The People's Reciplex

Chickpea Mushroom Burgers

One of my goals for this summer was to come up with a really good, from-scratch, grill-able vegetarian “burger.”  I’ve experimented a lot over the years with this, and the difficulty is finding something that will hold up on the grill.  This recipe (tweaked from a vegan cookbook’s recipe for “chickpea cutlets”) is the best I’ve come up with so far – the trick seems to be in the wheat gluten, which is a more effective binder than other grains, beans, or even eggs.  But I’m sure it can be improved.  If you try it, let me know if you find any ways to make it better!

serves:  4


8 oz. mushrooms (any type), finely chopped (I used a food processor)

1 cup cooked chickpeas

3 tablespoons olive oil

1/2 cup bread crumbs

2 tablespoons soy sauce

3 cloves garlic, finely chopped or pressed

about 1 tsp. chopped fresh thyme, or 1/2 tsp. dried

about 1 tsp. chopped fresh sage, or 1/4 tsp. dried

1/2 tsp. Hungarian paprika

1/2 cup vital wheat gluten

olive oil for brushing before grilling or panfrying


In a medium-sized skillet, cook mushrooms in 1 T. olive oil over medium heat with a pinch of salt until well-colored and most of the moisture is evaporated, 10-15 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a large mixing bowl, mash chickpeas together with 2 T. olive oil until no whole chickpeas are left.  Add the remaining ingredients, including the cooked mushrooms, and knead for about 3 minutes, until strings of gluten have formed.  The texture should be moist but firm (if it seems too mushy, add a bit more bread crumbs or wheat gluten, if it’s really dry, add a few drops of water, soy sauce or vegetable stock).

Form into 4 patties (burger shaped if you want to serve them on a bun, or “cutlet” shape if you want to eat them with a knife and fork).  Brush with olive oil on both sides, grill until browned on both sides and warm throughout.  Or, to fry in a pan, add a thin layer of olive oil to the bottom of a heavy skillet, cook burgers/cutlets on each side for 6-7 minutes, adding more oil as needed.

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This entry was posted on Saturday, July 31st, 2010 at 6:17 pm and is filed under entrees, vegetarian.

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