I wish I had a good excuse for making these Sweet Potato Quinoa Burgers, but to be completely honest…I just wanted them. I mean, doesn’t the title just say it all? These burgers just wanted to be made and I was the gal to get the job done. Someone had to, right? By the way, who says “gal” anymore? Sheesh!
If I had a quarter for every time I came up with a new way to use sweet potatoes, I’d have a quarter. Or maybe two. Ok. I’d probably have a whole roll of quarters by now. There’s sweet potato french fries, sweet potato dinner rolls. Who knows what else could be coming around the corner. Maybe sweet potato ice cream?
Hmm…or maybe not.
Either way, it’s about time this lowly root vegetable had its day. I mean, the poor plant spends the majority of its life underground. It seems like it should be quite a celebration when it’s finally on the other side.
What I love about these Sweet Potato Quinoa Burgers
There’s a lot to love with this one, but let me start with quinoa. It’s one of the few grains that are a complete protein. Most grains require combining with another complex carbohydrate to complete that accomplishment, but the tiny quinoa grain does it all on its own. You go, Keen-WAH! But even with the “you complete me” grain in the mix, we’re still including some chickpeas. That means each bite of this delicious veggie burger has a bunch of protein. Maybe I should have called these Power Veggie Burgers!
A “bunch” is a technical term. I’d explain it to you but it’d take me too long.
Oh wait. It means “a lot.”
Back to the recipe. In addition to quinoa and chickpeas, this recipe also includes kale and sweet potatoes too. Here’s a breakdown of some of the healthiness this sandwich provides you:
- Sweet Potatoes are rich in Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Beta-carotene (especially with the inclusion of fat from the cashews), Potassium and Fiber just to name a few.
- Quinoa delivers a powerful punch of protein, fiber, folate, iron and much, much more.
- Gluten-free – OK, this is technically not an ingredient, but whether you’re sensitive to gluten or not (All the hip kids are though), it’s probably not a bad idea to have some meals that are free of gluten. You know, here and there.
- Chickpeas provide something we’re all looking for, satiety. People who eat chickpeas report feeling satisfied with their food and as a result, eat less throughout the day. You GO Chickpeas! Maybe that’s because the garbanzo bean (the chickpea’s other name) is chockfull of fiber. Just 2 cups delivers all the fiber you need in an entire day! Chickpeas also deliver nutrients such as manganese, folate, iron, and protein. All good stuff.
- Kale is like the rockstar of healthy foods. I’m thinking Eddie Van Halen string bending good. That’s saying a lot. But to be more specific, kale is a cruciferous that’s loaded with Vitamin K. Mmkay? So why should you care about the K? Because Vitamin K helps your body fight off things like heart disease, Osteoporosis, and the big C (cancer). Also, people who get the most Vitamin K from their food have a tendency to fend off Type II Diabetes. I’m good with that. I could go on all day about Vitamin K, but let’s get back to Kale. In addition to a whole set of alphabetized Vitamins, Kale also boasts folate, protein, omega-3 fats, and fiber. See? Definitely vegetable rockstar status!
- Ground Flax Seeds are one of the best sources of omega-3 fats. They also deliver on selenium, B1, and copper, in addition to other goodies.
- Cashews are relatively low fat compared to most nuts, and over 80% of the fat they contain is the unsaturated kind. Eating nuts like cashews have been linked to lower risk of cardiovascular disease. And the great news is, you don’t have to eat a lot of them to get that benefit. Cashews also come assembled with copper, magnesium, and zinc.
So, these Vegan Sweet Potato Veggie Burgers are probably the healthiest veggie burgers on the planet, but is that all? I mean, isn’t there anything else that matters besides being healthy? Well, now that you mention it, there is something else that’s pretty important when it comes to eating. Taste. Don’t worry, I’ve got that covered too. Not only is this recipe super healthy, it’s pretty darn delicious too. You betchya. I can say that because my husband used to live in North Dakota. They say that kind of thing there. Along with “holy buckets.”
Just think about that one for a minute. It’s pretty hilarious.
I hope you love these Sweet Potato Quinoa Burgers as much as we do! You know what’d make me happier than a kid in a candy store? If you’d make this recipe and share a photo with me using #NamelyMarly on Twitter or Instagram. That’s what friends are for!
- 1 medium sweet potato
- 1½ cups gluten-free crackers
- 15 oz can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
- 2 tablespoons green onions, sliced
- 2 tablespoons raw cashews (or sub with almonds or pecans)
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup nutritional yeast flakes
- 1 cup cooked quinoa, drained and pressed with a paper towel to remove excess liquid
- 1 tablespoon ground flax seeds
- 1 tablespoon corn starch
- ½ - ¾ cup corn meal (as needed for desired texture)
- ½ - 1 cup baby kale, chopped
- 1-2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced (optional)
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- Scrub and wash the outside of a sweet potato. Use a fork to stab the potato several times and then place it in the microwave and cook for two minutes. Remove from the oven and allow it to cool. After it's cooled, chop into large cubes.
- Place the gluten-free crackers in a food processor and pulse until a course flour is formed. Pour half of this on a plate and set aside.
- To the remaining half of the cracker crumbs, add the cubed sweet potatoes, drained chickpeas, green onions, cashews, garlic powder, salt, nutritional yeast flakes, quinoa, ground flax seeds, and corn starch. Pulse for a couple of seconds and then use a spatula to push the ingredients back down. Pulse again for several seconds. I like to leave some texture in the burgers so I'm not trying to puree it down to a paste, just creating a cohesive mass.
- Add about a half cup of cornmeal and pulse for another second or two to combine. Let that mixture sit for about 5 minutes. If it's still too sticky to handle, add another quarter cup of cornmeal and pulse again. Add the chopped kale and stir to distribute throughout the mixture.
- When you're ready to cook the burgers, turn your oven to 200F and pour a tablespoon of vegetable oil in a skillet over medium to medium-high heat. Form into patties and press one or two garlic clove slices onto the outside of the patty, then dredge it through the remaining crumbled crackers to create a nice coating.
- Place 3 or 4 patties on the skillet (depending on the size of the pan) and cook for about 5 minutes on one side. Sprinkle salt and pepper on the uncooked side of the patties. Flip the patties and cook on the other side until the patties have firmed up and are brown on both sides.
- Place the cooked veggie burgers on a pan and place that pan in your heated oven or toaster oven. Repeat cooking the remaining veggie patties using process described above until all the burgers are cooked, allowing each about 10 minutes to stay in the oven before serving.
- Serve on toasted buns with dairy-free mayo, pickles, onions, and sliced tomatoes.
You might also want to check out these other delicious veggie burgers:
- I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, Richa is the Queen of the veggie burger and these Sweet Potato Chickpea Peanut Burgers prove my point!
- Of course you have to try Kathy’s Easy Sweet Potato Veggie Burgers of LunchBoxBunch. They’re a must!
- Sweet Potato and Black Bean Veggie Burgers by Cookie + Kate — thanks for another great vegetarian recipe, Kathryn!
- Sweet Potato Burgers by Gaby of What’s Gaby Cooking — looking good, Gabby!
- Want something besides a sweet potato burger? Well, you could try a couple of my other veggie burger recipes. Like this Blueberry Black Bean Burger or this Vegan Big Mac Sandwich.
Whatever veggie burger floats your boat, enjoy!