Black Bean Quinoa Burgers

The problem with so many veggie burger recipes is the blah, mushy texture. Not these, boyee! Black bean quinoa burgers are high-protein and nutrient-dense. I added minced kale though you can use spinach, but kale gives a more interesting texture. Mashed black beans, chewy quinoa, crunchy almonds and a smidge of cheese (optional!) make sure these are firm and dense and while not tasting like a meat burger, they will at least give your molars something to get in to.


For instructions on how to cook quinoa, read/watch this post about quinoa salad. In fact, for time’s sake, why don’t you make the quinoa salad and cook an extra 1/2 cup of quinoa while you’re at it? Then use leftover quinoa to make the black bean burgers. That’s a pretty smart idea, right?

Be sure to drain the beans very well before mashing. If you don’t, your bean burger dough will be too soft and you’ll need to add a bunch more breadcrumbs to make up for it. You can substitute oat flour or gluten-free breadcrumbs, too, for gluten-free veggie burgers.

Black Bean Quinoa Burger Video – scroll down for recipe card

Black Bean Quinoa Burger Recipe – Printable!


Quinoa Black Bean Burgers

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4.7 from 13 reviews

  • Author: Hilah Johnson
  • Prep Time: 1 hour
  • Cook Time: 10 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Yield: 6 1x


  • 1/2 cup onion, fine diced
  • 1/4 cup jalapeno or bell pepper, fine diced
  • 1/2 teaspoon oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin seed
  • 1 cup fine chopped kale (packed cup, about 23 leaves)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1 1/2 cups black beans, cooked and drained
  • 2 tablespoons minced almonds or pepitas
  • 1/4 cup grated cheese (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup breadcrumbs, divided


  1. Saute the onion, pepper, cumin and kale in the oil over medium heat for a couple minutes until softened. You want some bite left in the onion, but the kale should be wilted. Remove from heat.
  2. Drain the beans and mash them coarsely in a bowl (a potato masher works well). Add the quinoa and vegetables and mix.
  3. Stir in nuts, cheese, Worcestershire, salt and 1 tablespoon of breadcrumbs. Stir to make a stiff dough. Add more breadcrumbs if needed.
  4. Shape into 6 patties of about 1/2 cup’s worth each.
  5. Coat in remaining breadcrumbs.
  6. Fry in light oil on a skillet for 3 minutes on each side until golden brown
  7. OR Bake on an oiled baking sheet at 400ºF for 20 minutes until heated.
  8. These may also be formed and frozen if you want to cook them later.


  • Serving Size: 1 patty
  • Calories: 270
  • Fat: 3.8
  • Carbohydrates: 45
  • Protein: 15

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If you like this recipe, also check out my original veggie burger recipe!



  1. Amanda on March 15, 2014 at 11:26 pm

    Just made these for lunch when I realised I had everything on hand…delish! I ate them as is with a sour cream sriracha combo on top. They crumbled a teensy bit coming out of the fry pan but overall bound really well considering there was no real wet ingredients. Will try the next batch in the oven and compare. Thanks Hilah!

    • Hilah on March 17, 2014 at 8:34 am

      I love it when that happens, Amanda! So glad they turned out. They are a little delicate, as you found out, but the sriracha sour cream sauce you added sounds boss. Thanks for writing!

  2. Sophie B on March 16, 2014 at 9:09 am

    thanks so much for this awesome recipe! i didn’t have quinoa, so i substituted white basmati rice instead! i also hada leftover baked sweet potato so i threw that in there too- added some cumin powder and love and bowchickawowwow it’s so yummy. love your style and presentation. thank you, thank you- sophie

    • Hilah on March 17, 2014 at 8:31 am

      Whoohoo! Sweet potato sounds like a yummy addition, Sophie! Thanks for writing and sharing your substitutions. 🙂 Glad you liked them.

  3. April B on March 16, 2014 at 7:13 pm

    We will definitely make these black bean burgers! Last time I made a veggie burger recipe was on New Years Eve and the flavor was great, but the texture wasn’t. Mushy- just like you said. We will let you know how these come out. Thanks.

    • Hilah on March 17, 2014 at 8:25 am

      Hi April!
      Hope you like these better. Let me know if you make any additions or substitutions! Veggie burgers are so fun to play around with.

  4. Steven on March 18, 2014 at 7:19 pm

    I was staring at a couple of cans of black beans in my cupboard and decided to give these a try, even though the concept of a bean burger seemed weird to me. I had to make a few substitutions because I was missing some ingredients and I was too lazy to go to the store. So for the veggies I used green bell peppers and green onions. I also didn’t have quinoa so I used oatmeal.

    This was surprisingly tasty. It reminded me of a bean burrito! This will be a good option when I want to take a break from eating meat.

    • Hilah on March 19, 2014 at 10:47 am

      Hi Steven!
      Happy to hear this! It’s good you decided to give it a try anyway. Green onions sound awesome. Hope these do become a regular recipe for you!

  5. Alyson on March 18, 2014 at 9:48 pm

    Hot damn, Hilah! I just made these. My jalapeno was small, so I used both it and a bit of red bell pepper. I forgot the salt, but I also used some grated 4-year-old cheddar, so I think that made up for the lack of salt! Delicious! I ate it as-is on a plate, but would have loved some sliced avocado on top. I can still taste it as I type this, and am looking forward to a repeat at lunch tomorrow!

    Love this and all you do!

    • Hilah on March 19, 2014 at 10:46 am

      Yay! This sounds so good with the aged cheddar, Alyson! Great thinking. So happy you liked them! Thanks for writing.

  6. Pier Komes on March 22, 2014 at 9:01 pm

    Not a big vegie kind of guy, but these were pretty good. Next time I think I will make them thinner to get a little less mush.

    • Hilah on March 23, 2014 at 8:22 am

      That’s good to hear, Pier! Glad you will give them another shot. Thinner is a great idea for a higher surface area ratio.

  7. The Other Randy on April 4, 2014 at 11:22 am

    If these were shaped into balls, do you think they’d work in a vegan spaghetti and “meatballs”?

    • Hilah on April 5, 2014 at 9:21 am

      Hey Randy! They might. I would try adding an egg (if you don’t care about them being vegan) or some vegan fake cheese to help bind them better. Then maybe dredge in flour before frying. Or baking might be best. I’ve not come up with a good vegan meatball recipe. The only one I have is vegetarian, technically, though it’s so loaded with cheese and eggs it’s hardly “healthy”.

  8. Taylor on April 5, 2014 at 6:59 pm

    I just finished my first, homemade burger. The flavor is incredible, no salt needed, whatsoever! However, the middle was a bit mushy, when I bit into it. Is that supposed to happen? Or did I add too much Worcestershire sauce?

    Topped it with hummus, mustard and cheese. Serve with a side of mayo-free potato salad and a peach wine cooler. C:

    • Hilah on April 6, 2014 at 11:09 am

      Hi Taylor!
      Great that it turned out well-flavored! You may have had a too-wet dough to begin with or you might just want to try making them a little thinner next time. Hope you try it again!

      • Taylor on April 8, 2014 at 1:50 pm

        I have! And I will. Even if they do fall apart, a little, I still like these. x3

  9. Beth on April 8, 2014 at 4:28 pm

    These are delicious! Please keep in mind that Worcestershire is NOT vegetarian because it contains anchovies. I subbed in my homemade vegan Worcestershire and they came out amazing 🙂

    • Hilah on April 8, 2014 at 5:56 pm

      Thanks, Beth! I mentioned that in the video and used a vegan Worcestershire, but neglected to note it in the written recipe. Glad you enjoyed them!

  10. Kathy Suthard on April 9, 2014 at 5:59 pm

    Dam Girl…….that was an awesome burger !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    More importantly………………can I get a close up of THE RING ???????????

    Tell your viewers whats goin on !!!!!!!

    Love you : )

    • Hilah on April 10, 2014 at 8:59 am

      YAY! 😀 Thanks, Kathy!
      Yes, we finally got my engagement ring made, even though we’ve already been married for over a year. Doin’ it backwards! The diamond is from my grandmother’s engagement ring and we had it reset. Now we need wedding bands. Ha, maybe in another year. 😉

  11. Andrea on April 18, 2014 at 8:07 pm

    When my favorite Yogi (that would be Adriene) recommends a veggie burger, I have to try it. It took me a little while, but there was stuff in queue already. I finally made this for dinner tonight and my non-vegan husband said it was the best black bean burger he ever had. I was generous with the jalapeno which I thought that was a great idea. I did end up sauteeing the garlic, I might not next time. I like the kick. Other than that, I made no other changes and even included the nuts and it was great. Thanks, Hilah.

    • Hilah on April 19, 2014 at 8:59 am

      Hallelu! So great to hear, Andrea! 🙂 Thank you for writing.

  12. Aria on June 12, 2014 at 12:24 pm

    Wow these are great , but I baked them and they did not stay together. Other than that they were great !!!! 🙂

    • Hilah on June 13, 2014 at 7:51 am

      Thanks, Aria! I’m guessing they fell apart when you tried to get them off the baking sheet? They are a little finicky – you have to make sure the dough is fairly sticky before cooking. Maybe add a little more water next time or chop the kale smaller. Hope you try them again!

  13. Linda Gaston on August 18, 2014 at 8:17 pm

    Hi Hilah,

    I cooked your quinoa black bean burger recipe today. It was AWESOME ! Today was really special because I had a number of “first time” experiences. I tried quinoa for the first time, saw you on youtube for the first time and actually made home-made bread crumbs for the first time (for your recipe).

    I thought your youtube video was hilarious and it really helped me to prepare the quinoa burgers.

    I followed your recipe but added a bit of curry powder and finger peppers for more kick !

    Thanks – we LOVED the quinoa burgers !

    • Hilah on August 18, 2014 at 8:34 pm

      You just made my night, Linda! Thanks so much for writing. The curry addition to the burgers sounds delightful! I’m really happy you found me and this recipe. 🙂

  14. Amy on September 2, 2014 at 9:29 am

    The burgers turned out great! My parents are vegetarian; they’re not vegan but they don’t eat eggs and most recipes I’ve seen call for an egg. Thank you so much for this recipe! Now I can make burgers that everyone will enjoy.

    • Hilah on September 2, 2014 at 11:48 am

      Wonderful, Amy! Thanks for the feedback. I try to keep most of my vegetarian recipes also egg-free since many people will eat dairy but not eggs. Glad you and your parents enjoyed the quinoa burgers!

  15. Denise on September 29, 2014 at 8:26 am

    Liked these a lot! I’m going to use the left over burger mix, add a bit more quinoa and cheese and use them to stuff poblamo peppers later in the week. Thanks for the great recipe.

    • Hilah on September 29, 2014 at 10:26 am

      Great idea, Denise! Thanks for sharing that.

  16. Therése Lööf on December 10, 2014 at 11:08 am

    Thanks Hilah for this delicious recipe! Just made them for dinner tonight and both me and my husband absolutely loved it!
    Will definately do it again and again and again 🙂

    BR from Sweden

    • Hilah on December 13, 2014 at 5:08 pm

      Hooray! So glad to hear you liked the quinoa burgers, Therese. Thanks for writing! 🙂

  17. Judy on January 22, 2015 at 12:11 pm

    Hi just wondering if I could substitute cashews for the almonds and nutritional yeast for the cheese or will this through off the texture and/or taste?

    • Hilah on January 22, 2015 at 1:46 pm

      Hi Judy,
      I think cashews would be fine, not sure about the nutritional yeast. Maybe just use a couple tablespoons rather than a 1/4 cup.

  18. Nadia on February 23, 2015 at 2:56 pm

    Finally got to try these today! Yummy yum yum! Thank you so much for giving me a perfect first day of Lent food!

  19. Linda on February 23, 2015 at 9:40 pm

    I made these again for the third time. They are still delicious ! I added a bit more almond slivers and curry power. This is an excellent recipe !

    • Hilah on February 25, 2015 at 7:56 am

      Yum! That sounds delicious, Linda.

  20. Susan R on June 21, 2015 at 8:28 pm

    Oh my goodness! This is unbelievably delicious! I used gluten free breadcrumbs and red quinoa, for more crunchy texture. I just ate it and I just want to eat again! It’s not easy to find a gluten free veggie burger, and this just answered my long search. I happened to watch you on my roku food channel. I found this website and everything is wonderful. Thank you so much!!!

  21. Susan R on June 21, 2015 at 8:30 pm

    Oh my goodness! This is unbelievably delicious! I used gluten free breadcrumbs and red quinoa, for more crunchy texture. I just ate it and I just want to eat again! It’s not easy to find a gluten free veggie burger, and this just answered my long search. I happened to watch you on my roku food channel. I found this website and everything is wonderful. Thank you so much!!! Sorry I have to redo, I forgot to put the stars, I wish I could rate 6 stars!

    • Hilah on June 22, 2015 at 8:08 am

      That’s wonderful, Susan! Thank you for sharing your success! 🙂

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