Perfect Vegan Black Bean Burgers
This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.
Black bean burgers tested to perfection! These vegan burgers have a satisfying meaty texture and are full of flavor. Plus, they don’t fall apart or need to chill before cooking. Slather them with a quick lime mayo and all your favorite toppings.
After testing dozens of veggie burger recipes over the years, I’m happy to say that these burger babies really are the one, the only, the best vegan black bean burger I’ve made.
“Perfect” — it’s a word I seldom use to describe things in my life, mostly because I am the total opposite of a perfectionist. Aiming for casual imperfection is much more my style!
These hearty burgers are easy to make in a food processor and full of good-for-you ingredients. And most importantly, they are absolutely crave-worthy.
While I don’t follow a completely vegetarian diet, I have been eating less and less meat. But every once in a while I love nothing more than to indulge in a juicy beef or lamb burger.
A really good black bean burger fits the bill when I want to take a break from eating meat.
If you’ve been searching for a foolproof homemade vegan burger recipe, I hope you’ll give this one a try.
I based the recipe on one from Pamela Saltzman’s latest cookbook. If you don’t follow her online cooking classes, you’re missing out!
Easy black bean burgers
In my experience, the tricky part about making black bean burgers from scratch is getting the texture just right. You want them to hold together while forming the patties, so they don’t crumble or feel sticky.
It’s also important that they aren’t too mushy to griddle — nothing is more frustrating than trying to flip one over and having it fall apart.
What I love about these burgers is that they are a dream to handle. Once the patties are formed you can stash them in the fridge for a few days or freeze them for a month or so.
When you’re ready to eat, heat up some oil in a nonstick skillet and brown them on both sides, about six minutes total.
When you take a bite you’ll find they have a satisfying meaty texture that stands up to layering with all your favorite burger fixings.
The recipe is vegan and gluten-free, using a minimalist list of ingredients. If you tend to stock a healthy pantry, you probably already have everything you need to make them right now.
Basic black bean burger ingredients
- Black beans: You need two 15-ounce cans or 3 cups cooked black beans.
- Cooked quinoa or rice: 1/4 cup of either one works, so you can put your leftovers to use. If you don’t want to cook a batch of quinoa just to make these burgers, you can substitute 1 3/4 cups chopped button or cremini mushrooms (about 4 ounces)
- Ground flax: Ground flax seeds are an egg substitute that helps to bind the burger mixture. You can use one egg instead if you’re not concerned about keeping the recipe vegan.
- Walnuts: Choose unsalted raw nuts.
- Oats: Old-fashioned or quick oats work well.
- Seasonings: Spices, white, red or brown miso, garlic, salt and fresh green chili pepper.
How to make black bean burgers
Start by whisking together the flaxseed, water, miso and vinegar in a medium bowl.
- To cook, sear the patties in oil in a large nonstick skillet.
- Serve with buns, toppings and condiments
Storing and freezing options
- The black bean burgers can be formed and stored in the fridge for up to 5 days, cooked or uncooked. You can also cook them frozen, but they may take a few more minutes to brown and cook through.
- They’re freezer friendly. Place the patties on a small rimmed baking sheet in the freezer until frozen, then transfer to an airtight container or freezer bag and keep frozen for a month. Defrost overnight in the refrigerator.
- Warm them up before serving in a 350 degree oven for 10-15 minutes.
Tasty condiments to go with black bean burgers
The burgers taste smoky-spicy with cumin, coriander and cayenne (or ground chipotle if you love it) and they’re easy to serve as is with the tangy lime mayo.
Along with sliced onion, avocado, salad greens and maybe a slice of tomato you’ll have yourself a classic burger sandwich.
If you’re feeling adventurous and want to build an even better bean burger, try one of these sauces on your burgers!
You can also skip the buns and serve the burgers on some greens with your favorite sauce or salsa.
FOLLOW ALONG: Follow me on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest for all the latest recipes and content.
Perfect Black Bean Burgers with Lime Mayo
- ½ cup (116 g) vegan mayonnaise
- 1 tablespoon (15 ml) fresh lime juice
- 1 teaspoon hot sauce
- 2 tablespoons (30 g) fresh chopped cilantro
- ¼ cup (40 g) ground flaxseeds
- 3 tablespoons (45 ml) water
- 1 tablespoon (15 g) red or white miso
- 1 tablespoon (15 ml) cider vinegar
- 1 cup (100 g) unsalted raw walnuts
- 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- ½ teaspoon ground cayenne or chipotle pepper
- ⅔ cup (104 g) old-fashioned oats
- ¼ cup (50 g) cooked quinoa or brown rice
- 1 small jalapeno or serrano pepper, chopped
- 2 15-ounce cans (550 g) (3 cups cooked) black beans , drained well
- Avocado oil or other high-heat vegetable oil
- 6 burger buns (gluten-free if desired), toasted
- Red onion slices
- Sliced avocado
- Lettuce, baby greens or sprouts
- Cucumber slices
- Tomato slices
- Green sauce
Make the limo mayo
- Stir all ingredients together in a small bowl. Keep refrigerated up to one week before serving.
Make the burgers
- Whisk together the flaxseed, water, miso and vinegar in a medium bowl. Set aside to thicken while you prepare the rest of the recipe.
- Pulse the walnuts, garlic, cumin, coriander, salt and cayenne in a food processor until they the walnuts are finely ground. Add the flax mixture, oats, quinoa, chili pepper and 1 1/2 cups of the black beans. Process 15-25 seconds, or just until the mixture comes together in large clumps.
- Transfer the mixture to a bowl and stir in the remaining black beans. Lightly coat a 1/2-cup measuring cup with oil. Scoop up enough of the burger mix to pack the cup, then tap out onto a small sheet pan or plate to make 6 mounds. Gently form each one into a patty. At this point, you can cook the burger patties or cover and refrigerate up to 2 days ahead.
- Cover the bottom of a large nonstick skillet with oil and place over medium-high heat. Cook the patties 3 minutes per side, or until browned.
- Spread both sides of the buns with the lime mayo. Put a burger on each bun and top with desired garnishes.
Karen’s Notes and Tips
- Make ahead: Stash the formed uncooked patties in the fridge for a few days. To freeze them for a month or so, place the patties on a small rimmed baking sheet in the freezer until frozen, then transfer to an airtight container or freezer bag and keep frozen for a month. Defrost overnight in the refrigerator.
- Instead of a food processor, you can use a blender to grind the nuts and spices in step 2 of the recipe, and mash the half the beans with potato masher or large spoon.
- If you don’t want to cook a batch of quinoa just to make these burgers, you can substitute 1 3/4 cups chopped button or cremini mushrooms (about 4 ounces)
Hey, I’m Karen
Creator of Familystyle Food
I’m a food obsessed super-taster and professionally trained cook ALL about creating elevated dinners with everyday ingredients. Find simplified recipes made from scratch and enjoy incredibly tasty food! Read more about me here.
flax– is it for binding, texture or both? can the flax be replaced with an egg, or does the fiber/ texture add too much? never have them on had— though chickens I do. 🙂
have you tried them in the oven? also I see the text mentions a grill pan and nto the recipe- regular saute pan should be fine?
Hi Jane – Thanks for the great question. The flax is for binding. If you’re not concerned about keeping the recipe vegan, you can use one egg instead of the flax mixture. For cooking, I recommend using a non-stick skillet or saute pan (not a grill pan with ridges) — that will help them sear well on each side without sticking. Once they’re seared, you could cool and reheat them in the oven.
I see garlic in the insurrections but not the ingredient list and am wondering how much garlic and is it cloves or powdered?
Hi Roxanne – It should be 1 finely chopped garlic clove. It was a typo – thanks for noticing that! I updated the recipe.
These look so good! I’m always on the hunt for the perfect veggie burger 😅
Just curious if I could sub out walnuts for sunflower or pumpkin seeds? (Tree nut allergy 🙁 )
Hi Zack – sorry about the allergy! I haven’t tested this recipe with seeds (yet) so not sure how they would turn out.
Thank you, Karen. I’m going to try these tomorrow. I really like that you can freeze them.
This was an absolutely delicious recipe