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Chickpea and Quinoa Veggie Burgers

Chickpea and Quinoa Veggie Burgers

From Alexandra Cooks


To cook quinoa: Bring a pot of water to a boil. Once the water comes to a boil, add the quinoa and cook for 9 minutes. Drain. There is no need to salt the water here because the mixture is seasoned sufficiently (but otherwise I would salt the water). For these burgers, I have been cooking a cup of quinoa at a time, which produces over 2 cups of cooked quinoa, and I use 1 cup here and the rest for a salad. But if you want to try to produce a single cup of quinoa, try starting with about 1/3 cup (66 grams) of dried quinoa. It won't be perfect, but it will be close.

The weights below for the vegetables (onions, scallions, herbs, zucchini) are rough — use them as a guide. Try to stay somewhat close but don't worry about completely matching.

You can use any spices you like. Cumin is common, but I find it to be overpowering. Smoked paprika offers a nice smokiness and a nice change if you are looking for one.

Chickpea and Quinoa Veggie Burgers


  1. 1 cup (200 grams) dried chickpeas
  1. For the tahini sauce:
    3 tablespoons olive oil
    3 tablespoons tahini
    1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice (about 1/2 a lemon)
    2 tablespoons water
    1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
    1 to 2 cloves garlic, crushed
    1 teaspoon maple syrup or honey (optional)
  1. For the pickled red onions:
    1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
    1 tablespoon red wine vinegar (or any vinegar)
  1. For the burgers:
    1 cup cooked quinoa (I like red for its color, but you could use any variety)
    1 small onion, peeled and roughly chopped (168 grams once trimmed)
    3 or so scallions, ends trimmed and roughly chopped (36 grams once trimmed)
    Basil, cilantro, parsley, whatever you like, a small handful (25 grams of each roughly)
    2 teaspoons kosher salt
    1 1/2 teaspoons smoked paprika
    Crushed red pepper flakes, to taste
    1 small zucchini, grated (185 grams once grated)
    Grapeseed oil for frying
    Naan, lettuce, tahini sauce (so yummy!), pickled red onions, sriracha or other hot sauce (optional)


  1. Place dried chickpeas in a bowl and cover with water by a few inches. Let sit overnight, or at least 12 hours. If time permits, 18 to 24 hours is best. Drain.
  2. Make the tahini sauce: In a small bowl, stir together the tahini (being sure to stir the tahini itself first to make sure it is emulsified), olive oil, lemon juice, water, salt, and garlic. Taste. Add the maple syrup or honey if desired. (I like this dressing with a touch of sweetness.) Taste. Adjust with more salt, if necessary, and thin out with more water if necessary, too — the sauce should be pourable or the consistency of a traditional dressing.
  3. Make the pickled red onions: In a small mixing bowl, combine the onions and vinegar. Season with salt and allow the onions to macerate until they have softened, about 15 minutes. Set aside until ready to use.
  4. Make the burgers: Place the drained chickpeas, quinoa, onion, scallions, herbs, salt, paprika, and pepper flakes in the food processor. Process until blended, about 10 seconds. Scrape down the sides of processor and pulse again until combined. Transfer to a large mixing bowl.
  5. Add the grated zucchini and with a spatula or your hands, incorporate the zucchini into the mixture. Taste the mixture. It should taste good, and shouldn't need much adjustment, but do adjust if necessary.
  6. Use a 1/2-cup measuring cup to portion the mixture into 6 (plus a little guy) patties. Squeeze the mixture between your hands as you shape each patty. The mixture will feel wet. When you shape the patties, the mixture might even feel a little delicate, and you will probably worry that the patties will fall apart in the pan. But, as long as your patties can hold their shape on the plate or sheetpan, you're in good shape. At this point, the patties can be wrapped and stored in the fridge for a day or two.
  7. Depending on how many patties you are cooking at one time, heat a sauté pan over medium high heat. For two patties, add 1 tablespoon grapeseed oil. When the oil begins to skid around the pan and feels hot to your hand hovering above, gently lower a patty into the oil. Repeat with another. Cook for three minutes adjusting the heat as necessary. Flip. Cook for three minutes more. Serve immediately with naan, lettuce, tahini sauce and onions.
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