Simple Black Bean Burger Recipe

I've eaten my way through plenty of black bean burgers, from restaurants and out of the boxes.  And I've read too many recipes that called for a bunch of spices and ingredients. I finally accepted the truth that I haven't found one I would enjoy eating if ever I were a castaway on an island and it was all I had to eat.

For the past month, I've been mashing my way through cans of black beans to find my own delicious black bean burger recipe. Now, I have it down and ready to share.  I've made it uber simple with just a few common ingredients and the patties don't take long at all to fry up.  In fact, it takes longer to oven-fry a sheet pan full of fresh cut french fries than to cook up 9 black bean patties.


Makes about 9 patties

  • 1/2 medium yellow onion
  • 1 cup flour (unbleached all-purpose, whole wheat, or garbanzo)
  • 1 tablespoon Colgin liquid smoke
  • 1 teaspoon Mexican oregano
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 4 cups or 2 (15-ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained

Using a food processor with the steel blade attachment, drop in the onion and mince it. Add the flour, liquid smoke, oregano, cumin, chili powder and pepper.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl and pulse ingredients into a paste. Next, add 2 cups black beans to the processor bowl, scrape down the sides again, pulse until mix is well blended and smooth.  Add remaining beans.  This time, make 2 to 3 quick pulses to cut the beans into the mixture. Transfer the THICK bean mix into a medium bowl. The mix should be heavy, thick, and sticky. If it's not, add more flour.  If the mix ends up being completely smooth become of the extra flour blending, don't sweat it. The patties will still taste great. Trust me.

Next, heat a medium or large size skillet over medium to medium-high heat. Use just enough oil to lightly cover the bottom of the skillet. Let the pan and oil get hot before cooking patties.

Scoop 1/2 cup bean mix into the pan. Dip the back of a large metal spoon into the hot oil from the pan and use it to flatten and shape the patty. Keep the patty about 3/4-inch thick.  Fry the patties for 1 to 1 1/2 minutes, then flip, fry another minute.  Transfer patties to baking sheet or serving platter.

Dress your burgers anyway you like.  Around here, we like to keep it simple with a little mayo and some kind of crunchy vegetable in between.

These black bean burger patties keep very well in the fridge. To reheat them, pop them in the microwave.  They're even strong enough to be heated in the toaster. I did it and it worked out fine.  We have a double toaster, so I toast my buns on one side and heat patties on the other. Talk about a FAST hot lunch.