Veggie burgers are delicious and I love eating them. I also love making them. There’s an art to making good veggie burgers that have lots of flavor, hold together and satisfy your biggest burger cravings. I make burgers so often, I’ve gotten pretty good at it and they’re always a hit with whomever I share them with. I also like to share my tips on making great veggie burgers. Check out How to Make Flavorful Veggie Burgers, The Healthy Homemade Veggie Burger: Tips and Tricks to Keep It Clean and Healthy and Tricks for Making Veggie Burgers That Won’t Fall Apart.
It’s easy to fall into a rut, though, making the same veggie burgers over and over again. That’s why I like to try making different kinds of burgers often. It doesn’t take a lot of effort to change things up a bit but the rewards are great. Just by changing one thing, you can feel like you’re eating a whole new burger. So if you’ve been feeling like you’re in a veggie burger rut, try these new ideas for making delicious veggie burgers.
1. Try a New Base
Not surprisingly, the first veggie burger I ever made was composed of beans and the second kind was made with lentils. Since that time I’ve made burgers out of all kinds of beans, chickpeas, eggplant, beets, potatoes, silken tofu, seitan, TVP, mushrooms, broccoli and more. You can make veggie burgers out of almost anything. Check out 10 Vegetables You Can Make Burgers With and Sandwich and Burger Fillings That are Soy and Processed-Ingredient Free for lots of suggestions and recipes.
Try these Hearty, Hefty Mushroom Burgers, Hearty Eggplant Burger with Vegan Mayonnaise, Zucchini Chickpea Burgers, Artichoke Sunflower Burgers, Daikon Patties, Zucchini and Corn Burgers, and Roasted Beet Burgers.
2. Use Leftovers
If leftovers make you yawn, try seeing them in a new way by repurposing them. Depending on what type of leftovers you have, they can get incorporated into a burger, used for a topping or turned into a sauce. Do you make your own almond milk? The leftover almond pulp can be used to make veggie burgers. Leftover salad goodies like tomatoes, lettuce and onions can be used for burger toppings. If there are any mashed potatoes or sweet potatoes left over from dinner, save them for burgers like these White Bean and Sweet Potato Burgers and Potato and Black Bean Burgers. Read How to Make Easy, Healthy Veggie Burgers From Leftovers for more ideas and recipes.
3. Superfood Burgers
Veggie burgers are much healthier than those containing meat, eggs and dairy but even vegan burgers can get pretty decadent. Boost your burger’s nutritional value by adding superfoods to them. Take a look at these 20 Everyday Superfoods You Should add to Your Grocery List and 7 Superfoods You Should Try This Week. Add ancient grains to your burgers like these Beet and Quinoa Veggie Burgers and these Chickpea Millet Burgers with Butternut Squash. Fermented foods really help our digestive system and these Simple Korean Kimchi BBQ Burgers are a delicious way to eat something super-healthy. Cauliflower is a superfood too and you’ll be so busy enjoying these Cauliflower Chickpea Patties, you won’t even think about how healthy they are.
4. Go Global
Eating global cuisine is always exciting. Each ethnic cuisine has their own flavor profile that makes their dishes specific to them. Learn How to Add Ethnic Flavors to Dishes and these Tips for Making Ethnic Dishes Taste the Best. Then travel around the world without ever leaving your kitchen with global burgers like these Italian Veggie Burgers, Thai Quinoa Burgers, Mexican Flavored Bean Burgers, and these Moroccan Spiced Lentil Butternut Squash Burgers. For even more recipes, see Around the World in 10 Amazing Vegan Burgers.
5. Stuff ‘Em
Instead of topping your burger with a delicious slice of vegan cheese, try stuffing the cheese inside the burgers. Stuffed burgers are like wrapped presents but instead of unwrapping them, you just bite into them to find a yummy surprise. Try it with these Mozzarella Stuffed Cannellini Burgers With Spinach Pesto.
A fun food trend is mash-ups. Mash-ups are two very different dishes combined to make one new, incredible dish. You can mash up two different types of foods like carrot cake and waffles or two types of ethnic dishes like falafel and tacos. Burgers are ideal for mash-ups since you can make burgers out of anything. Combine burgers and pizza to make these Pizza Burgers. The Greek classic dish of eggplant and potatoes becomes this amazing Moussaka Burger with Béchamel Cheese Sauce. Every New Year’s Eve, I make a big pot of Hoppin’ John to welcome in the New Year with prosperity and luck. These Hoppin’ John Sliders with Smoky Lemon Aioli Sauce and Sauteed Greens are a unique way to celebrate any day.
7. Skip the Bun
Burgers on a bun are great but honestly, sometimes I think the bread covers up the flavor of the burger a little bit. Skipping the bun is also a good way to lighten up what could be a heavy meal. Get tips on how to Lighten Up Sandwiches for the Summer – burgers are, technically, sandwiches. Then try your burgers in lettuce or collard wraps like these Chickpea Millet Burgers and Mushroom Lentil Herb Burgers. Eat them in a pita like this Big Bang Vegan Chickpea Patty or use mushrooms for the bun like this Portobello Eggplant Burger with Cashew Cheese. Of course, you can always skip any wrap and eat your burgers with a fork.
8. Spice It Up
If you’re bored with your usual burgers, it may not be the filling so much as it is your spice blend. It’s easy to under-spice the burger mix but when you think about it, if you’re making enough mix to make 8 or 10 burgers, one teaspoon of cumin isn’t going to go far. Be generous with your spices and maybe toss in some jalapenos or hot sauce. The mild flavors of foods like chickpeas and cauliflower are just begging for something hot and spicy. Try this Spicy Cauliflower Chickpea Burger and see how excited your taste buds get. For more hot and spicy goodness, try this Spicy Buffalo Quinoa Burger, Sriracha Tempeh Sliders with Ranch Dressing, Spicy Bean and Coconut Burgers and Spicy Cauliflower Potato Burgers.
9. Make Sliders
Sliders are fun and cute and they make even the usual burger seem more exciting. Maybe it’s just fun to feel like it’s ok to eat 3 burgers or try a variety of burgers or toppings at one time. Sliders are perfect for parties, appetizers or any time you want to change things up a bit. For fun-sized burgers, try these Hoppin’ John Sliders with Lemon Aioli Sauce and Sauteed Greens, Mini Black Bean Burgers with Garlic Basil Cream Sauce, Sriracha Tempeh Sliders with Vegan Ranch Dressing, and Potato Fritter Sliders with Chipotle Aioli. You can also go to the other extreme and make my Double Black Bean Tofu Cheeseburgers. You’ll have to open wide for those.
10. Try New Toppings
Lettuce, tomatoes and onions are great but how about stepping out of your comfort zone and trying something new and different on top of your veggie burger? From “Hey, that sounds good” to “Really? That sounds strange,” think about foods you might love to eat but never thought to put atop a burger. Sometimes, all you have to do is take one of your usual toppings like ketchup and add some unexpected flavors to it. Or, go totally wild by adding creamy sauces, homemade vegan cheeses, or crunchy veggie chips. Examples of creative toppings include these Black Bean Burgers with Chili Lime Sauce, Sweet Potato Chickpea Burgers with Apricot Mustard and Rosemary Fries, Black Bean Apple Burgers with Caramelized Onion Chipotle BBQ Sauce and Shiitake Bacon, Best Quinoa Veggie Burgers with Pumpkin Seed-Onion Cream, Walnut Lentil Burgers with Cauliflower Puree and Red Onion Relish, Stupid Simple Bean Burgers with Paprika Garlic Burger Sauce and Vegan Eggplant Crunchburgers. For more ideas, see 10 New and Different Ways to Top Your Burger.
It only takes a little imagination and creativity to change up your burgers from ho-hum to WOO HOO! For even more amazing vegan burger recipes, see these 25 Unique and Trendy Veggie Burgers.
Lead image source: Spicy Buffalo Quinoa Burgers