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4.24 from 116 votes

Black Bean Burgers

There can never be enough ways to get beans into your daily meals. This is one of the best. Serve on toasted 100% whole-grain bread with all the fixings. These burgers freeze well, so consider doubling the recipe so you’ll have them ready for just-thaw-and-indulge moments.
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 304kcal
Author: Dr. Michael Greger & Robin Robertson from The How Not to Die Cookbook

Ingredients

  • 1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup walnut pieces
  • 1 1/4 inch piece fresh turmeric (or ¼ teaspoon ground) grated
  • 1/2 cup red onion chopped
  • 1/3 cup mushrooms chopped
  • 1 1/2 cup cooked or 1 15-ounce BPA-free can or Tetra Pak salt-free black beans rinsed and drained
  • 2 tablespoons tahini or almond butter
  • 1 tablespoon ground flaxseeds
  • 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
  • 1 tablespoon fresh parsley chopped
  • 2 teaspoons white miso paste
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon Savory Spice Blend

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 375ºF. 
  • Pulse the oats, walnuts, and turmeric in a food processor until they are finely ground. Add the onion, mushrooms, beans, tahini, and flaxseeds and pulse until well combined. Add the remaining ingredients and pulse to mix well. 
  • Pinch some of the mixture between your thumb and index finger to test whether it holds together. If the mixture is too wet, add more oats. If the mixture is too dry, add a little water, 1 tablespoon at a time. Transfer the mixture to a work surface and divide into four equal portions. Shape each into a patty about ½-inch thick and transfer to a plate. Refrigerate for 30 minutes. 
  • Line a baking sheet with a silicone mat or parchment paper and arrange the burgers on it. Bake until hot and lightly browned, turning once, about 25 minutes. Serve hot, as desired.
Discuss

63 responses to “Black Bean Burgers

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  1. I think the nutritional values were miscalculated by using that amount of dry beans. A 500 calorie burger didn’t sound too healthy to me so I checked it in a recipe calorie calculator and got closer to 300 per serving with cooked beans.

    1. I think you are right – I calculated about 342 calories per burger. Great nutrition though, not empty calories like some other 500 calorie burgers out there.

    2. Oh thank you, we will check it out again! We are using a cool new tool for the calculation but want to make sure it’s accurate!

  2. I made these today and they’re great. Decent texture and the colour is good if a “traditional colour burger” is called for.

    I actually made 8 patties that were smaller and likely thinner as I was feeding them to my 3 children (all under 8yrs); cooking time was reduced. They loved them, although full disclosure is that I put some tomato ketchup on them for the boys and my girl had a little Vegenaise. Served them without baps alongside homemade roast potatoes, broccoli and carrots.

    My wife and I have just had one with dinner and it’s a thumbsup from us.

    Thanks Dr G, looking forward to the cooking book and more recipes.

    1. Stlll a lot of sodium, even if the miso or soy has healthy effects. If someone has hypertension or kidney disease not a good idea. Again any suggestions as to substitutes for some of the miso?

  3. I turned these into meatballs instead to have with pasta and they were a delight! Will try them in burger form now I’ve found burger buns that don’t have a tonne of unhealthy ingredients!!

  4. These are fantastic. My 4 and 7 year olds loved them. We had them without buns and the kids just dipped them in ketchup and ate them like finger foods. We had them with a side of homemade baked fries, and a tomato &dill salad. The next day we crumbled them into a garden salad…resulting in my 7 year old eating the whole salad. yay Dr Gregor!!

  5. I made these this week for my fiance and I and I must say, they are incredible. My fiance (who grew up in a meat and potatoes family and pours salt on everything) said he’d take them any day over a Bubba burger . The only disclaimer I’ll say is that if you’re doubling the recipe make sure you don’t overload your food processor. I did and the ingredients got very thick and tough to work with. I added a tiny bit of certified olive oil but that’s the only modification I made. NO SALT! And they taste amazing ..so much flavor. I also cooked them longer because I want a nice crispy outer layer. Amazing !!

  6. I made these last night, from the How Not to Die cookbook. They did NOT look like the picture. The flavor was fine, but mine came out of the food processor looking like a thick paste. The recipe reads as if the onion and mushrooms should be chopped before adding to the dry ingredients. Next time, I’ll add them as larger pieces. Any other tips on how to get it to resemble the patty in the photo, where you can see pics of the actual ingredients?

    1. We made them for the first time tonight and had the same result; a thick paste describes exactly what the texture was like after the food processor, so I wonder what we’re doing wrong. The burgers were dry. The flavor was disappointing. The picture looks so juicy! :(
      I suspect we may have processed it too long. I’d really like someone to tell us what we did wrong.

  7. I made these tonight and cut the walnuts and tahini in half to cut the fat (used 1/4 c walnuts and 1/4 c more oats, and added more chopped mushrooms), and they still turned out wonderful. I wonder if I used the full amount of walnuts and tahini if they’d come out more like the picture (the moist-looking juicy burger in the pic made me want to make these)? Mine look a bit drier and lighter in color than the picture, but they held together perfectly and crisped up nicely in the oven. They are nice and crisp outside and moist inside. High five!

  8. Tried this yesterday and mine looked like yellow cookies, quite dry. Would love to know how you got the texture and juicyness of the one in the picture?

  9. Sodium 365mg PER BURGER?

    ARE YOU KIDDING? THIS IS MORE THAN TWICE THE RECOMMENDED SODIUM INTAKE PER SERVING FOR A HEALTHY PERSON…

    1. Not sure if flax is used here to help bind… A good sub for that is psyllium husk, ground chia or simply bread crumbs (store bought or your own). I’d even try cooked quinoa.

  10. I have been perfecting a healthy black bean burger recipe for the last couple years, and this one was slightly better than mine AND less messy, which makes me a little bit angry. But at least now I can stop working on mine.

  11. Are you kidding? I made this tonight. Our kids tried it and were like, “this is really bad. ” “You say that about everything,” said I. And then I took a bite. I wanted to hurl. I spit it out. Yuck! Brownish yucky paste Play-Doh patty. I must have really screwed this one up somehow. I still feel like I’m gonna hurl.

  12. Oh my–what a mess. All those great ingredients wasted, I fear. I have a thick, gross-looking paste. First time I have tried, and I was very careful, so don’t know what happened.

  13. I’ve tried many veggie burgers and these are my go-to now. They hold up well and are quite tasty. Especially since it doesnt call for salt or oil. For company I do add a little salt and always nutritional yeast. I’m skeptical about the negative reviews.

    FYI: comparison is a killer in all aspects of life. A wholesome plant food recipe will not be like the other.

  14. The recipe says to put in the refrigerator after you form them. Doesn’t it make more sense to refrigerate before you form them, so they hold together easier? What is the point in refrigerating right before you put them in the oven?

    1. Burgers will dehydrate in the refrigerator and are more likely to have a bit of crunch on the outside if they are refrigerated before cooking. You can refrigerate them for longer and turn them over to make them have more of a meat texture.

      1. I would also think that letting them rest allows for the oats to soak up the extra juice and make the burger firmer.

  15. These came out really well but I will say that I didn’t follow the instructions. I like bean burgers on the “chunkier” side, where you can still see what’s in it, so I processed things in batches to make sure nothing would wind up chopped finer than I wanted it. I put the oats, walnuts, and turmeric together and processed them to the consistency I wanted, then moved them to a bowl. I then processed the onions, mushrooms, and parsley together, and added them to the bowl. I processed the beans by themselves and added them to the prior batches along with the pastes/powders (tahini, miso, flax, spices, etc), stirring it all together with a spoon. For those of you having trouble with these coming out as a kind of thick paste, this might work out better for you.

  16. As others have noted, this recipe comes out extremely dry and paste-like. I’m wondering whether there is an ingredient or instruction missing. I added 1/4 cup water but the finished product was an unappealing pink-Beige. Would love to hear from the chef that developed the recipe.

  17. Can we keep the uncooked burger “meat” in the fridge longer and how long? We make 3 servings of the black bean patties each week and they reheat great but we love them fresh even more. I was thinking we could make the burgers and leave half it in the fridge to cook later in the week – if that would work.

  18. Great recipe! although i made a lot of variation but worked. i wasn’t able to use any nut because my grandson takes burgers to school and they are nut free. i didn’t put mushroom because my daughter is allergic to them. so basically for one part of drained beans i used half the oats. in the food processor put oats, fresh cilantro (we love cilantro and gives great flavor), onion powder, garlic powder, ground turmeric, nutritional yeast, ground flaxseed, paprika and salt.Once all combined, to desire consistency, add drained beans and water as needed (i didn’t use any other ingredient ) and mixed it till it looks like a paste but only because my grandson likes it like that. Well, now we are ready to eat our burger! Thank yo so much!

  19. This is a great recipe. Some people complained that the mixture was very pasty and didn’t give the desired result – the trick is to pulse the ingredients gently or even just finely chop by hand. Over-processing will not work with these ingredients. I think the recipe instructions didn’t highlight this element enough, hence the thick paste…I pulsed the first ingredients gently, removed them, pulsed the onions separately a little longer and the mushrooms got a very quick gentle pulse. Everything else I mixed in manually. The result is a beautiful tasty burger or meatballs. Thanks nutritionfacts team!

  20. This was my first time making a veggie beurrer. I liked this recipe with slight modifications based on what I had on hand; oat bran instead of rolled oats, a teaspoon of tamari since my white miso was moldy, for the mushrooms I used mostly frozen shitake with a few edamame also, almond butter and not tahini, my own cooked carmelized onions since I had no red onion, regular paprika and then added a bit of chipotle. Next time I think I would add more spice. Topped with carmelized onion onion, tomato and some salsa. I baked them on a grill pan so they even had the lines like from a barbecue.

  21. When I made these burgers last night I was disappointed when they came out of the oven. However, after a day in the refrigerator, the flavors seemed to evolve. The burger I just ate has me craving another. Brilliant flavor and texture!!!!! I will double the recipe next time Thank you

  22. I made these today and they are excellent! I have tried other bean burgers and they have ALL been so dry and tasteless. I did add more spice (doubled the garlic and onion powder and was very generous with the other spices). I did not add the miso (white) because the ingredients for what I had stated soy protein and there was also glucose syrup. and the burgers still tasted great.

    The recipe says four burgers but they turned out pretty large for the bun so next time, I will divide into 6 to fit the Ezekiel Hamburger Bun size.

    I am very happy with this recipe!

  23. There is a discussion in the Nutritional Facts Facebook page about whether it is ok to copy down a recipe from the How Not to Die Cookbook and give it to a friend to make. Many (who are not lawyers, obviously) are saying even to copy it by hand and give it to a friend is a copyright infringement. I find it hard to believe Dr. Greger would have a problem with this. I have the e-book, the hard copy, and the paperback copy. But they are saying I can not share a recipe with a friend. Seriously? What would Dr. Greger say?

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