Thursday, August 25, 2011

Quinoa Veggie Burger

photo from
This is the newest recipe I've been enjoying, the quinoa veggie burger, and it's a favorite for sure. SO delicious! I love eating vegetarian, and James love his meat, so we try to compromise and meet somewhere in the middle. I was really excited about this quinoa (pronounced keen wah) burger. I'll admit though, not that I eat many veggies burgers (or burgers ) but I expected it to be kind of burger-ish, since it has the word  "burger" in the title. If I was going to be honest though, it's not. SO YUMMY, don't get me wrong, but James and I decided they are better called veggie patties. It's less decieving that way ; )

red and white quinoa

These veggie patties are so amazing and so good for you. Quinoa is really a super food and is full of phytonutrients, antioxidants and can even help balance your blood sugar and help lose weight.  It actually cooks and tastes like a grain (it's kind of nutty in flavor), making it an excellent replacement for grains that are difficult to digest or feed candida. It's gluten-free as well. Here are just some of the amazing health and nutritional benefits:
  • Complete protein. Quinoa contains all 9 essential amino acids that are required by the body as building blocks for muscles.
  • Magnesium helps relax your muscles and blood vessels and effects blood pressure. Quinoa contains high levels of this vital nutrient.
  • Fiber. Quinoa is a wonderful way to ensure that you consume valuable fiber that eases elimination and tones your colon.
  • Manganese and copper. Quinoa is a good source of these minerals that act as antioxidants in your body to get rid of dangerous cancer and disease-causing substances.
Compared to other grains, quinoa is higher in calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, potassium, iron, copper, manganese, and zinc than wheat, barley, or corn.
Studies have shown that quinoa has documented health benefits too! Quinoa, in its whole grain form, may be effective in preventing and treating these conditions:
  • Artherosclerosis
  • Breast cancer
  • Diabetes
  • Insulin resistance

File:Chenopodium quinoa in flower.jpg
this is how quinoa grows, isn't is beautiful?

So anyways, those are just a few of the great things about this grain. Back to the recipe! You can find quinoa in almost any bulk or health food store these days, we often find it on sale at Loblaws or Zehrs. This recipe is a satisfying, filling dinner and is even better the next day! We often double the recipe and freeze some of the patties for quick, easy and healthy dinners.

Quinoa Veggie "Patties"
adapted from Chatelaine
  • 3/4 cup uncooked quinoa (about 2 cups cooked)
  • 1 tsp grapeseend or olive oil
  • cremini mushrooms or any other mushrooms, coarsely grated (1 cup)
  • 1 cup coarsely grated zucchini
  • 3/4 cup coarsely grated carrot
  • 1 onion, minced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 3 tbsp cornstarch (or oatmeal)
  • 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
  • one vegetable stock or chicken stock cube
Cook quinoa according to package directions, adding stock cube, about 14 min or until all water is absorbed. Do not over cook! Transfer to a large bowl.
  1. Heat a large, wide non-stick frying pan over medium. Add oil, then mushrooms, zucchini, carrot, onion and garlic. Cook until soft, about 5 min. Add to quinoa. Stir in egg, cornstarch and cayenne.
  2. Heat the same non-stick frying pan over medium. Firmly press quinoa mixture into a 1/2-cup measuring cup. Turn and release into pan. Gently press to shape into a patty about 4 in. wide. Repeat, cooking 2 patties at a time. Cook until golden and warmed through, about 4 min per side. Top with tahini sauce and roasted plum tomatoes.
  • Portobello “Bun”:

    Barbecue portobellos on a greased grill over medium for 5 min per side.
  • 159 calories
  • 5 g protein
  • 27 g carbohydrates
  • 4 g fat
  • 3 g fibre
  • 180 mg sodium
James usually eats his with a bun and I eat mine with a portbello. Make SURE you use the tahini sauce!! I was a little unsure about it at first but it really just takes it to the next level. The favors togethter are so amazing. These burgers are a great base and fairly flexible as to what ingredients you add. I had more carrots that zucchini, so I just evened out the amounts. Needed to use up some green onions, so I tossed those in as well. Didn't quite have enough quinoa, so I substituted the rest with couscous. VERY adaptable! If it's too moist (it should be very moist anyways) add more cornstarch. Not sticking? just add another egg.

This is such a fanastic recipe! Try it topped with roasted red peppers and chipotle sauce. MMMM. Enjoy your delicious meat free meal. You won't even miss it! (in the words of meat-loving James) : )

1 comment:

  1. Mmmm. Who would have thought! It's wonderful, especially on a very restricted diet that you can eat something SO nutritious AND tasty even. AND it is gluten free. Woo Hoo! I'm in for this new meal. Thank you for the inspiration! :)