Lentils are a pretty great food. They don’t have much of a taste, so they can be versatile. They are cheap and quick to make, making them a great pantry staple. They have a high amount of protein and fiber, so they are a healthy and logical choice to star in a veggie burger.
This is an easy recipe that creates a thick, filling, flavorful veggie burger, great for meatless Monday, Lent or a healthy alternative to meat. Veggie burgers also last a long time in the fridge and are always easy to freeze for future use.
I have had this recipe for a long time; I got it from The Veggie Table, a good (albeit old-school interface) website that has a lot of good vegetarian recipes. Because the lentils take on the flavor of the food they are with, feel free to substitute other veggies or spices based on availability and preference.
Makes about 8 thick burgers
- 1 cup dry lentils, well rinsed
- 2½ cups water
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- ½ medium onion, diced
- 1 medium carrot, diced
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- 1 teaspoon soy sauce, optional
- ¾ cup rolled oats, finely ground
- ¾ cup bread crumbs
- Place the lentils, water and salt in saucepan, bring to a boil. Lower the heat, cover and simmer for about 45 minutes, until water is nearly gone and lentils are very soft, with splitting skins.
- Sauté the onion and carrot in oil until soft, about 5 minutes.
- Mix the lentils, onions, carrots, pepper and soy sauce (if using, I replaced a little of it with liquid smoke) in the large bowl, then mix in the ground oats and bread crumbs.
- While still warm, form the lentil mixture into patties, which can now be frozen, refrigerated (for up to 5 days) or cooked immediately.
- Cooking (2 possibilities):
- In a frying pan, heat a bit of oil, place a burger on top and fry until brown, 1-2 minutes. Repeat on other side and serve.
- In a 400º oven, bake the burgers on a greased baking sheet until light brown, about 15 minutes.