Crash Test Vegetarian

Vegan to Omnivore outreach program

Our Favorite Veggie Burger

on January 14, 2012

Like many foods, veggie burgers vary wildly based on tastes.  This happens to be our favorite recipe, adapted from one that was shared with me by Katie at Shamrock Vegan.

Don’t be intimidated by the list of ingredients.  Odds are the only two things that you don’t have in your kitchen are TVP and Vital Wheat Gluten for binding (optional).

We combine the dry team in Ziploc baggies (except the gluten) then just add the wet ingredients later on when we’re ready to make them.  My (omnivore) husband and our foster baby (12 months) both love the hell out of these burgers.  Oh, and if you’re not vegan or vegetarian, they just make a really cheap substitute, they’re worth trying!

veggie burger

In a bowl (or Ziploc bag if you’re wanting to save this for later), round up the dry team:
1 cup TVP
1/4 cup rolled oats
1/4 flour (any kind)
1/2 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp dried parsley
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp dry mustard
1 Tbsp Nutritional Yeast (optional)

If you’re going to make these now, go ahead and add the wet team:
2 Tbsp Ketchup
2 Tbsp Soy Sauce
1 Tbsp peanut butter, rounded (the spoon, not the peanut butter)
3/4 cup boiling water

Mix all the ingredients together and let set for 15-20 minutes while the TVP soaks up the water and seasoning.

Then kneed in
2 Tbsp Vital Wheat Gluten

Yes, kneed.  Just like you would have with meatloaf.  Only you’ll wanna do this a few minutes.  And you want it about the consistency of ground beef, so if it’s dry add a few Tablespoons of water.  Keep mixing this until the gluten is activated and starts pulling apart in strands.  There isn’t a ton of gluten, so don’t expect a lot, you just want to see it sticking together rather than crumbling apart.

Anyway, make patties and cook these bitches up!  You don’t want them too thick because you want them to cook all the way through and for the gluten to ‘set.’  But brown them up nicely, I cooked them on medium in the tiniest bit of oil for about 10-15 minutes per side.

5 responses to “Our Favorite Veggie Burger

  1. Traci says:

    I was going to try these veggie burgers out, please forgive me, I am new on the scene of ‘ meatless gourmet’ wonders! I am a ‘vegan, vegetarian, eating meat once a week sorta, don’t eat milk or eggs’ kinda person’! Hope that does not offend anyone, still trying to figure all this out 🙂 Now, I do have the Vital Wheat Gluten, believe it or not, had to buy a whole freaking bag for a tsp for my wheat pizza crust! Now, it is AMAZING wheat pizza crust, if you have ever heard of the Eat Clean diet, that is what I do and I ADORE this crust, but good God man, a tsp, lol! 🙂 Anyway, that being said, I have no idea what ‘1 cup TVP’ is? So, please forgive me for sounding like a complete freaking idiot but we have just discovered these burgers and my Hubby actually LIKES them and we get the frozen ones from Costco, but yours sound yum so thought I would try and make them! Try being the operative, I am be ‘ cooking challenged’! 🙂

    Am liking your site very much, so thank you! You are cracking my ass up 🙂

    Appreciate the help in advance!


    • Izzy says:

      Hi Traci,

      Thanks for your question. I posted a Wiki page in the post, but I realize it doesn’t help with the simplest part of the issue: Where to find it.

      TVP is short for Texturized Vegetable Protein and can be found in every health food store across America, probably without any exception. It’s the protein that’s left over when oil is extracted from the soy bean. Anyway, you find it in the bulk section and it’s very cheap and versatile, so I suggest getting a good portion of it. You can throw it in pasta sauce for a quick protein addition, you can make burgers of it, or taco meat.

      It has virtually no flavor, so it takes on the flavor of whatever you are re-hydrating it with. The steps in the post where you have to wait 15-20 minutes after pouring the boiling water over it, that’s the re-hydration process in action.

      Hope you try this out! Also, if you want to use up that vital wheat gluten try this.: It’s gooooooooooooooooooood.

      • Traci says:

        Thanks Izzy, I appreciate all your information. As I mentioned, this is all new to us, so I really appreciate your help! 🙂 The burgers look wonderful and I look forward to trying them out! 🙂 Neither of us are fans of tofu so trying the Vital for something like a mexican or pasta meal would be worth it, for the mushrooms, were just not working for my Husband! 🙂

        Thanks again!


  2. the RA Vegan says:

    I’ve been looking for a good veggie burger recipe for awhile and this one sounds good. My son is wheat free, though. I can use a gf flour but do you think I could get away without the vital wheat gluten?

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