the lentils to the bowl and mix thoroughly.
  8. Pulse pretzels in a food processor, mix gradually into the bowl until you have a good burger-like texture
  9. Using an ice cream scoop, scoop out handfuls of the mix and form into about 12 patties.
  10. If you have time, place them all on a silpat (or parchment paper) on a sheet pan, covered, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes
  11. Cook the patties in a skillet over medium heat for about 4-5 minutes per side.



  1. Great thought to use both varieties of lentils…look de-lish!

  2. I love your burgers!The ground toasted cumin must give so much flavor to these and the choice of lentils sounds perfect!Great recipe and I cannot wait to try it 🙂

  3. Thanks, Kari, it was one of those in-the-moment decisions when I found a jar of red lentils sitting around and remembered how well they break down. Might try 1:1 next time for green to red.

  4. Most definitely! Let me know if you wind up making any changes…always love hearing how people alter recipes to make it their own.

  5. Hey Tony! I used 50% red and 50% green lentils, turned out great! Thanks for the recipe!

  6. Wow they look awesome!! I am a new fan of lentils and always looking for new great ways to use them. Thank you! My recent post Cheese & Cream Cake with Strawberries and Oreos – Käsesahne-Torte mit Erdbeeren und Oreos

  7. Thanks, Kathrin! Hope they turn out great if you give them a try.

  8. Hi Marcus – Thanks so much for sharing….glad to hear they turned out great!

  9. Duane Harper

    Hello Tony. The Curried Lentil Patties turned out quite delicious minus the Curry powder. The recipe did not specify when to add it. I'm still new at this. The ground cumin was the key flavor, though. I also used half a teaspoon of ground ginger. I added finely chopped fresh spinach to the lentil mix after removing it from the heat. The pretzels also worked well. The red cabbage and carrot salad was the perfect combination. My wife and I enjoyed the flavors and textures. I served it without the buns. Thank you for the recipe. Duane

  10. Hi Duane – Thanks a bunch for the follow-up, really glad to hear they turned out so well. Also, thanks for the catch on the curry powder, I've updated the recipe.

  11. its very informative post lentils burger is my favorite dish.specially children's love to eat this burger.i not this recipe and i make this recipe for my children.thanks for posting

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