Friday, January 28, 2011

Chipotle Black Bean Burgers

Protein - the big debate when it comes to eating less meat, right?  Although I've done the research and know that I get plenty of high-quality protein from an "Almost Vegan" diet, I still hear the 'voice of dinners past' in my head asking if I'll be ok.  To compensate, I'm pretty careful to include good protein in all of my meals.  This was one of the first vegetarian meals we started eating.  It was just a tweak on a classic that we loved.  Rice and beans make a complete protein along with some added fiber and nutrients!  The latest research shows that you don't have to eat 'complete proteins' together - our bodies are smart enough to put them together even if eaten during different meals...but it's just nice to know they're all there!

These burgers are unique and tasty (...and husband-approved)!  I've heard them called 'delicious Mexican food on a bun.'  The Chipotle Chili Powder is a spice I found at the grocery store - feel free to add more if you like an extra kick!  If you have regular chili powder instead, I'm sure that would work.  We serve these with Alexia Sweet Potato Fries and a green salad...and eat it at least once a week!  Rather than comparing it to your Banzai Burger, consider it a new, refreshing dinner idea...I think you'll be pleasantly surprised!

**The patties freeze perfectly with a little wax paper between them, so make a big batch and pull them out for an easy weeknight dinner!

1/2 cup cooked short grain brown rice
**to make your rice stickier, add more water once it's done and cook again!
1 can organic black beans, drained and rinsed
1/4 cup diced, sauteed onions plus olive oil for the pan
1 flax egg (1 tbsp. flax seed meal mixed with 2 tbsp. water, let sit for 10min to set-up)
1/2 tsp. cumin
1/4 tsp. chipotle chili powder
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 cup whole wheat breadcrumbs (use rolled oats if you're eating gluten-free)
**optional, but yummy: 2 tbsp chopped cilantro or green onions

Orowheat Sandwich Thins or your favorite whole wheat bun
Avocado (smashed up and generously spread onto your bun)
Ketchup, Mustard, BBQ sauce, salsa?
Romaine Lettuce

1. Cook your brown rice
2. Dice onions and cook them in a pan until they're nice and soft
3. Mix up the flax egg and let it sit (this really helps hold your burger together, so don't leave it out!  I would also advise against using an egg, as I'm not sure it would get fully cooked)
4. Drain black beans in a colander and rinse.  Allow a few minutes for them to dry out - too much moisture could cause the burgers to fall apart (which would be so sad!)
5. Mix the remaining ingredients together in a bowl
6. Add the rice, beans, flax egg and onions
7. Smoosh everything together with your hands.  This really is the best way to do it!  Smash it all together until it is really well mixed.
8. Make patties.  This recipe makes 4 patties.  I usually divide it up, roll each patty into a ball and then smash it on a plate or flat surface.  It might stick, so be careful when picking it up.
9. Heat around 3 tbsp of oil in a pan on medium, then add your patties.  Flip once they are golden brown on one side.  Add more oil if you think you need it!
10. Slide your burger onto your bun and dig in!

Today's Ingredients:
Lundberg's Organic Short-Grain Brown Rice - Costco
Alexia Sweet Potato Fries - Costco
Organic Canned Black Beans - Fred Meyer
Golden Flax seed Meal - Fred Meyer
Orowheat Sandwich Thins - Fred Meyer
Organic Romaine Leaves - Fred Meyer or Trader Joe's
Organic Ketchup - Trader Joe's
Whole Wheat Breadcrumbs - PCC, Whole Foods, or make them yourself!

1 comment:

  1. I liked this, but a few tweaks that I am going to try are: making the mix an hour ahead of time so flavors and textures can blend, and I will try chipolte peppers in adobo sauce instead of powdered chiplte. I will also make sure I have Jalapeno peppers in the fridge for the sandwich!