Black Rice and Lentil Veggie Burgers

After a weekend of eating way more meat than usual (ballpark franks – go Nationals! – and barbecue), I decided it was high time for a Meatless Monday recipe. I love making homemade veggie burgers because you’re in charge of what goes in, and what stays out. My Black Rice and Lentil Veggie Burgers are loaded with plant-based protein (1 cup of lentils has 20 grams), iron, zinc and antioxidant-rich veggies like asparagus and carrots. I used rolled oats in place of bread crumbs and gelled chia seeds instead of eggs to bind these beauties together, keeping the end result gluten-free and vegan.

Serve them over a bed of fresh mixed greens, some sliced fresh avocado and tomato, and kick it up with your favorite hot sauce for a simple, healthy supper or easy-to-pack lunch for those of you on the go. These would also be awesome for any vegetarians in need a Fourth of July BBQ alternative to burgers and hot dogs.

Black Rice and Lentil Veggie Burgers

Black Rice and Lentil Burgers

{makes 6 patties}

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 cup black rice
  • 1/2 cup lentils
  • 1/2 cup carrots, coarsely grated
  • 1/2 cup asparagus, coarsely grated
  • 1/2 red onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup gluten-free rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup chopped mint
  • 2 Tbs chia seeds (soaked in 4 Tbs of water)
  • 1 Tbs cumin
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup olive oil

How to Make It:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
  2. Bring the rice to a boil with two cups of water. Reduce to a simmer and let cook, covered, for 35-40 minutes or until all water is absorbed. Remove from heat and fluff with a fork. (Tip: Do this ahead and save time.)
  3. Cook the lentils in 1 1/2 cups of water. Cover, bring to a boil, lower heat, and cook for about 20 minutes or until the lentils are tender and the water is mostly absorbed.
  4. Add chia seeds to water and let stand for 15 minutes until they gel and thicken.
  5. Combine rice, lentils, chia seeds and add all the remaining ingredients (except the oil) in a large mixing bowl. Mix thoroughly.
  6. Take half the mixture and place it in a food processor, pulsing until it forms a thick paste. Add it back to the unprocessed mixture and kneed by hand until combined.
  7. Use a 1/2 cup dry measuring cup to scoop some of the mixture into your hands. Form patties with your hands, flattening on the top and bottom. Refrigerate for 30 min (or up to 24 hours).
  8. Place a heavy skillet over medium/high heat, add the oil and heat until hot but not smoking. Add the patties and cook for 1-2 min on each side or until each side is firm and golden.
  9. Place in a baking dish in the oven for about 15-20 min.
  10. Serve immediately or let cool and store in refrigerator for up to 10 days or freezer for up to 3 months.

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