Recipe of the Week | California Veggie Burger

California Veggie Burger | Photo Credit Randolph Graham

This burger has texture and taste and is not mushy in the middle. I think you’ll find that it has the perfect combination of black beans, veggies, bread crumbs, seeds, nuts, spices, and herbs. I say, Grill it!


1/3 cup warm water

3 tablespoons flax seed meal (Bob’s Red Mill is good)

14-ounce can black beans (drained and rinsed)

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

¾ cup red onion (chopped fine)

2 large cloves garlic (minced)

1 cup carrots (grated)

1/3 cup parsley (chopped fine)

½ cup sunflower seeds (toasted and chopped)

½ cup almonds (toasted and chopped)

2 tablespoons Tamari sauce

3 large egg whites (lightly beaten)

1 teaspoon chili powder

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1 teaspoon ground cumin

½ teaspoon salt

½ cup rolled oats (blended coarsely)

½ cup unseasoned bread crumbs



Whisk the water and flax seed meal in a small bowl. Cover and set aside.

Into a large mixing bowl, add the drained black beans. With a potato masher, mash the beans until 2/3 of the mixture is a bean “paste” while leaving about 1/3 of the beans mostly intact. Set bowl aside.

In a skillet, heat the oil on medium. Stir in the onion and garlic. Sauté for five minutes. Transfer the onion and flax meal mixtures into the bowl with the mashed beans. Stir in the carrots, parsley, sunflower seeds, almonds, Tamari sauce, eggs, chili powder, oregano, cumin, and salt. Mix to combine.

Using your hands, mix in the oats and bread crumbs until the mixture comes together. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before forming patties. Shape the dough into six tightly-formed patties. If you have a hamburger press, this would be a good time to use it.

Grill on medium high heat (about 400 degrees) for four minutes. Carefully flip over and grill for another three minutes. Cool the patties on a rack for five minutes before serving. This helps them firm up a bit. They may be refrigerated or frozen at this point if you are making these ahead.

Serve on a grilled bun with a setup of head lettuce leaves, tomato slices, and red onion slices. Add Randy’s Secret Sauce to the burger and serve with chips on the side.


Chef Randy’s latest book: Ojai Valley Quarantine Cookbook Now available on Amazon!

For additional recipes, see Chef Randy’s website at

Chef Randy has been a vegetarian for over 40 years and eats local and organic grain, fresh fruit, and vegetables as much as possible. He is known locally as the “Healthy Chef.” His column, Chef Randy, is syndicated in California newspapers. See his website at for more recipes.


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