If you’ve been around the Bewitching Kitchen for a while you know that I eat quite a bit of meat, enjoy eggs, dairy, grains, regular pasta, whole-wheat pasta, sushi, oysters, sweets, there’s basically no category of food I refrain from eating.  So, when you see me rave about a veggie burger, rest assured: I rave from the perspective of a content omnivore. I love what tastes great. Period. If you are a vegetarian, you will flip for these. If you are not, be ready to flip too.  These are spectacular.


(from Fine Cooking Magazine)

1/2 cup rolled oats
1 15.5-oz. can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 large egg
1 tsp. ground cumin
Kosher salt
2 oz. finely grated pepper Jack cheese (1/2 cup)
1 large scallion, minced
2 Tbs. chopped fresh cilantro
1 Tbs. olive oil; more for the plate
4 whole-wheat hamburger buns, toasted
Jarred salsa, for serving
Sliced avocado, for serving

Put the oats in a food processor and pulse three times to roughly chop. Add half of the beans and pulse into a coarse paste, about 6 pulses. Add the egg, cumin, and 1/2 tsp. salt and process to mix well, about 1 minute. Transfer the bean mixture to a large bowl. Stir in the remaining beans, the cheese, scallion, and cilantro.

With wet hands, form the bean mixture into four 1/2-inch-thick patties and transfer to a lightly oiled plate. Refrigerate for 10 to 15 minutes to let the burgers set up.

Heat a large heavy-duty skillet (preferably cast iron) on high heat until very hot; add the oil and swirl the pan to coat the bottom. Cook the burgers until browned, with a good crust, 2 to 3 minutes; then carefully flip and cook, flipping again if necessary, until the burgers feel firm when pressed with a fingertip, another 3 to 5 minutes. Serve the burgers in the buns, topped with the salsa and avocado.


to print the recipe, click here

I saw this recipe in one of the recent issues of Fine Cooking, but did not think much of it. Then, a member of a cooking forum (Cook’s Talk) raved about them. She said that her husband and son, who would normally twist their noses at any burger made with less than 99% beef,  loved them too.  With that endorsement, I was powerless to resist.

Just remember that the patties need to sit in the fridge for a little while to firm up, other than that, a very simple and weeknight-friendly recipe.   They taste amazing, their texture is obviously more crumbly than that of a meat burger, but I don’t see this type of preparation as a substitute for the real thing, it’s just a fun recipe to open your gastronomic horizons.

Before you ask, I did not make the sweet potato fries, they were frozen entities by the brand Alexis, which we find quite tasty.  However, I did make the hamburger buns: a Wheat Berry Caraway bread that turned out as a great partner for these tasty burgers. Recipe shall be on the blog in the near future.

Seriously: try these black bean cuties soon… you will thank me, I am sure. No matter how much you love sinking your teeth into a medium-rare beef burger…   😉



ONE YEAR AGO: Carrot and Sesame Sandwich Loaf

TWO YEARS AGO: Border Grill Margaritas


FOUR YEARS AGO: Vermont Sourdough


  1. I agree, that is quite the endorsement! I must try this one on the crew of carnivores over here ;-). The pepper jack cheese sounds delightful and I like the use of oats too – I tend to use rice in veggie burgers so this will be a fun experiment. Great tip about letting the patties firm up in the fridge – makes so much sense! I foresee trying these sometime in the next week — thanks Sally!


            • The burgers were a huge hit Sally!! (in fact I’m a little disappointed there are no leftovers for breakfast 😉 ) — everyone had seconds!! The boys found them very reminiscent of falafel with the crispy outside and tender, moist inside. My hubby loved them too — everyone was very enthusiastic about the change. Like you said, not meant to mimic meat burgers, just something different and delicious in its own right. Full of tastiness too. I’m already conspiring the variations I will make in my next version :). Thank you Sally! This will be a definite repeat meal for us.


              • Aren’t they delicious? It is true, now that you mentioned, they do go in the direction of falafel, maybe that’s one of the reasons I loved them so much

                I look forward to your variations, I know you will come up with outstanding stuff!


  2. These flavorful burgers are great to have at a cookout for a large group of people. It is nice to be able to offer an alternative for those choosing not to have meat.


  3. I love ground beef burgers as well and with this kind of recommendation, it’s worth at least one attempt. No tomatoes on mine though the salsa verde looks interesting paired with melted pepper jack cheese.


        • oh, that’s serious then… Your experience sounded like mine with anchovies pate at a wedding when I was about 12 years old. I looooove black ollives and in my ignorance assumed that it was the ingredient in the pate. Placed the whole little round of bread with the huge dollop of anchovie thing in my mouth

          the narrative shall stop here., Use your imagination… 😉


  4. My husband was a vegetarian for years, god knows why, but I made hundreds of bean and grain based burgers in my trusty food processor. They’re so easy to make, and you can be so creative with them seasoning-wise, that I would never buy the frozen ones. Yours is a fabulous sounding recipe. It makes me want to make them again!!!


    • It is true, bean and grain burgers can be a lot of fun to play with, but some recipes are better than others. I’ve had some disasters in the past… they did not end on the blog ;-0))))


    • Yes, those potatoes look mighty good, don’t they? I have a blog post waiting to be published, on crispy oven “fried” sweet potatoes. So many recipes, so little time to blog them 😉


  5. We just made these last night:D Not your recipe, but a similar version, kind of improvised from a Vegan book, that soon became unveganized when we added egg white. I found ours very moist but crumbly and wondered if your whole egg helped? Also maybe the oats did as well. The recipe I tried had panko crumbs but we left them out. Your buns are fantastic.. we just had store-bought, but love this sort of veggie burger! Will post this week and link back here! xx


    • Wonderful, I am curious to see your recipe… I think you definitely some binder for this type of burger and the processed oats do that well, same for the eggs.


  6. Love the look of these, especially since there is that strong ‘h’ component about them 😉 ! Our cheeses would be different and black beans are not used as much Down Under as across your way, but I can think of a number of ways to tweak!! Uhuh, have tried similar ready bought . . . have found some edible but none enjoyable!!!!


    • Ah, the elusive “h” component, that component that shall remain nameless 😉

      Store bought can be nasty, I tried a couple and to me they tasted like punishment. Maybe I did not hit the jackpot of the best brands…


    • Gordon! Great, enjoy the lobstah lunch… it’s such a nice venue, small, afternoons free to get together with people you want to discuss on a more relaxed atmosphere… I hope you have a great time – if you are giving a poster or an oral presentation, good luck!


  7. Been meaning to try these since posted on CT now with your endorsement I will have to make it on the immediate test list!

    And as you probably know we’re kindred spirits when it comes to eating!!
    Must get started on bread bakingthose rolls sound awesome!


      • Thank you for the nudge, made them tonight even though I knew they’d get an upturned nose from my DW! Served them on Trader Joe’s Slim Multi-grain rolls! They were awesome, DW was so surprised and delighted! They’re now added to the to be repeated list! And I’ll be adding them to the menu list for my vegetarian client!


  8. Done! We are definitely going to make these. As you know we’ve turned to eating a much more vegetarian diet (although not entirely – particularly since it’s patio grilling season!) and these will be delicious. You also now have me craving some sweet potato fries. I love those little things! I’ll let you know when we try them. I know it will be soon. 🙂


  9. Pingback: Our Favorite Black Bean Burger Recipe - Just a Smidgen

  10. Sally, I made your burgers a third time last night — we just love them. I use whatever beans/herbs I have on hand so they vary a little each time but have kept the oats/cheese consistent in their deliciousness :O). It’s such a nice change and so simple too which this mom always appreciates! We enjoyed all kinds of sauces with them last night – yogurt, sriracha, chipotle… YUUUUM, xx.


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