Casa de Campo Living

Crispy Quinoa Burgers

Quinoa Burger

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Quinoa BurgerMy reputation as a cook is generally acknowledged to be abysmal. However, I, like most women aspire to being as slim and healthy as possible, and in order to achieve that I’ve been slowly attempting to modify my diet… with varying results. Recently however, I had my first real break-through and not only managed to create something edible, but also relatively healthy. Crispy Quinoa Burgers.                                   

So in an attempt to A) motivate myself to keep trying new and healthy recipes, and B) help you get creative and try them too, I’ve decided to start sharing my recipes with you. Please be warned that “Rebecca Recipes” may be a little hit or miss, success will vary, and I don’t really do quantities either… this is quick and easy cooking at it’s finest!

Ingredients

  • 2 onions – finely chopped
  • Minced garlic – I really like garlic so I used about 5 cloves, most people would probably prefer 2
  • 1 cup of (cooked) chickpeas – roughly chopped
  • ¼ cup of coarse breadcrumbs – I didn’t have any, so I smashed up some left-over pretzels I just happened to have. However, I’m not so keen on this “unhealthy” addition, so maybe next time I will do without…
  • 2 eggs – beaten
  • 1½ cups of quinoa (white, red, black, whichever type you have) – I used red quinoa
  • Some grated cheese – about of a ¼ of a cup, I just used whatever was in the fridge, a Swiss cheese as it happens.

Steps

  • Quinoa BurgerCook the quinoa. Rinse quinoa, “toast” quinoa in a sauce pan for a few minutes, pour in 2 cups of water and bring to boil. Turn down heat to simmer, put a lid on the saucepan and cook for 15 minutes. Do not lift the lid. After 15 minutes turn off the heat and leave to stand for 5 minutes. Take off lid and “fluff” with a fork.
  • Combine all other ingredients in a mixing bowl.
  • Place mixture in the fridge for 5 minutes so it cools down and sticks together a bit more.
  • Create patties with your hands – small “mini-burger” size patties work best, as they are A) less likely to fall apart and B) they are more crispy in the end. Trust me I tried both.
  • Lightly grease a frying pan, best to use coconut oil as it is the healthiest oil to fry with (and is in general really good for you), but frying is frying, so I’m sure you could use any oil, probably even butter if you wanted.
  • Fry for about 5 minutes on each side. Resist the urge to flip them over too early – they will break apart. In fact it is best to turn them over just once and therefore reduce that risk.
  • Serve. I just put avocado on top of mine… But Philip wanted a real burger so he had his in bread with hot sauce and avocado.

Variations

  • Quinoa BurgerBreakfast burgers. We had plenty left over, so for breakfast I fried some more and added an egg on top… I was also tempted to put them in a wrap, falafel-sandwich style, maybe I’ll try that next time.
  • Salad. I’m sure these would be great served with a salad.
  • Additions. I think adding chopped carrots to the recipe would be rather nice.
  • Variations. Veggie burgers always have all sorts of beans, so rather than just chickpeas I’m sure you could do a mix of different beans, like black beans.

The health verdict by Jacqueline Silvestri Banks

jacqueline silvestri banksAs I mentioned although I try to be knowledgeable about all things, including health and nutrition, I am not an expert. So here’s what Jacqueline, a certified holistic health counselor, has to say about this meal.

Quinoa is a great choice for a veggie burger because it happens to be high in protein. Many people think of it as a grain, but it’s actually a seed and is full of antioxidants and vitamins and minerals including B6, potassium, zinc and magnesium. It’s high level of fiber can also benefit digestion and some claim that eating it regularly can help reduce migraines.

However, even though it is high in protein it is also high in carbohydrates so making it into a burger with a bun makes it a very high carbohydrate meal, which could cause a spike in blood sugar. Evening out the carbohydrates with a healthy fat (which will help balance a blood sugar spike from carbs), like avocado and skipping the bread, or wrapping it in a lettuce leaf instead, makes it a healthier meal!

The ingredients look great- the only thing I would switch would be the breadcrumbs subbing for either coarsely ground oatmeal or even casabe.

Coconut oil is a great oil for frying, avocado oil also does well in high heat.

Coming soon.. Chickpea curry.

This is one I have been doing regularly for a while now, so I know it is good… I even invented the recipe all on my own – based on the ingredients available in my fridge.

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