These meat-free veggie burgers are bursting with light and bright spring flavors and produce, including citrus-filled lemons, earthy oats, and tender grated zucchini.
Can you tell I’m ready for s-p-r-i-n-g? (See what I mean by checking out my recent blog post featuring Protein-Packed Chocolate Chip Mint Ice Cream Smoothies.) Well, I am, and it totally makes its way into my cooking as well if you couldn’t already tell.
I used to turn my nose up at the idea of season-based cuisine: why can’t I have a hot bowl of soup in the summer if I feel like one? The same goes for a warm loaf of banana bread in the middle of the summer (assuming the craving is strong enough to outweigh the pretty big downside of turning on the oven in the middle of August).
But as the years have gone by, I totally get it. Doesn’t cold ice cream just taste better in the dog days of summer? Doesn’t a steaming bowl of chili taste like it was made to be consumed on a crisp fall day? These are pretty obvious examples, but you get the gist. And that’s why I’m all about the “natural” flavors of the season. For spring, a few flavors come to mind: lemon, oregano, zucchini, peas…
This recipe packs quite a few of these fresh and springy flavors into chickpea-based veggie burgers—ahh, refreshing. Ahh, spring.
Lemon-Oat Chickpea Burgers
[Yields 14 burgers. Cook Time: Approximately 35 minutes]
4 cans chickpeas, drained
1 cup grated zucchini (approximately half of 1 large zucchini)
1/2 cup old fashioned oats
3 tablespoons tahini
1/2 cup red onion, diced
1 teaspoon sriracha
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon salt (I used sea salt)
1/2 teaspoon pepper
Coconut oil or olive oil
Drain chickpeas. In a large mixing bowl, use two forks or a potato masher to thoroughly mash the chickpeas. Be sure to mash them well as this helps the burger patties to hold together.
Grate the zucchini using a cheese grater, then add to the zucchini mixture.
Juice the lemon, then add the lemon juice to the chickpea mixture.
Add all remaining ingredients to the chickpeas. Use your hands to mix everything together well.
Form the burgers into patties using your hands. I made 14 medium-to-large sized patties, but you can adjust this to fit your preferences.
Heat 1/2 tablespoon oil (I used coconut oil) in a large skillet over medium heat. Add several burger patties (I cooked 4 at a time) to the pan and fry for about 2 minutes or until golden brown, then flip and repeat on the opposite side.
Repeat until all burgers have been browned and enjoy. You may need to add another 1/2 tablespoon or so of oil for each batch – use your judgement and be sure to keep the pan well-oiled at all times to prevent sticking and encourage browning.
+ As with many veggie burgers, these may be a bit crumbly and should be handled with care.
+ You can easily cut this recipe in half if you don’t need as many burgers at once, but they work great for meal prep and should freeze well, although I haven’t test this yet.