Veggie Burger - Meatless Lent Recipe

Well, Fat Tuesday was yesterday and I hope you had some King Cake! For many people this is a time for sacrifice and over the next 40 days they will be giving up something. I know people who cut down on television time, cut alcohol, sugar, etc. Although in my religious tradition we are not asked or required to observe Lent, I do have many friends who are observers or simply use this time to abstain. I am not personally going to give up anything in particular in observance of this time but I am certainly going to continue to develop my relationship with God, honor my body as a temple and eat as healthily as possible.

I am aware that part of the Lenten tradition is to refrain from eating meat every Friday. I am not a regular meat eater, my meat consists of seafood which I absolutely love and the occasional bit of buffalo chicken wing skin. Yes, I know. Not healthy but buffalo chicken wings were the last meat I ate almost 20 years ago and occasionally it still calls my name! But I digress.  I want to share this wonderful recipe for a veggie burger that I know your family is sure to love. I won’t go so far to say they will forget about meat but this burger is so tasty and delicious, I bet they will ask for it when it isn’t Lenten season!

The base of this burger is chickpeas. Add the yummy flavors of spinach (I used Marketside Organic from Walmart) and carrots and you have a winner!

For this recipe I used a can of chickpeas and to reduce the sodium (I am trying to keep it at a minimum) I rinsed my peas before using them in the recipe. And since I really enjoy the heat, I used Mrs. Dash extra spicy (a sodium substitute). In addition to keeping my sodium intake in check I am also watching my carbs. Since this recipe calls for panko I decided to forego bread and simply use romaine lettuce as my “bun.”

I topped my burger with tomato, avocado and some siracha (more spice!) and I literally inhaled it! My mom loved it too so it wasn’t just me. With mom’s stamp of approval I know I have a winner. I hope that this recipe is something you can enjoy with your family during Lent but also anytime you are looking for a nice addition to your meal rotation! All of my ingredients for this recipe were purchased at Walmart so this is certainly an extremely affordable meal too!

Monster Veggie Burger

1 15-oz. can chick peas (garbanzo beans), drained, rinsed
1 egg
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1 tsp. smoked paprika (I didn't use this or the coriander I simple used Mrs. Dash Spicy)
1/2 tsp. ground coriander
1/2 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. coarse (kosher or sea) salt
1 c. chopped fresh spinach
1/2 c. shredded carrot
2 tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro
3/4 c. Progresso panko bread crumbs
2 tbsp. canola oil (I used olive oil)
Toppings, as desired (avocado halves, cilantro leaves, cucumber slices, tomato slices, sweet pepper strips, lettuce leaves)
Sauces, as desired (spicy mustard, Sriracha, ketchup, citrus vinaigrette)
In food processor bowl, place chick peas, egg, garlic, smoked paprika, coriander, cumin, and salt. Cover; process with on-and-off pulses about 45 seconds or until nearly smooth. Stir together bean mixture, spinach, carrot, and cilantro until well combined. Stir in bread crumbs. Shape mixture into 4 patties, about 3 1/2 in. in diameter and 1/2 in. thick. In 10-in. nonstick skillet, heat 2 tbsp. canola oil over medium heat until hot. Cook patties in oil 8 to 10 minutes, turning once, until brown and crisp. Serve veggie burgers stacked with toppings and drizzled with sauce.
Makes 4 servings.

Recipe provided by Betty Crocker


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