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How-To

Veggie Burgers that Rock

6 essential ingredients for hearty vegetarian burgers that even a meat-eater will love

August/September 2015 Issue
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When I met my vegetarian husband, he subsisted largely on frozen veggie burgers, poor guy. And while he now eats a much broader array of vegetarian food (thanks in no small part to me), he still craves a patty now and again. I’m a steadfast omnivore, though, and not a fan of most of the veggie burgers on the market. Too many rely on highly processed ingredients like textured vegetable protein and vital wheat gluten to hold the burgers together and make them springy and meat-like.

So I set out to build a better burger that even people who eat meat will crave. I wanted to actually taste the vegetables in my homemade veggie burgers, not hide them. And while you would never mistake the texture of my veggie burgers for beef (that’s not the goal), they hold together well enough to sear up as a patty. Since these burgers are delicate, however, it’s best to serve them on small, soft buns—hard rolls are too chewy. Or you can skip the bun altogether and serve them with a small salad instead. Thanks to the myriad flavors and texture packed inside these burgers, you won’t miss the bread.

Chill for future good eats

These recipes take a bit of work, so it makes sense to make a bunch of burgers at one time. Wrapped well in plastic, they’ll keep in the fridge for a few days. You can also freeze them for up to 3 months. Frozen burgers may be a bit more crumbly in the pan, but they’re still more delicious than the ones from a box. Cook frozen burgers straight from the freezer a little lower and a little longer.

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