When I was going to College in Vancouver I had a class mate who worked out daily and was very health conscious with her food choices. She was always bringing interesting food with her for lunch (grains I’d never heard of like quinoa & millet). My mom started cooking with grains in the late 80’s so this combined with my class mate’s healthy lifestyle really helped spark my interest in healthier food. When I lived in Vancouver the only place you could buy these grains were health food stores (1990’s).
The inspiration for this burger comes from a memory from those College days. Another classmate of mine invited me over to a BBQ at her place one Spring weekend. Her name was Ana and she was tall with a full mane of thick, stunning red hair. She made vegetarian burgers for the BBQ and it was one of the best I’ve ever had. The main component in her burger was sweet potatoes/yams.
I wanted to create a quinoa burgers so I cooked some sweet potato, added in some other tasty ingredients and the burger was born. This recipe makes 4 patties, enough for lunch for 4 days or dinner tonight. Note do not fry or grill this burger, it holds together nicely when baked. I have since updated the recipe and added in a little bread crumbs to bind it.
For toppings I added some sauteed, seasoned mushrooms, a spring lettuce mix, and tomato. The sauce included mayo mixed with chopped cilantro, salt, pepper and lemon juice.
- ½ cup water
- ¼ cup quinoa
- 1 tbsp sesame oil, olive oil or butter
- ½ cup spanish onion, minced
- 1 cup white mushrooms, minced (approx. 3-4 large)
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- ¼ cup dried bread crumbs
- 2 tsp combined (fajita & bbq spices) use any spice you like
- ⅓ cup cubed cooked yam or sweet potato
- ⅔ cup old cheddar cheese, grated
- ½ cup toasted pecans, chopped small
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp soya sauce or hoison sauce
- Salt & Pepper to taste
- Preheat your oven to 350 F.
- Put your water & quinoa in a pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook covered for 10-15 minutes. Take off heat and let sit another 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork and set aside.
- Heat oil or butter in pan and add mushrooms & onions. Cook until they start to soften slightly then add your spices + your minced garlic. Cook on low for an additional 5-10 minutes.
- IN a bowl beat your egg. Add cooled quinoa, mushroom mixture, yam/sweet potato, cheese, pecans, dried bread crumbs, and sauce. Season with pepper and just a pinch of salt. Stir it all up.
- Scoop approximately ⅓ cup out and form into a patty about 1 inch thick. Mixture will be sticky but still workable. Place patty on parchment lined baking sheet. You should end up with 4 patties on the baking sheet.
- These burgers need to be baked for 25 minutes.
- Patties will become a little brown and crispy.
- Serve with your favourite bun & fixins.