Recipes > Lunch/Dinner > Bean Burgers Base Recipe

Bean Burgers Base Recipe

These easy bean burgers are a much healthier choice than their greasy counterparts. Unlike beef, beans provide fiber and no saturated fat.
bean burgers base recipe on a whole grain burger bun topped with tomato and lettuce on a wooden cutting board

This is one of our base recipes. Plant-forward diets should not be restrictive or boring, which is why we created this delicious bean burger recipe! These easy bean burgers provide plenty of flavor, moisture, and quality protein to satisfy your plant-based burger cravings!

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Culinary Tips for the Best Bean Burgers

Drain and rinse the beans to remove excess sodium. Mash to the texture you like. You can leave them slightly chunky or keep mashing to resemble refried beans.

If you have picky eaters, dice the onion or shallot finely so that they don’t notice them. 

Match the patty size to your bun, noting that they will slightly shrink as they cook.

Do not overcook the patties or they will dry out! Once the edges are brown, remove them from the oven.

You can cook these burgers on the stovetop instead of the oven, but note they don’t stay together quite as well. Heat a skillet over medium. Add oil to the pan. Once the oil is shimmering, add the patties. Cook 3-4 minutes per side. 

If cooking bean burgers on the stovetop, remember the 3 F’s of flavor: fire, fat, and food! Heat your pan, heat your oil, then add the burgers. Once the burgers are on the skillet, don’t move them around. Keeping them in place helps ensure maximum flavor development and browning.

Ingredient Substitutions

  • Oil for the Pan: substitute cooking spray.
  • Beans: use any low-sodium beans of your choice – black, pinto, chickpeas, cannellini, kidney, etc. You can also use 3 cups of leftover beans from our stovetop or Instant Pot dried beans base recipes.
  • Panko Bread Crumbs: substitute plain, whole wheat, or seasoned bread crumbs, but cut back on the added salt if you do. Panko is typically very low in sodium. 
  • Fresh Herbs: use any herb or combination of herbs, keeping in mind the final flavor or cuisine that you want. Basil, chives, cilantro, dill, Italian parsley, and rosemary are all great choices. Don’t have fresh herbs on hand? Substitute 1 Tablespoon dried herbs. Note that some herbs, like sage and dill, have stronger flavors, so start with ½ Tablespoon.
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil: substitute canola or avocado oil.
  • Shallot or Onion: use white, yellow, red, or green onions. You can also substitute ½ teaspoon onion powder.
  • Eggs: substitute two flax eggs to make vegan bean burgers. To make two flax eggs, mix 2 Tablespoons ground flaxseeds with 6 Tablespoons water. Let sit for 10 minutes or until thickened.
  • Garlic: substitute 1 teaspoon pre-minced garlic, 1 teaspoon garlic flakes, ½ teaspoon granulated garlic, or ¼ teaspoon garlic powder.

Base Recipe Variations

Remember that this is a base recipe, so the goal is for you to customize it to your taste! Keep it simple or spice it up!

Use these additional ingredients for even more flavor and texture.

  • Pesto: use homemade or store bought. Leave out the herbs and olive oil if using.
  • Vegetables: use diced red pepper, roasted corn, shredded carrot, sun-dried tomato, mashed sweet potato, or whatever sounds good to you.
  • Cheese: we recommend strongly flavored cheeses because just a little bit goes a long way. Asiago, blue, feta, goat, gorgonzola, and parmesan are some of our favorites.
  • Green Chiles or Chipotles in Adobo: substitute ½ diced jalapeño pepper or ¼ serrano pepper, seeds removed.
  • Spices or Dried Herbs: use chili powder, coriander, cumin, paprika, turmeric, or your favorite spice blend. You can also substitute fresh ginger for a bright and fresh kick.

When selecting ingredients, it can be helpful to think of a cuisine or flavor profile you are trying to achieve. Italian, Mediterranean, Greek, Thai, Chinese, Indian, Mexican, and Latin are just some cuisines to consider. Use your creativity and imagination! 

Turn these quick bean burgers into sliders by reducing the patty size to ~2 inches in diameter.

Not ready to give up the meat in a burger? Try out our bean and beef burgers base recipe!

Want some burger flavor inspiration?

Use these recipe variations for inspiration, then have fun exploring other flavors, ingredients, and textures!

Equipment Recommendations

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Is this bean burger recipe healthy?

These easy bean burgers are a much healthier choice than their greasy counterparts. Unlike beef, beans provide fiber and no saturated fat. The featured ingredients in this plant-forward recipe are beans, extra virgin olive oil, and fresh herbs.

Beans

Beans of all varieties contain plant-based protein, complex carbohydrates, fiber, vitamins, and minerals. These nutrients promote gut health, decrease risk of developing heart disease, cancer, and diabetes, and promote a healthy weight. Beans are a key component of longevity diets around the world.

Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Extra virgin olive oil is a key component of the Mediterranean Diet. It contains high amounts of heart-healthy monounsaturated fatty acids and polyphenols which may reduce inflammation. In this recipe, it replaces the saturated fat typically found in 100% beef burgers.

Fresh Herbs

Not only do fresh herbs add a pop of freshness and flavor to a dish, but they add nutrition too! Herbs are rich in essential vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients that promote health and help fight diseases.

Learn more about health benefits of different foods and ingredients or in our book, To Your Taste!

Serving Suggestions

Depending on the flavor combinations you choose, serve these bean veggie burgers with traditional ketchup and mustard, lettuce and tomato, a tasty pesto spread, or pickled veggies and curry ketchup. Pair with roasted vegetables and a salad to make a beautiful Whole Life Plate

Serve leftover patties crumbled on baked tostadas or quesadillas, or on top of a salad drizzled with vinaigrette.  

How to Store and Reheat Bean Burgers

Cool leftover burgers completely, then store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 7 days. 

Leftover burgers can also be frozen for up to 3 months. To freeze, place on a baking sheet and freeze for 1-4 hours. Once the burgers are partially frozen, transfer to a freezer-safe bag or container. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before heating.

To reheat, place bean burgers on a pan and place in a cold oven. Turn the oven to heat to 350ºF. Once the oven hits 350°F, your burgers should be warmed and ready!

Want more bean-based dinner recipes?

Try out these delicious recipes!

Hummus Pizza Base Recipe

Baked Tostadas Base Recipe

Healthy Burrito Bowl Base Recipe

Vegetarian Meatballs Base Recipe

bean burgers base recipe on a whole grain burger bun topped with tomato and lettuce on a wooden cutting board

Bean Burgers Base Recipe

This is one of our base recipes. Plant-forward diets should not be restrictive or boring, which is why we created this delicious bean burger base recipe! This simple bean burger provides plenty of flavor, moisture, and quality protein to satisfy your plant-based burger cravings.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 6 burgers

Ingredients
  

Base Recipe

  • ½ Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil or cooking spray
  • 2, 15-ounce cans low-sodium beans, drained (~3 cups)
  • ½ cup Panko bread crumbs
  • 2 Tablespoons – ¼ cup chopped fresh herbs
  • 2 Tablespoons – ¼ cup finely diced onion or shallot
  • 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 small garlic cloves, minced (~1 teaspoon)
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • Dash pepper
  • 6 whole grain hamburger buns, lightly toasted

Mix-ins to YOUR taste

  • ¼ cup pesto (replace oil and herbs)
  • ¼ cup diced fresh or cooked vegetables
  • ¼ cup shredded or crumbled cheese
  • 4-ounce can diced green chiles or
  • 2 Tablespoons minced chipotles in adobo
  • ¼-2 teaspoons spices and/or dried herbs

Instructions
 

  • Preheat oven to 425ºF. Lightly brush a baking sheet with oil or use pan spray.
  • Place beans in a large mixing bowl and mash until almost smooth or leave slightly chunky.
  • Add bread crumbs, herbs, extra virgin olive oil, onion, eggs, garlic, salt, pepper, and optional mix-ins. Mix until combined.
  • Create 6 patties with your hands or with the help of a portion scoop and place on the pan, spaced at least 1” apart.
  • Cook 8-10 minutes or until cooked through and slightly brown on the edges. Serve on toasted buns with toppings to YOUR taste. Enjoy!

Notes

You can also cook these burgers on the stovetop. Heat a skillet over medium. Add oil to the pan. Once the oil is shimmering, add the patties. Cook 3-4 minutes per side.
 
Toppings to YOUR taste
 
Check out these recipes for flavor inspiration!
Indian Veggie Burgers
Vegetarian Lentil Burgers
Southwest Burgers with Black Eyed Peas
Keyword Bean Burger

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