Monday, August 15, 2011

Vegan Guacamole Bacon Burger

Rarely do I crave a burger but something about the delicious combination of guacamole plus bacon plus burger just sounded right to me.

And when it comes to 'alternative' burgers, I'm always on the hunt for new and interesting ingredients and ways to get vegetables to stick together and sit on a bun. Enter teff. My mom gave me a package of teff because she is always finding interesting, albeit random things for me to try.

Turns out teff is gluten free, high in protein and fiber and delicious. And it makes a mean veggie burger. It's one of my new favorite things.

These burgers are super delicious and very good for you. The combination of teff and fresh veg is a flavor and textural win. These burgers would also be great cooked and served in lettuce wraps or tortillas, if you're watching your carb intake. I would even venture to pop them on the grill because they are that sturdy.

And what makes a burger better? Guacamole. And bacon. Smart Bacon that is. I love Lightlife's Smart Bacon. For a burger, for breakfast, for a snack. I also found that the bacon is super delicious when dipped in the guacamole. As you're cooking your burgers. Just a hint.

Yield: about 8-10 burgers, depending on size

3 cups vegetable or mushroom broth
1 cup teff
1 teaspoon plus 1 teaspoon curry powder
1/4 teaspoon fresh cracked pepper
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
3 cloves garlic
1 small walla walla sweet onion
about 1/2 cup crimini mushrooms, chopped fine
about 1 cup broccoli, chopped fine
4 fresh sage leaves
1/2 teaspoon fresh cracked pepper, or more or less depending on your taste
about 1/2 teaspoon sea salt, or more or less depending on your taste
About 3/4 cup baby spinach leaves, chopped fine
About 1 1/2 cups panko breading
Hummus - optional... this is for the bun
Fresh tomato, sliced
Rocket or green leaf lettuce
Vegan mini buns... or big buns

Bring the broth to a boil then add teff, 1 tsp curry, salt and pepper, stir and cover. Simmer with the lid on, stirring intermittenly, until the teff has soaked up all the liquid.

In a large skillet, heat a little olive oil on med/high heat and saute garlic and onion for about 2 minutes. Add mushrooms, stir and continue to cook another 2-3 minutes.

To your skillet, add broccoli, 1 teaspoon curry powder, sage, salt and pepper. Reduce heat a bit, stir to combine well then cover and let cook for another 3-5 minutes.

Once broccoli has had a chance to 'sweat', add spinach, stir and cover again then reduce heat to low. At this point, taste your veg mix and add more salt and/or pepper as needed.

When spinach is just wilted, turn off heat and let rest.

When teff is done, transfer it to the skillet with the veg and stir well to combine and ensure everything is evenly distributed. Add about 1/2 cup panko to your mix and combine. Add panko in 1/4 cup increments until you have a good firm mixture. Reserve about 1/2 cup panko for your patties.

Form about 1/4 cup scoops of the mix into a ball then press it into a patty. Roll the patty in panko. Repeat for all mix.

In your skillet or on a flat pan, heat a bit of olive oil or Earth Balance on medium heat. Place patties on hot pan and cook until brown. Flip and repeat.

Note: the patty mix should be fairly firm, allowing you to make easy patties and cook without falling apart.

While your burgers are cooking, use a flat pan and medium heat to cook the Smart Bacon.

When your patties are done you're ready to start building your burgers!

Start with the bottom bun: spread a little delicious hummus on the bottom bun and top with rocket or green leaf lettuce. Put burger patty on top then tomato on top of that. Top tomato with a good spread of delicious guacamole and top that with the Smart Bacon. Spread a little more hummus on the top bun and you're ready to go.

Open faced, for presentation, if you like. Otherwise top that burger and get to work!

Goes great with a fresh green salad or slightly al dente green beans.



  1. Yay! At last! A use for the teff I've had sitting in the pantry for the past 3 months. No longer will it stare plaintively at me when I dig around for other grains. Thank you!

  2. Wow.....that is one amazing looking burger. Love it.

  3. GP... good! I am so glad I could help... and I know how you feel :) Enjoy!

    Briarrose... thank you!

    Julea... yes!! :)



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