Really Good Veggie Burgers (Vegan and Gluten Free)

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Made from a mix of savory shiitakes, lentils, brown rice and walnuts with plenty of umami-boosting condiments baked right into the patty, these really good veggie burgers as good for you as they are satisfying. But you won’t be thinking about their nutritional profile when you’re deciding how many pickle slices to put on top, or whether it’s a sriracha mayo kind of day.

Really Good Veggie Burgers Vegan Gluten Free 780 | Umami Girl

Why we love this recipe

I’m one of those people who thinks there’s room in the world for lots of kinds of veggie burgers. I’m cool with a falafel burger with grilled halloumi and harissa mayo (thank you Giraffe for making that a thing). I’m great with a marinated portobello cap between buns, even — especially! — if it’s decorated with all kinds of crazy nonsense. And give me a cumin-scented, slightly sweet vegan burger patty sometimes too.

But even though I don’t always feel like eating ground beef, sometimes I just want a BURGER.

Something I would slap inside a standard-issue bun and take to the fixins bar. A patty that cooperates with the rest of the burger experience instead of getting in the way. And that’s exactly what I’m sharing today. Finally. A really good veggie burger that’s just a really good veggie burger.

(And hey, it’s vegan and gluten free, if you’re into that sort of thing.) 

cooking lentils and rice with salt and herbs de provence in a medium pot

Ingredients for veggie burgers

Not gonna lie, there are a decent number of ingredients in these veggie burgers. But (with the possible exception of the optional Marmite) there’s nothing crazy or hard to source, and there are no special skills required. This recipe makes a big batch, so you can bake them in advance and refrigerate or freeze them for later.

Also: They’re worth it, I promise.

cooking onion, celery, garlic, and shiitake mushrooms in a nonstick frying pan

Here’s what you’ll need to make these burgers:

  • Brown lentils (sometimes — confusingly — called green lentils)
  • Short-grain rice. You can use either brown or white rice.
  • Salt and pepper
  • Herbs de Provence
  • Olive oil
  • Onion
  • Celery
  • Garlic
  • Shiitake mushrooms
  • Walnuts
  • Ketchup
  • Soy sauce
  • Dijon mustard
  • Ground flax seed
  • Marmite
  • Cornmeal
using a food processor to pulse walnuts, mushroom mixture, and lentil mixture together

How to make really good veggie burgers

It takes a little time and several steps to make these veggie burgers, but it’s not hard. Here’s what you’ll do. You can see all the steps in action in the video that accompanies this post.

Cook the lentils and rice

  • In a medium pot, combine the lentils, rice, salt, herbs de Provence, and three cups of water.
  • Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer until water is absorbed and rice and lentils are cooked.
  • If you’re using brown rice, this will probably take 40 minutes. If you’re using white rice, it will take more like 20 minutes. Check the packaging on your rice and lentils for guidance, and don’t stress about it. Just make sure both the rice and lentils are tender before proceeding. If all the water is absorbed and lentils are still a bit shy of tender, you can often just leave the lidded pot alone for a bit to steam and finish tenderizing.

Cook the mushroom mixture

  • Meanwhile, warm the oil in a 12-inch frying pan over medium-high heat.
  • Add the diced onion and celery and cook, stirring occasionally, until beginning to soften, about five minutes.
  • Stir in garlic and cook one minute more.
  • Add the shiitakes as they fit into the pan and cook, stirring frequently, until browned in spots and about halved in volume, 10 minutes or so.
  • Toward the end of the cooking time, preheat oven to 450°F with two racks as near the center as possible. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
adding ketchup, soy sauce, ground flax seeds, dijon mustard, marmite, and pepper to the veggie burger mixture in a mixing bowl

Pulse it all together in the food processor

  • Into a full-size food processor fitted with the blade, place the walnuts and the mushroom mixture.
  • Pulse until finely chopped.
  • Stir in the cooked rice and lentils and pulse a few times to combine.

Add the flavorings

  • Transfer mixture to a large mixing bowl.
  • Add the ketchup, soy sauce, flaxseed, mustard, marmite, and black pepper and mix together thoroughly.
  • Stir in the cornmeal.
forming burgers into patties, baking them, and putting a cooked burger patty on a bun with cheese, ketchup, mustard, and pickles

Shape the patties and bake the burgers

  • Form the mixture into 10-12 patties and place on parchment-lined baking sheets.
  • Bake for 15 minutes, then flip each patty, rotate locations of pans and bake 15 minutes more.

Equipment

These tools will come in handy for this recipe:

How to serve these veggie burgers

The point of these veggie burgers is that you can treat them exactly like regular burgers. We love to go classic: put them on brioche buns or potato rolls with cheese, mustard, mayo, and pickles.

Or use any sauce you like. You might try:

For toppings, how about:

How to store veggie burgers

These patties keep well tightly sealed in the fridge for up to a week and can be reheated in the microwave. Or you can freeze the cooked patties for up to six months, then thaw at room temperature and reheat in the microwave.

Psst…would you like fries with that?

Here ya go.

Really Good Veggie Burgers Vegan Gluten Free 780 | Umami Girl

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Really Good Veggie Burgers (Vegan and Gluten Free)

This veggie burger recipe has a great, savory flavor profile that works really well with all the usual burger toppings. It's nice and sturdy, too, so treat it just as you would a regular burger.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Serves Makes 10 patties

Ingredients

For the burgers

  • 1 cup uncooked brown or green lentils
  • 1/2 cup uncooked short-grain brown rice
  • 1 teaspoon herbes de Provence
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 3 large stalks celery, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 20 ounces sliced shiitake mushrooms
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/4 cup ketchup
  • 3 tablespoons reduced sodium tamari
  • 3 tablespoons ground flaxseed
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon marmite
  • 10-20 generous grinds black pepper
  • 3/4 cup yellow cornmeal

To serve

  • Buns
  • Good old burger toppings (cheese, lettuce, tomato slices, pickle slices, ketchup, mustard, etc.)

Directions

  1. In a medium pot, combine the lentils, rice, salt, herbes de Provence and three cups of water. Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer until water is absorbed and rice and lentils are cooked, about 40 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, warm the oil in a 12-inch frying pan over medium-high heat. Add the onion and celery and cook, stirring occasionally, until beginning to soften, about five minutes. Stir in garlic and cook one minute more. Add the shiitakes as they fit into the pan and cook, stirring frequently, until browned in spots and about halved in volume, 10 minutes or so.
  3. Preheat oven to 450°F with two racks as near the center as possible. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  4. Into a full-size food processor fitted with the blade, place the walnuts and the mushroom mixture. Pulse until finely chopped. Stir in the cooked rice and lentils and pulse a few times to combine. Transfer mixture to a large mixing bowl. Add the ketchup, tamari, flaxseed, mustard, marmite and black pepper and mix together thoroughly. Stir in the cornmeal.
  5. Form into 10 patties and place on baking sheets.
  6. Bake for 15 minutes, then flip each patty, rotate locations of pans and bake 15 minutes more.
  7. Serve 'er like a burger. (Sorry, I just had to.) These patties keep well in the fridge for up to a week and can be reheated in the microwave. Or you should be able to freeze cooked patties, though I haven't tried this yet because they always disappear within the week.

Nutrition Information

Amount Per Serving:

Calories:: 332 Total Fat:: 13.7g Carbohydrates:: 43.8g Fiber:: 6.9g Protein:: 11.3g

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