Quinoa-Veggie Burgers

May 4, 2012

If you’ve been following my blog since its inception just over two weeks ago(!), you already know that I adore quinoa. Well, today I finally had a chance to try out the Quinoa-Veggie Burger recipe that I discovered while flipping through an issue of Chatelaine during one of my many visits to the walk-in clinic (when you have three young children, you go there A LOT!). These tasty “burgers” are surprisingly quick and easy to make.

Chatelaine gives the preparation and cooking time as 20 minutes each (for a total of 40 minutes), but really the preparation (peeling and chopping vegetables) can be done in about 5 minutes, and if you use left-over quinoa instead of cooking a fresh batch, the cooking time can also be reduced to 15 minutes – meaning you can have lunch or dinner ready in about 20 minutes!

You can view the Chatelaine version of this recipe here, or you can follow along below to view how I made my burgers.

Ingredients:

1 and 1/4 cup cooked quinoa (I usually cook 1 cup quinoa – which turns into approximately 3 cups once cooked) at the beginning of each week so I have some readily available throughout the week for recipes like these Quinoa-Veggie Burgers, Quinoa Carrot Muffins, Greek Yogurt Delight, etc.)

1 egg, scrambled – EDITOR’S NOTE: by scrambled, I mean whisked & uncooked!

2 Tbsp cornstarch and 1 Tbsp brown rice flour (because I ran out of cornstarch, though you could use 3 Tbsp of either ingredient – I purchase my brown rice flour at the Bulk Barn)

2 Tbsp ground flaxseed (optional)

1/4 tsp salt

1/4 tsp cumin (because I didn’t have any cayenne pepper, which the Chatelaine recipe calls for and I thought cumin would taste good – it did!)

1 tsp canola oil

approximately 115 g cremini and portobello mushrooms, cleaned and chopped

1 coarsely grated medium zucchini

1 coarsely grated medium peeled carrot

1/2 medium onion, finely chopped

1 garlic clove, finely chopped

Directions:

1. Transfer quinoa into a large bowl. Stir in egg, cornstarch (and/or brown rice flour), ground flaxseed, salt and cumin.

2. Heat a large, wide non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Add oil, then mushrooms, zucchini, carrot, onion and garlic. Cook until soft, about 5 min.

3. Add cooked veggies to quinoa and egg mixture and stir.

4. Heat the same non-stick frying pan over medium heat. Firmly press quinoa mixture into a 1/3-cup measuring cup. If the burgers are not sticking together well, add some more cornstarch or brown rice flour to the mixture.

5. Turn and release into pan. Gently press to shape into a patty. cook until golden and warmed through, about 4 minutes per side. Repeat until quinoa-veggie mixture is “all gone” (picture my almost-two-year old here shrugging her shoulders and holding out the palms of her hands upwards as she says “all gone”- too cute!).

I THOROUGHLY enjoyed my quinoa-veggie burgers along with some romaine lettuce, sliced tomatoes, cucumbers, and avocado, topped with a generous dollop of hummus. Of course, I drizzled the raw veggies with my Honey Mustard Salad Dressing! [Though I have made my own hummus in the past, I prefer the one from Costco (brand name: “fontaine sante”) because let’s face it, I don’t really have time to make EVERYTHING from scratch, and the listed ingredients are “normal”: chickpeas, tahini (sesame butter) canola oil, lemon juice concentrate, sea salt, vinegar, garlic juice (garlic juice, salt).]

Chatelaine suggests topping the burgers with tahini sauce and roasted plum tomatoes. Their photo of the cooked burgers shows them served on top of a grilled portobello mushroom and arugula. It looks soooo yummy, I think I’ll try this next time!

Will you give this recipe a try? Are you interested in more “meatless” meals?

This recipe is by far my favourite banana muffin recipe, maybe even my favourite muffin recipe period. It was given to me by a former work colleague, who found it in a newspaper article almost a decade ago. I have yet to find a better tasting banana or bran muffin (healthy or otherwise!). I hope you’ll love them as much as I do – and as much as the wee ones did at this mornings visit to the Early Years Centre at my son’s school – seven children (ages 18 months – 5 years) devoured half a dozen of these healthy treats in under two minutes!

So what makes these muffins so healthy? Well, first of all they contain no butter or oil! AND, they contain wheat bran and ground flaxseed – both very beneficial to your diet. Stay tuned for a post about bran and flaxseed!

Ingredients:

1 cup whole wheat flour (to make them extra healthy, I sometimes use spelt flour)

3/4 cup wheat bran

3/4 cup ground flaxseed

1/2 cup mini chocolate chips (regular sized ones will work, too AND I sometimes toss in a few extra, though I do also make them without any chocolate chips and the kids still love them)

1 Tbsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp salt (I generally omit salt from my baking)

1 and 1/2 cups mashed ripe bananas (I let the beater do the mashing!)

3/4 cup dark brown sugar (I often use less)

3/4 cup buttermilk (this morning I used 3/4 cup kefir instead and they were SENSATIONAL!)

1 egg

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners.

In a large bowl, mix dry ingredients using a spoon.

In a medium-sized bowl, beat the bananas until mashed.

Add the wet ingredients and beat until blended.

Add dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix until just combined.

Spoon into prepared muffin cups. Bake for 20 – 25 minutes. Let cool completely before removing paper liner, or the liner will not come off cleanly.

 

What’s your favourite healthy banana muffin or bran muffin recipe?