These vegan black bean burgers are filled with delicious spices, hold their shape and are ridiculously quick and easy to make! Served with a soft vegan brioche bun, avocado, tomato and onion, this recipe is going to be your go to when that burger craving hits!
I am such a fan of veggie burgers and if you are too, then you’re going to love this recipe.
While I am not vegan or vegetarian I have recently reduced my red meat consumption and that means that I don’t currently eat beef burgers. There is a part of me that craves that classic burger experience however I know that eating something beef based will make me feel unwell. So what I was looking for with this recipe was a hearty and delicious burger that curbed that craving without feeling like I am eating something healthy.
To be clear this is a black bean burger, it’s not trying to be meat or replicate that experience. It’s just something delicious that I want to eat that is ticking the box of yummy burgers and leaves me feeling satisfied.
The biggest issue with vegan burgers is that the patties can be dry and crumbly or the complete opposite of being mushy, and often they are bland and lacking in flavour. Veggie burgers can also often have long ingredient lists making them feel like too much hassle to make at home.
This recipe checks all the boxes of what we need in a vegan burger without having any of the above issues. This recipe is designed so that hopefully you’ll have most ingredients on hand and the patties are easily made without fancy tools and dinner will be done in less than 20 minutes (that’s right, no chilling required!).
Make these tasty black bean burgers for a backyard BBQ this summer, put them on your weekly meal plan for a great meatless monday option or enjoy for Veganuary.
If you’re looking for more vegan burger ideas, make sure to also try my vegan spiced chickpea and cauliflower burgers.
This recipe for black bean burgers was created to be the simplest version possible with the most flavour. Beans can be a bit boring on their own, so we have a few ingredients that are going to enhance the flavour and give you a delicious tasting burger.
Note all ingredients and their quantities are laid out in the recipe card at the bottom of this post.
- Black beans – to make this recipe easy, we’re using canned black beans. Make sure they are well rinsed and drained before starting.
- Spices – to give the burgers flavour we’re using a combination of onion powder, garlic powder, cumin and paprika. Using dried spices means we don’t need to worry about precooking any onion and garlic and having that impact the texture of our burgers.
- Salt and black pepper – seasoning is essential to enhance the flavours and ensure our burgers are not bland.
- Fresh parsley or coriander – I sit in the category of people who can’t stand the taste of coriander (cilantro) so I like to use parsley to add freshness to the black beans but you can use either depending on your tastes.
- Chia seeds – as this is a vegan recipe, we need an element to help bind the burgers so that they don’t crumble and fall apart. For this we’re using a ‘chia egg’ which is just chia seeds combined with water for 10 minutes until it forms a gel. You can use either white or black chia seeds, it doesn’t matter. The chia also adds a yummy textural crunch to the burgers. If you don’t have chia, ground flax seed will also work as a substitute.
- Panko breadcrumbs – helping to absorb any excess moisture and bind the patties together. For a gluten free black bean burger, make sure to use gluten free breadcrumbs.
- Lemon juice – a squeeze of lemon juice adds so much vibrance to the burger and enhances all of the other flavours. It also adds just a small amount of moisture that’s going to help prevent our burgers from being too dry. You could use lime juice instead.
These vegan black bean burgers really are so simple to make and this recipe ensures you really don’t need any specialty equipment (that’s right, we’re not using a food processor!).
The very first step will be to make your chia egg replacement. In a small bowl mix the chia seeds and water together and set aside for 10-15 minutes or until it’s gel-like in consistency.
To make the burgers, you’ll start with your can of drained and rinsed black beans. You don’t need to worry about these being super dry, just drain off the excess water and add the beans to a large mixing bowl.
For these burgers, we want there to be some texture and structure which means we don’t want mushy beans which is why I don’t use a food processor for this step as I want to control the consistency. Use a potato masher or a fork to mash the beans up slightly so they are a bit broken down but still chunky.
To the beans add in all of your spices, the chopped parsley, breadcrumbs, lemon juice and the chia egg. Mix very well to ensure everything is combined evenly. For this step I actually like to use my hands as I can make sure everything is well mixed through, especially the chia seeds.
From here, you’ll divide the mixture into 4 and squeeze each portion tightly into a ball before gently pressing it out into a round flat patty shape. I find the easiest way to do this is to press the ball down on a flat plate and use your other hand to shape around the outside while pressing down.
The patties will hold their shape, but they are more delicate than a meat based pattie so just take your time and shape them gently.
Heat some olive oil in a frying pan over medium/high heat and once hot, gently add in your burgers using a flat spatula or turner.
Cook for 2 minutes on either side or until golden brown. Remove from the pan and place on a plate lined with a paper towel to drain any excess oil.
Now it’s time to assemble your burgers! To make these like the photos, I’ve split some vegan brioche buns (available at Woolworths, they are the best), and layered with some smashed avocado (which is just avocado, salt and lemon juice), a black bean burger, sliced tomato, sliced red onion, lettuce and spread the top bun with garlic aioli.
But you can really use any fixings that you prefer or simply serve the burgers alongside a salad rather than a bun.
One of the criticisms with bean based burger patties is that they are mushy. Bean based burgers will be softer in texture than if you were comparing it to a meat based one, however when cooked on a higher heat, the outside will go nice and crispy and provide that texture you want when combined with a soft bun. They will still be soft in the middle but this recipe creates a patty that is firm enough to hold some structure so they will be soft but not mushy.
You can store the black bean burgers in an airtight container in the fridge for 4-5 days. To reheat I like to place them in a preheated oven for about 10 minutes to warm through and ensure the outside remains crispy.
You can also freeze cooked patties wrapped individually in plastic wrap for up to 3 months. Let thaw at room temperature or in the fridge before reheating as above.
No, as written they are not gluten free but you can easily adapt the recipe by using gluten free breadcrumbs instead and serving with your favourite gluten free buns.
When testing I did find that the air fryer dried out the patties too much and resulted in a more crumbly texture. For that reason I recommend pan frying the patties for the best results. However if you do try air frying, please let me know how you go in the comments!
More simple vegan dinners to try:
Vegan Black Bean Burgers
- 1 x 420 gram can black beans rinsed and drained
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- ½ teaspoon paprika
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- 2 tablespoons freshly chopped parsley or cilantro
- 1 tablespoon chia seeds mixed with 3 tablespoons water
- ¼ cup panko breadcrumbs
- Squeeze of lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon olive oil for cooking
For serving (optional):
- 4 vegan brioche buns
- Salad of choice such as avocado, tomato, red onion and lettuce
- Garlic aioli
- Before you start, make sure you’ve mixed your chia seeds with the water and let sit aside for 10-15 minutes until it’s a gel-like consistency.
- Drain off the excess water from your black beans and add to a large mixing bowl. Using a potato masher or a fork, mash the beans up slightly so they are a bit broken down but still chunky.
- To the beans add the onion powder, garlic powder, cumin and paprika, the chopped parsley, breadcrumbs, lemon juice and the chia seed gel. Using your hands, mix very well to ensure everything is combined evenly.
- Divide the mixture into 4 and squeeze each portion tightly into a ball before gently pressing it out into a round flat patty shape.
- Heat about a tablespoon of olive oil in a frying pan over medium/high heat, and once hot, gently add in your burgers using a flat spatula or turner.
- Cook for 2 minutes on either side or until golden brown. Remove from the pan and place on a plate lined with a paper towel to drain any excess oil.
- To serve, split some vegan brioche buns and layer them with avocado, a black bean burger, sliced tomato, sliced red onion, lettuce and spread the top bun with garlic aioli.
Nutritional information is provided as a guide only and is calculated using automated online tools, therefore we cannot guarantee the accuracy. We encourage you to make your own calculations based on the actual ingredients used in your recipe.