Combine Mushrooms And Chickpeas For Flavorful Vegetarian Burgers

When switching over to a plant-based diet, finding ideal meat substitutes takes a lot of trial and error. Although tofu and tempeh are typically recommended, it doesn't hurt to expand between those two ingredients. Many traditional meat dishes can be replicated using mushrooms or chickpeas.

The earthy, umami flavors of the two work perfectly in vegan and vegetarian recipes. While they don't replicate meat's exact taste — although mushrooms often come pretty close — both mushrooms and chickpeas possess their own savory flavor that makes them perfect for exploring dishes that are not animal-derived.

The two ingredients are versatile and malleable; while you can transform mushrooms into plant-based meat to make dishes like scallops or crab cakes, chickpeas can be turned into chicken nuggets or vegan taco meat. However, the two really shine when made into the perfect veggie burger. If you miss biting into a savory, juicy burger but don't miss the meat, mushrooms and chickpeas are the perfect alternative.

Tips for making homemade mushroom chickpea burgers

Often used in place of burgers, portobello mushrooms have a meaty, rich flavor that makes them the perfect choice for veggie burgers. To enhance this flavor, chop them into fine pieces and sauté them in olive oil with salt, minced garlic, onions, thyme, and oregano. Once the waters release and dry up, set them aside.

After draining and rinsing canned chickpeas, season them with salt, coriander, and rosemary, then add them to a pan with heated olive oil. Stir the chickpeas occasionally, allowing them to brown for around 10 minutes. When they've cooled down, add them to a bowl along with the mushrooms, and mash everything together.

While a whisked egg typically helps bind everything together, you can spring for cooked quinoa or chickpea flour instead. Breadcrumbs can also be sprinkled in for a crisp finish. Once the mushrooms and chickpeas are properly mixed together, form the mixture into small balls to make the patties. Heat oil in a skillet and press the patties into the pan, heating them on each side for around 4 minutes.