Can't Be Beet Burger

Salivating for a summer burger but looking for a delicious, vegetarian alternative? Beet patties make great burgers and sliders, terrific for the barbecue. Top them off with thick slices of heirloom tomato, onion, or grilled pineapple, lathered with my “Easy-Cheesy” sauce or some vegan mayo with Sriracha. Make a double batch and freeze them for a rainy day!


As a plant-based chef and cooking instructor, I love providing delicious, satisfying, and nutritious dishes that drive down the inflammatory processes that lead to weight gain and chronic disease. Even our most common, humble, and inexpensive vegetables (like those in these burgers) are packed with fiber, phytonutrients, antioxidants, and healthy plant proteins that our bodies thrive on.

By / Photography By Cathy Katin-Grazzini | July 10, 2017


Peel beets and coarsely grate in a food processor or by hand. Steam until almost tender. Set aside.

Dry roast cumin seed, if using, until just fragrant. Cool and grind to a powder in a spice/coffee grinder. Grind porcini and chili peppers to powders.

Drain/squeeze beets to remove any juices. In a food processor, combine beets, chickpeas, onion, garlic, tapioca flour, oats, salt, and pepper. Pulse to a coarse, shaggy mixture. Don't over-process.

Mix marinade ingredients.

In a bowl, add beet mixture and marinade. Combine well. Stir in the panko. Preheat a nonstick pan or grill over medium heat for 5 minutes.

Shape patties in a 3” mold and press to compact. Lower flame to low-medium. Cook 5 minutes on per side. They should be just lightly browned on each side.  Adjust flame accordingly. Remove from pan/grill to a cooling rack for a few minutes to firm up.

Build your burger, garnish with your favorite toppings, and DIG IN!

About this recipe


  • 2 cups coarsely grated beets from 1 medium yellow + 1 medium red beet, or 1 large red beet
  • 2 cans low-sodium chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1 medium red onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons tapioca flour
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt (or to taste)
  • 2 cups whole wheat or gluten-free panko
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon blackstrap molasses
  • 4 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon tamarind concentrate (available online or in Indian grocery)
  • 1 teaspoon ground sumac (available online or in Middle Eastern grocery)
  • 1 teaspoon tomato paste
  • 3 tablespoons smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin, preferably freshly roasted and ground cumin seed (available online or in Indian grocery)
  • 3 tablespoons porcini powder from 1/2 cup dried, sliced porcini (create your own fresh spices by grinding dried mushrooms or chili peppers in a spice or coffee grinder)
  • 1/4 teaspoon chipotle powder or other ground chili
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