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Kidney bean, pumpkin seed and lentil burgers

Posted Dec 07 2011 12:35am

The other week I had the most delicious lunch at a local vegan café, Bliss . Bliss is located just below my massage therapist’s room. I arrived a little early to meet my friend and had a chance to explore the little vegan supplies section of the café. I love exploring different ingredients and this sort of window shopping always sets ideas simmering in the back of my head. Although I don’t ‘believe’ in superfoods, I loved looking at the raw cacoa and coconut spread, lacuna powder and other bits and bobs from far flung corners of the world.

When it came time to order, the menu was fresh and not nearly as stodgy as I’d feared. I ordered the Bilss Wrap. What came out was a beautifully presented wrap, stuffed with salad and laced with vegan-mayonaise and beetroot chutney. The thing that really struck me was the lentil, almond and kidney bean patty. It was light yet nutty and the fat from the mayonnaise and inclusion onf pumpkin seeds in the wrap meant that it wasn’t stodgy at all. I made a mental note to play around with the kidney bean, pumpkin seed combo.

I soaked and sprouted a few cups of kidney beans the next day but, due to bad planning on my part, had to throw them in the freezer before we left to go to a friends wedding in Melbourne. When I came back I pulled them out, ready to use in my burger idea and to toss through salads. What I didn’t realise was that raw sprouted kidney beans contain toxins! Obviously the beans I had in my salad didn’t kill me. However, they did leave me with a belly ache and not much appetite for the rest of the day. The rest of the beans were promptly popped in a pot of water and cooked. I won’t make that mistake again.

When making these burger patties, my usual ferocious appetite hadn’t quite returned, so I decided to borrow the idea of using the burger patties as buns . For this reason, I intentionally made my patties nice and thin. For my filling, I chose to poach an egg white but, some cooked chicken breast would be equally as tasty.For a more substantial meal, you could make these at a double thickness.

Kidney bean, pumpkin seed and lentil burgers

Makes 6 patties or 3 burgers

  • 3 egg white puffs
  • 3 cup salad greens
  • 1 tomato, sliced
  • sweet chilli sauce
  • low-fat hommus


  • ½ cup dried red lentils
  • 1 ½ cups water
  • 1 tbsp chia gel (or 1 egg beaten)
  • ½ cup pumpkin seeds
  • 1 cup cooked red kidney beans, drained (canned is fine)
  • 2 tsp oregano pesto (or 1 tsp garlic and 1 tsp finely chopped oregano)
  • 2 tsp tomato paste

To make the patties

Place the lentils and water in a saucepan. Bring to the boil and simmer, covered for 12-14 minutes, until the lentils are soft. The cooking time varies depending on the age of the lentils.

If you don’t have any chia gel in the fridge, follow these instructions. Alternatively you can use an egg.

Set aside about 2 teaspoons of pumpkin seeds and place the rest in a coffee grinder or food processor and grind to form a powder.

Preaheat a heavy based frying pan to a medium heat and brush/spray with cooking spray if needed.

Use a potato masher to mash the kidney beans. Add the pumpkin seed, pumpkin seed meal, chia gel, cooked lentils and tomato paste and stir to evenly combine.

Divide the bean mixture into 6 equal portions and form into patties. Cook, two at a time, for about 3 minutes each side or, until golden.

To assemble the burgers

Use the patties as a buns. Stuff with salad greens, lettuce, tomato, chilli sauce and hummus.

To make the egg white puffs, place the whites in a microwave safe container and microwave, on high, for 30 seconds at a time until done.

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