Vegan Main Dishes/ Vegan Recipes

Quinoa, Lentil, and Mushroom Burgers

Quinoa burger2

If anyone you know says that they could never go vegan because they’d miss hamburgers, just serve them these. Not that these are at all meat-like nor aspire to be. These burgers, with high-protein quinoa and lentils, plus flavorful mushrooms and plenty of seasonings, are hearty and satisfying. Serve them with your favorite fixings, or just on their own as a high-protein embellishment for the plate.

Though these are easy to make, it may be a bit too much to embark on after a long day of work. It’s a perfect Sunday project, though—have them for dinner, then serve them again the next day or pack them for lunch (these are good at room temperature, too). They freeze well, too.  To streamline the process, cook the quinoa and lentils ahead of time (unless using canned lentils).

Makes 8 to 10 burgers

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 8 ounces white or cremini mushrooms, cleaned and coarsely chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups well-cooked brown or green lentils (from about 3/4 cup raw;
    or use one 15-ounce can, drained and rinsed)
  • 2 cups cooked quinoa
  • 1/2 cup marinara sauce or salsa
  • 2/3 cup quick-cooking oats or quinoa flakes
  • 1 teaspoon sweet or smoked paprika
  • 2 teaspoons mesquite or other grilling seasoning (see note)
  • 2 teaspoons all-purpose salt-seasoning blend (such as Frontier or Mrs. Dash)
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
To serve:
  • Whole-grain buns, pita breads, or English Muffins
  • Any of your favorite condiments (mustard, ketchup, relish, additional salsa,
    shredded lettuce, baby spinach, sliced tomatoes, raw or cooked onions)

Preheat the oven to 425º F.

Heat the oil in a medium skillet. Add the onion and sauté over medium heat until translucent. Add the garlic and continue to sauté until the onion is golden.

Add the mushrooms to the skillet and cover. Cook until wilted, then drain the liquid from the skillet and transfer the mixture to a food processor, followed by the cooked lentils. Pulse on and off until the mixture is finely chopped, but not pureed.

Transfer the mixture from the food processor to a large mixing bowl. Add the remaining burger ingredients and mix together well.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Use a round, 1/2-cup measuring cup to make perfect burgers. Grab a level scoop of the mixture; invert onto the parchment with a sharp tap to release it, then flatten into a 1/2-inch patty with the bottom of the measuring cup. Repeat with the remaining mixture.

If you don’t have a round 1/2 cup measuring cup, you can improvise by using any sort of 1/2 cup measure, and shaping into burgers once on the parchment paper.

Bake for 15 minutes, then carefully flip each burger, and bake for an additional 10 to 15 minutes, or until golden and firm on each side. Remove from the oven and serve at once with the bread and condiments of your choice.

Quinoa burger2

Note: Barbecue or grilling seasonings are great to have on hand. They have big, bold flavor without being overly spicy. They’re readily available in the spice section of most supermarkets.

Nutritional Information: 
Per serving (without bun and garnishes): 214.9 calories; 4.2g fat; 61.4mg sodium; 205mg potassium; 36.3g carbs; 5.8g fiber; 0.6g sugar; 9g protein

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  • Reply
    Delia Villasante
    February 8, 2014 at 2:25 am

    Thank you, this is a great recipe, just great.

  • Reply
    February 9, 2014 at 1:09 am

    I Picked Up All Ingredients Tonight To Make This Boigah Tomorrow. Yummmm!

  • Reply
    February 9, 2014 at 2:36 am

    I will be eating vegan & vegetarian 2 times a week to start.

    Thanks for your the terrific recipes I have from Facebook.

    Health & Happiness,


  • Reply
    Rhonda T
    February 9, 2014 at 1:32 pm

    I love some of your recipes, but wish that the nutritional information and calorie break down was also included.

  • Reply
    February 9, 2014 at 6:20 pm

    Do you have nutritional information for these quinoa lentil burgers? I just made em and would like to know. Thank you!

    • Reply
      February 9, 2014 at 6:33 pm

      Julie and Rhonda, it would be prohibitive for me to try to do the nutritional stats but I’m working on finding a widget to install that would help people input the ingredients and figure out the data quickly and easily. Thanks for your interest and patience!

  • Reply
    Marie Trillingham
    February 9, 2014 at 9:29 pm

    I will be trying these tomorrow. They look great. I eat whole food plant based diet & try to limit sugar & oil so will sauté in veggie broth. Thanks for sharing.

  • Reply
    February 10, 2014 at 6:53 am

    Where do you find quinoa flakes? Can you substitute whole quinoa?

  • Reply
    February 10, 2014 at 5:34 pm

    Laura, you can find or order quinoa flakes from natural foods stores. Quick-cooking oats are much more readily available.

  • Reply
    February 11, 2014 at 8:41 pm

    Oh my these are good. My goal is to improve my health this year and these are the best vegan burger I’ve had. My husband who hates quinoa & lentils loved them!

    • Reply
      February 11, 2014 at 8:46 pm

      How awesome, Geni! Thanks so much for your feedback.

  • Reply
    March 1, 2014 at 8:06 am

    To get calorie & nutritional information you can join myfitnesspal & create a recipe. Its easy & the app is free to download. It will also give you a breakdown of your nutrition information for the day/week/month.

    I plan to make these burgers & when I do will post the nutritional info & calories per burger. I just haven’t had time…

  • Reply
    March 1, 2014 at 8:47 am

    I created the recipe in the app and here are the nutritional facts for each serving (based on serving 8):

    Calories: 219
    Fat: 5.4g
    Sodium: 89.7mg
    Potassium: 155.4mg
    Carbs: 49.7g
    Fiber: 8.4g
    Sugar: 6.1g
    Protein: 11.6g
    Iron: 21.1mg

    Im more anxious to try this recipe since the sodium is so low! My ready made veggie burgers (Gardein) are almost 600mg of sodium per burger! That’s alot!

  • Reply
    March 1, 2014 at 8:51 am

    Jen, thank you so much! I will have to look into that app. And hey, I’m also impressed with the stats on this burger — low in fat, calories, and sodium; high in fiber, protein, and iron — makes me want to make it again soon!

  • Reply
    March 30, 2014 at 5:34 pm

    It looks amazing wanna try this tomorrow;-)
    Kind regards
    A vegie from Denmark

  • Reply
    March 30, 2014 at 5:41 pm

    By the way what is it on top of the burger (not the onion). It looks like cheese?

    • Reply
      March 30, 2014 at 5:52 pm

      Michael — no cheese, real or otherwise! What you’re seeing is the tan quinoa; this burger was made with a combination of red and tan; it can be made with either or both.

  • Reply
    March 30, 2014 at 8:12 pm

    Can you substitute something else for mushrooms? I just really don’t like them…

    • Reply
      March 30, 2014 at 8:29 pm

      Sandy, you can sub a veggie you enjoy — red bell pepper, chopped kale, corn kernels — use about one to one and half cup’s worth, and add at the same time as you would the mushrooms.

  • Reply
    steve kutra
    March 30, 2014 at 9:25 pm

    What is quinoa? Thanks.

    • Reply
      March 30, 2014 at 9:27 pm

      Steve, quinoa is a tasty, high-protein grain food (technically a seed) that’s mildly flavored and quick cooking. Everyone loves it these days, for those reasons as well as its versatility. Learn more about quinoa:

  • Reply
    March 31, 2014 at 8:01 pm

    Delicious and easy to make (but yes, time consuming). I was only able to get 6.5 burgers out of my batch. Maybe I needed more mushrooms.

    • Reply
      March 31, 2014 at 8:30 pm

      Karen, you must have made very large burgers! The ingredients add up to 10 cups worth or so, and dividing that into half cupfuls should come out to 10 burgers, or a little less depending on how tightly the half cup measures are packed. I’m glad you found these tasty, though!

  • Reply
    June 21, 2014 at 1:29 pm

    I’ve made these twice now and they are my favourite veggie burger ever. I want to take them to a BBQ this weekend and will need to grill them rather than bake in the oven. How hot should the BBQ be and how long on each side? Will it turn out the same or should I stick to oven baking them?

    • Reply
      June 21, 2014 at 1:35 pm

      Vanessa, I’m worried that these would fall apart on a grill, as the quick heating might just make them crumble. I’d suggest baking them ahead as usual, and than just heating them on the grill, but they’d need to be on a solid surface like foil or a grill basket. I’m so glad you like these!

  • Reply
    October 14, 2014 at 1:10 pm

    I made these last night, with one change. I didn’t have enough lentils in the house, so I subbed peeled, split chick peas for 2/3 of the lentils. I formed the burgers using a hamburger press (9 burgers, which fit perfectly on my trays).

    They turned out delicious. I had one for lunch today: 1/2 crumbled atop my salad, with a garlicy, Greek dressing and the other half I ate plain.

    • Reply
      October 15, 2014 at 4:00 pm

      So glad these worked out well for you, Laurie. I love the idea of combining the lentils with chickpeas. Brilliant!

  • Reply
    Sandy Carroll
    June 28, 2015 at 1:39 am

    Hi , am nearly finished making these but just wondering do I need to pre-cook the quinoa flakes or quick oats or just add them raw. 🙂

  • Reply
    June 8, 2017 at 12:52 pm

    These were delicious! I changed up the recipe a bit and made a homemade tomato sauce. I sauteed onion, garlic, and one ear of corn then added 2 tomatoes pureed with a little water. I seasoned this with dried basil, parsley, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. I simmered for about 30 minutes while my lentils boiled until most of the water had boiled away. I also added half a sweet red bell pepper. Yummy!

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