Black Bean Burger

5 from 65 votes

This Black Bean Burger recipe is made with salsa and pantry staples mixed in one bowl - a hearty, healthy protein-packed dinner with a Southwestern flare.

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read our disclosure policy.

This black bean burger is so full of flavor with a sturdy texture that doesn’t fall apart! With Southwestern flavors, this meatless burger recipe makes a delicious patty that is so good served on a golden bun and loaded up with your favorite toppings.

Large black bean burger on a bun with mashed avocado
Want to save this recipe?
Just type your email below and I’ll send it to you. And as a bonus you’ll get delicious new recipes from me!

This black bean burger is so simple to make! No need for a food processor; just mash the ingredients together in a single bowl. Plus, it’s made with a short list of pantry items and just a couple of ingredients from the refrigerator. With few simple ingredient swaps, it can be a vegan black bean burger recipe, too!

If you’ve ever eaten a black bean burger that tasted plain or mushy, or fell apart inside the bun, you know it can be tricky to get them just right. But this black bean veggie burger recipe includes tried-and-true tricks for a sturdy, flavorful patty that is easy to make and tastes amazing!

Recipe At a Glance

Cuisine Inspiration: Southwestern
Primary Cooking Method: Stovetop, grill, or oven
Dietary Info: Vegetarian, with vegan and gluten-free options
Key Flavor: Savory with southwestern flavors
Skill Level: Intermediate

Summary

  • Thick, sturdy patties: This black bean veggie burger recipe makes thick burgers that don’t feel mushy or crumble when you take a bite.
  • Grillable veggie burger: If you’ve ever tried to grill a homemade veggie burger, you know they can be tricky! These patties can be cooked on the stovetop, oven, or grill without falling apart.
  • Amazing flavor: The salsa and spices add so much flavor to these black bean burgers!
  • Nutrient-dense: Black beans are loaded with protein, fiber, and antioxidants for a hearty veggie burger that’s both delicious and nutritious.

Ingredients to Make This Black Bean Burger

Ingredients to make the recipe: black beans, salsa, beaten eggs, breadcrumbs, red onions, cumin and mustard
  • Black beans: Use cans of drained black beans or three cups of cooked-from-scratch black beans.
  • Salsa: Use any salsa you like–refrigerated or jarred, whichever level of heat you prefer.
  • Breadcrumbs: Along with the eggs, breadcrumbs help bind the black bean burger ingredients together, ensuring the sturdiest patty. You can use store-bought or make your own
  • Red onion: Adds texture and flavor. Feel free to substitute yellow, white, or sweet onion if that’s what you have on hand.
  • Eggs: An important binding ingredient that helps to hold the burgers together.
  • Mustard: Adds tangy flavor and lends a little extra binding power.
  • Cumin, garlic powder, salt, & pepper: Ground cumin adds that signature Southwestern touch that pairs so well with black beans. Garlic powder is another must-have flavor component, along with salt and pepper that help to enhance all of those flavors.
  • Olive oil: For when you opt to cook black bean burgers on the stovetop or in a grill pan.
  • Make it a vegan black bean burger recipe: For a plant-based patty, substitute the eggs with either mashed sweet potatoes or flax eggs. For the sweet potatoes, use ⅓-½ cup of cooked mashed sweet potatoes. To make flax eggs, soak two tablespoons ground flaxseeds in five tablespoons of water in a small bowl. Allow the mix to soak for about five minutes, until the consistency of a thin gel, before adding to your patty mixture.
  • Breadcrumb substitutes: All-purpose flour, crushed tortilla chips, or Panko breadcrumbs work well in place of the breadcrumbs.
  • Gluten-free option: Substitute oats or almond flour for the breadcrumbs.
  • Swap out the prepared salsa: You can use a ½ cup mix of tomatoes, onions, peppers, cilantro, and spices instead.

How to make black bean burgers firm

While I love black bean burgers, they can sometimes come out mushy instead of firm and compact. We’re looking for a thick burger that doesn’t feel mushy or crumble when you take a bite.

Well, I learned a little trick from Serious Eats, who shared that bean burgers are notoriously mushy because they’re primarily made of up already cooked things (except for the eggs). To solve that problem, bake the beans for a few minutes to dry them out.

Just rinse, drain, and thoroughly dry the beans, then spread them out on a baking sheet and bake them until partially dry. This solves the problem of how to keep black bean burgers from falling part.

How to Make This Black Bean Burger

The perfect black bean veggie burger recipe takes just three easy steps! First dry the beans. Then, mix together the patty ingredients with a fork or masher. Form your patties, then cook them on the stovetop, grill, or in the oven.

Dry the beans in the oven

  1. Spread the black beans on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
  2. Bake the beans until they’re partially dried out.
Collage showing black beans before and after mashing

How to make black bean burger patties

  1. Transfer the beans to a large bowl, and partially mash them, leaving some whole beans. Add the rest of the patty ingredients.
  2. Use a fork or masher to mix and mash the ingredients together. Refrigerate.
  3. Using your hands, form the mixture into patty shapes.
  4. Place the patties onto a plate and prepare to cook them using your chosen method (stovetop, grill, or oven)
Collage showing all the ingredients in a bowl before and after mixing

Cook the patties

  1. Cook the patties a few at a time, in a single layer on your grill pan, on the grill, or in your skillet.
  2. When the patties have browned on one side, flip and cook the other side. To bake in the oven, place the black bean burgers on a baking sheet and bake, flipping halfway through. 
Collage showing the burger patties before and after cooking

Tips for making the best black bean burgers

  • Dry out the beans first by baking them in the oven. This helps to transform the texture from a mushy one to a hearty one that doesn’t crumble after the first bite. You don’t want to dry them completely though, only partially to evaporate some of the moisture from the canned beans.
  • Drain the salsa before adding to the black bean burger mixture. The best way to do this is by placing the salsa in a mesh sieve and swooshing it around with a spoon until a lot of the liquid has drained and it looks more compact.
  • For the best texture, go light on the mashing. Mash just some of the beans while leaving others whole, for a black bean burger that has a pleasantly chunky, hearty texture.
  • Refrigerate the patty mixture. After mashing the ingredients together, transfer the patty mixture to the refrigerator for just a few minutes. This step allows the ingredients to really set and bind together.
  • When cooking, use moderate heat. Unlike a beef burger, where you want the pan to be hot and sizzling, this black bean burger recipe calls for lower and slower. Cook the patties on medium heat so that the outside gets nicely browned while the ingredients inside are fully cooked.
Final recipe showing the salsa black bean burger in a bun with condiments next to potato chips

What to Serve With This Black Bean Veggie Burger Recipe

How to Store & Reheat This Black Bean Burger

Store leftover patties in an airtight container in the fridge.

Reheat on the stovetop or in the microwave.

How Long Will Black Bean Burger Last in the Fridge?

Cooked patties will last about 5 days in the refrigerator.

Can I Freeze This Black Bean Veggie Burger Recipe?

Freeze patties before or after cooking for up to 3 months. Stack patties between wax paper or parchment paper sheets in a freezer-safe container and transfer to the freezer. You can also freeze them on a baking sheet, then once they are frozen, transfer them to a freezer bag and place them back in the freezer. This makes it easy to grab one or two at a time.

To re-heat cooked frozen patties, warm thoroughly on the stovetop or in the microwave.

To thaw and cook uncooked frozen patties, transfer them to the refrigerator to thaw overnight (or for about 8 hours). Once thawed, proceed with the cooking instructions in the recipe.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are black bean burgers healthy?

Black bean burgers and veggie burgers in general have less saturated fat than beef or other meat burgers, so if reducing saturated fat is important to you, they are a great option. These black bean burgers are also high in fiber and protein, as well as other nutrients and vitamins.

How to dress up a black bean burger?

A generous smear of guacamole or mashed avocado goes really well with the Southwestern flavors of this black bean burger recipe. Spiced-up mayo or chipotle sauce is a nice touch. Fresh, crisp lettuce and juicy sliced tomatoes are always welcome. Onions—either fresh or pickled—are delicious on black bean burgers. And if you like cheese, top your patties with a slice of cheddar or pepper jack cheese.

Can you make black bean burgers ahead of time?

Yes! Store formed, uncooked patties in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to three days. Pull the patties out of the refrigerator about 30 minutes before cooking to allow them to come to room temperature before cooking. This will help ensure your veggie burgers cook all of the way through. Patties can also be frozen for easy homemade black bean burgers whenever you crave them.

Skip the frozen vegetarian burgers, and try my salsa black bean burger recipe. This is a hearty, healthy recipe that’s packed with protein and loaded with flavor. I love the chunky texture, the Southwestern flavor, and the use of salsa for a shorter list of ingredients. The best part is that you can mix it all in one bowl without using a food processor or any fancy tools.

More vegetarian recipes

If you try this feel good Black Bean Burger recipe or any other recipe on Feel Good Foodie, then don’t forget to rate the recipe and leave a comment below! It helps others who are thinking of making the recipe. We would love to hear about your experience making it. And if you snapped some shots, share it on Instagram so we can repost on Stories!

This black bean burger recipe was originally published April 15, 2019. It has recently been updated with new photos and step by step collages to make it easier to follow.

order MY book

The Feel Good Foodie Cookbook is now available everywhere books are sold!

Black Bean Burgers

This Black Bean Burger recipe is made with salsa and pantry staples mixed in one bowl – a hearty, healthy protein-packed dinner with a Southwestern flare.
5 from 65 votes
Servings 6 servings
Course Entree
Calories 241
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Email This Recipe
Enter your email and I’ll send this directly to you. Plus you’ll get new recipes from me every week!

Video

Ingredients
  

  • 2 (15 ounce) cans black beans rinsed/dried
  • ½ cup prepared salsa
  • ½ cup breadcrumbs
  • ¼ cup minced red onions
  • 2 eggs beaten
  • 2 tablespoon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil divided

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Spread beans evenly on the baking sheet and bake for 12-15 minutes until slightly dried out, mixing halfway through. Transfer beans to a large bowl and mash partially with a potato masher, leaving some whole beans.
  • Place salsa in a fine-mesh sieve and stir a few times to drain excess liquid. Transfer the salsa to the bowl with the black beans. Add the breadcrumbs, onions, eggs, mustard, cumin, salt, and pepper. Place in fridge for 10 minutes to set.
  • Form the mixture into patties with about ⅓ cup mixture in each. This should make about 6-8 patties.
  • Cook on Stovetop: Heat half the oil in a large nonstick grill pan or skillet over medium heat. Add 4 patties and cook for 4-5 minutes per side until browned. Repeat with the remaining oil and patties.
  • Cook on Grill: Brush the grill surface with a little oil. Cook patties over medium-high heat for 4-5 minutes per side until browned.
  • Bake in Oven: Place patties on a lined baking sheet and bake at 375°F for 20 minutes, flipping halfway through.
  • Serve the burgers on buns with your favorite toppings.

Notes

*The nutrition label is for one black bean burger patty only and does not include the bun or additional toppings.
Storage: Store any leftovers in an airtight container. They will last about 5 days in the fridge.
Freezing instructions: Freeze patties before or after cooking for up to 3 months. Stack patties between wax paper or parchment paper sheets in a freezer-safe container and transfer to the freezer. You can also freeze them on a baking sheet, then once they are frozen, transfer them to a freezer bag and place them back in the freezer. This makes it easy to grab one or two at a time.
To re-heat cooked frozen patties, warm thoroughly on the stovetop or in the microwave.
To thaw and cook uncooked frozen patties, transfer them to the refrigerator to thaw overnight (or for about 8 hours). Once thawed, proceed with your desired cooking method.
Substitutes: For best results, follow the recipe as is. However here are some common substitutes that would work well in this recipe.
  • To make it vegan, substitute the 2 eggs for 1/3-½ cup mashed sweet potatoes or flax eggs. To make flax eggs, soak two tablespoons ground flaxseeds in five tablespoons of water in a small bowl. Allow the mix to soak for about five minutes, until the consistency of a thin gel, before adding to your patty mixture.
  • To make it gluten-free, use oats or almond flour
  • Instead of prepared salsa, you can use a ½ cup mix of tomatoes, onions, peppers, cilantro and spices.
  • Instead of breadcrumbs, you can use all-purpose flour, crushed tortilla chips, or panko breadcrumbs.

Nutrition

Serving: 1patty, Calories: 241kcal, Carbohydrates: 33g, Protein: 12g, Fat: 7g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 4g, Trans Fat: 0.01g, Cholesterol: 55mg, Sodium: 1023mg, Potassium: 559mg, Fiber: 11g, Sugar: 2g, Vitamin A: 198IU, Vitamin C: 5mg, Calcium: 89mg, Iron: 4mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate. It will vary based on cooking method and specific ingredients used.

Cuisine American
Course: Entree

Rate and comment

Recipe Rating




Comments

  1. Rob K says:

    This recipe was super delicious and healthy as is… topped with lettuce, tomatoes, and onions.

    I also served it topped with grilled onions and mushrooms and melted cheese and liked it equally.

See All Comments