Classic Bean Burgers Recipe - Skillful Cook
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Classic Bean Burgers

10 reviews / 5 average

Would you make bean burgers 10 (ten) times to get the recipe just right?

Me, either.

But they would! Meet Alex and Sonja of A Couple Cooks.

Collage of images of people and food.

Well, actually, the one in the blue plaid who looks like he might have something stuck in his throat is not Alex. That’s Bjork. And the one in the other blue is me. So, really this is just a cute picture of Sonja. And their delicious paella.

Annnnd, those 3 pictures? Yeah, they took those, too.

They do it all and I just try to be friends with them.

Here’s an inside look at how the perfect bean burger recipe was born!

Which bean burgers were most memorable between attempt #1 and attempt #10?

Sonja: The most memorable of our attempts for me was actually our first two tries from last season, which turned out like mashed potatoes on a bun! I had no idea that veggie burgers could be so hard to perfect.

Some of my favorites from the ten attempts this round were when we added too much pre-made grill seasonings (too salty to eat!), and too much egg (horribly hard to work with!).

Bean burger with pinto beans, almonds, and sunflower seeds.

Why no eggs?

Alex: For a while (like attempts 1-8) we thought that the egg was key to a final product that held together. Unfortunately, the eggs made the mixture pretty runny so you could not place them straight on the grill. Giving up on using egg as a binder was the key to final success!

What’s your favorite way to top them?

Alex: Bun, Burger, Ketchup, Tomato, Spicy Mustard, Lettuce, Bun.

Sonja: Since we’ve been so focused on perfecting the burger, I feel like I still have some work to do on toppings! Toppings are key with bean burgers, since they provide a bit more moisture to the dry texture. While I love the ketchup/mayo/onion/cheese combo, I’m hoping to try out some spiced Greek yogurt with cucumbers and red onions. Look for a potential recipe to come!

Bean burger with pinto beans, almonds, and sunflower seeds.
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Super Healthy Bean Burger |

Classic Bean Burgers


This classic bean burgers recipe is made with pinto beans, almonds, and sunflower seeds for a perfectly textured meatless burger.


  • 1/3 cup red onion (about 1/2 onion)
  • 5 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 cup almonds
  • 1/2 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon hot chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • Fresh ground pepper
  • 1/2 cup dried bread crumbs
  • 1 15-ounce can pinto beans


  1. Preheat a grill to medium heat.
  2. Peel the 5 garlic cloves. In the bowl of a food processor, add 1/2 red onion and garlic and process until finely chopped. (If no food processor, chop finely with a knife.)
  3. Add 1/2 cup almonds, 1/2 cup sunflower seeds, 1/2 cup fresh cilantro, 1 teaspoon hot chili powder, 1 teaspoon olive oil, and 1/2 teaspoon salt, and a good amount of fresh ground pepper. Pulse 10 to 15 times until the mixture is coarsely chopped. (If no food processor, coarsely chop the almonds, sunflower seeds, and cilantro, and combine with the other ingredients.)
  4. Drain and rinse the beans. In a medium bowl, mash the beans with a potato masher. Stir in the ingredients from the steps above, and add 1/2 cup bread crumbs. Mix together with your hands; taste and add more salt if desired.
  5. Form the mixture into four patties. Place on a grill and grill for 6 to 8 minutes per side, depending on the heat of the grill. Or, bake them in a 450°F oven for 30 minutes, flipping after 15 minutes.
  6. Top with toppings of your choice, and enjoy!
  • Prep Time: 30 mins
  • Cook Time: 15 mins
  • Category: Dinner
  • Cuisine: American


  • Calories: 300

Keywords: black bean burgers, healthy black bean burgers, vegetarian black bean burgers

Bean burgers with pinto beans, almonds, and sunflower seeds.

Soo...I’ll just throw this out there….

Not only are the bean burgers are amazing, but the bean mixture itself is good enough to eat plain. Or spread on a wrap. Or with salty chips. Don’t judge.

I know we all have different feelings on this, but how do you feel about veggie burgers?

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  1. Skillful Cook Logo

    Just tried these and they were great! I appreciate that they don’t require eggs–best vegan veggie/bean burger I’ve made! I didn’t add any salt and they were plenty salty for me. Topped with spinach and vegan mayo for a little added moisture, totally fantastic! Mine made 6 good-sized patties. Thanks for the recipe!

    1. Skillful Cook Logo

      Absolutely! I didn’t do the work of creating the recipe…. but I was happy to share it! So tasty! 🙂

  2. Skillful Cook Logo

    I JUST made these tonight, although i changed mine just a tiny bit.

    I added 8 minced up button mushrooms to the mixture, as well as only using black beans instead of pinto.

    i served them on brioche rolls with a avocado salsa spread on the bottom with sautéed mushooms on top.

    couple all that with grilled shish kabob vegis and i had one heck of a dinner.


  3. Skillful Cook Logo

    Wow!! These are great veggie burgers, and not too starchy. I am gluten-free, so I used almond meal instead of the bread crumbs. I also added a chopped chipotle & roasted red peppers to the mix. Served w/ sliced avocado, roasted red pepper yogurt & slaw. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Skillful Cook Logo

    Made these for my mother in law for her birthday. When she heard what we were having she was a bit worried (she is a big meat eater). But she loved it! Then we ate an amazing caramel cake. (YUM!) I loved the recipe so much I want to make it again and I want to triple it and freeze them so they will always be on hand. Do you think that will work out okay?

  5. Skillful Cook Logo

    I tried it and it worked out fine. Even though you didn’t answer me, I wanted others to know it works well tripled and frozen if the’re curious.

    1. Skillful Cook Logo

      Thank you Sarah! sorry I didn’t see your comment in time to respond – I appreciate you following up for the sake of others!

      1. Skillful Cook Logo

        I froze them before I cooked them. I made them into patties and froze them in between wax paper so they would be easier to take out one or two when I needed it.

  6. Skillful Cook Logo

    Hi there, You have done an incredible job. I’ll certainly digg it and personally
    recommend to my friends. I’m confident they will be benefited from this site.

  7. Skillful Cook Logo

    I used these proportions, but subbed walnuts for the sunflower seeds and almonds, parsley for half the cilantro, and used about 0.75 cup cooked rice instead of bread crumbs (mashed into the beans with a fork). The baked burgers held together well compared to many bean burgers, and we all enjoyed them on hamburger rolls — even my two year old and four year old finished most of a (small) burger each. A solid recipe; I will make it again.

  8. Skillful Cook Logo

    Made these tonight!! Sooo good!! No sunflower seeds in the house~sub pumpkins seeds!
    Thanks for sharing ❤️

  9. Skillful Cook Logo

    By far my favorite bean burger recipe.
    Although, I suppose I shouldn’t say that this recipe is my favorite, considering how many changes I’ve made to it! For simplicity’s sake, I’ve adapted it for my busy
    almost-college-student purposes to use 3/4 teaspoon of granulated garlic in place of the garlic cloves and 8 teaspoons of dried parsley for the cilantro. I usually substitute the bread crumbs with rolled oats, but have found that the patties hold together well without either. Because I usually don’t have sunflower seeds in the house, I just nix the ingredient, and the patties are none the worse with just the almonds.

    Thanks for the inspiration!

    1. Skillful Cook Logo

      Hi, Linda! So sorry to hear these didn’t turn out for you. 😕 It’s hard to say why the burgers aren’t sticking together without seeing them. Thanks for sharing this feedback with us though – we really appreciate it!

  10. Skillful Cook Logo

    Got any idea whether you can substitute flax meal for ground sunflower seed?

  11. Skillful Cook Logo

    Delicious and then some!!! Made five, ate one and froze four for later, Yummy! I topped mine with avocado and salsa.

  12. Skillful Cook Logo

    I just made this recipe and it is AMAZING!!! I will definitely be making this on a regular basis.

  13. Skillful Cook Logo

    Developed these tonight! So wonderful! When sunflower seeds are unavailable, substitute pumpkin seeds. Thank you for revealing

  14. Skillful Cook Logo

    This is a really good article. I think this is one of the best entries I’ve ever read. Your work is outstanding and motivating. I appreciate you.

    1. Skillful Cook Logo

      Your article is very amazing. It is very helpful for newcomers. It really makes me happy. Thanks for this great article. I am a gamer and I would like to suggest to you a game xxx which is really interesting.

  15. Skillful Cook Logo

    These burgers help my body become much healthier. I have reduced the sweetness to suit my taste. thsnks or sharing this amazing tips

  16. Skillful Cook Logo

    Absolutely fantastic, right here! First, I planned to make three batches, but then I decided to make six times as much. Made using a combination of chicken and the results were fantastic.