Use Up Canned Veggies To Make Easy Meat-Free Burgers

No matter who you are, odds are that you have a stock of canned veggies somewhere in your kitchen that you don't know when — or if — you'll get to. If you're preparing for the apocalypse, by all means, save them. But, when the time comes and you are left limited to the means of your bunker, you should know that those cans are a key ingredient for making easy, meat-free burgers. They'll be so good, you may want to plan on doubling your rations. For now, at least, you're free to use them up.

Blitzed in your food processor with legumes, eggs, and some flour and dolloped into a frying pan, those canned veggies that have been sitting in your pantry can take on an entirely new life — and the flavor options are as endless as the veggies you have to choose from. Canned corn, beets, carrots, potatoes, mushrooms, artichokes, sundried tomatoes, and more can be blended up with your preferred legume and any seasonings or herbs you so choose to create a flavorful, meat-free fritter perfectly fit for a couple of burger buns.

A good veggie burger needs more than just veggies

Aside from the aforementioned legumes, eggs, and flour, a good veggie burger requires more than just veggies. Most importantly, it needs flavor. We broke down 12 ways to add flavor to your vegetarian burgers, and considering that using fresh ingredients is one of them, you'll want to pull out all of the stops when you're using canned ingredients. There's one particularly impactful flavor that's especially important to include when you're preparing a plant-based alternative such as a veggie burger, and that's umami.

Umami is a category of taste that can be described as savory, earthy, and even sometimes funky. It's most characteristic of meat and meat-based broths — especially beef — however, it's also commonly found in fermented foods. So, aside from all of the veggies, legumes, and nuts, to make a veggie burger that's tasty, you're going to need to give your mix a boost of umami. To do that, you'll want to include some umami-rich ingredients, such as soy sauce, miso paste, MSG, kombu, or nutritional yeast.