If I had ten thumbs, I would give this recipe ten thumbs up. It’s UBER DELICIOUS. AMAZING. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE. The BEST vegan veggie burger I’ve tried to date.
The infamous Marie Catrib’s restaurant is less than a one hour drive from my house. They have a serious reputation when it comes to delicious food, and as you would expect, a massive following of fans. From what I understand, the place is ALWAYS busy. To date, I haven’t actually been inside the restaurant. On my birthday, I wanted to eat there so badly. For me, it’s a huge treat to go out to eat at a place that serves great vegan food (places like this are still hard to find here in west Michigan). Hubs, another couple and I all piled in the car and made the trek on a beautiful Saturday evening in June. We arrived only to discover that Marie Catrib’s closes at 4:00 p.m. on Saturdays. What?! Seriously?! C’mon!!! I guess I should have checked their hours online. But really – what kind of restaurant isn’t open on Saturday night?! I was sooooo disappointed :( I guess they are a breakfast/lunch place, not lunch/dinner. Boo.
Fortunately, Hubs’ office isn’t too far from Marie Catrib’s, so he picked up take-out for me a few weeks ago. I ordered “the darling of the restaurant”….
Sweet Potato & Quinoa Burger
Our darling of the restaurant! This is made with sweet potatoes, quinoa, cilantro, almonds and spices. Served with fresh greens, ginger-tomato chutney and curried vegannaise on your choice of bread. 8.69
I dare say it was the best vegan food I’ve had yet. Soooooo good. Hubs also surprised me with a MC dessert. I don’t know what it was called, but it was the most amazing (not kidding) vegan chocolate cake. You would have no idea it was vegan. I’m not even a big cake fan, but I could eat this stuff everyday. Needless to say, I was a very, very happy camper.
I searched online for a recipe that might come close to the Sweet Potato & Quinoa Burger. I found a fellow Marie Catrib’s fan who wrote a blog post about her knock-off recipe for this very burger. Oh thank you Jesus. Please let it be amazing.
I tried it – and it’s amazing! It’s a dead ringer for the real thing. Way to go, Jill. You ROCK. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!
This is NOT a quick recipe (unless you prepare your lentils and quinoa ahead of time). But, the payoff is well worth it. I promise.
YIELD: 10 PATTIES
2 cups cooked brown lentils (about ¾ cup uncooked)
2 cups cooked quinoa (about ½ cup uncooked)
1½ cups mashed sweet potato*
You may salt the cooking water for the lentils and quinoa (it will help to layer the seasoning throughout the burger). The sweet potatoes can be microwaved – peel them, cut into large chunks and put them in a microwave-safe bowl with little bit of water. Mine took about 13 minutes in the microwave (I checked them at 10 minute intervals).
2 cups onion, diced (I only used 1 cup)
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup carrot, grated
1 cup kale, very finely chopped (if it isn’t very fine, your burger will break apart)
1½ cups oats (either old-fashioned or quick)
½ tsp. ground cumin
½ tsp. ground coriander
1 Tbsp. curry powder
1 Tbsp. ketchup
1 Tbsp. chili sauce, such as Sriracha
½ cup fresh cilantro, finely chopped
salt and pepper to taste
In a skillet over medium-high heat, sauté the onion and garlic until the onions are translucent. Season them with salt about half way through the cooking process.
Combine ALL of the ingredients in a large bowl. Get in there with your hands and really mash it up so it is combined well. This mixture does especially well after a 1-2 hour rest in the fridge, if time allows.
Form patties. Unlike meat, these patties don’t shrink up much when cooked, so you can make them true to size. (Jill’s recipe says it yields ten patties, but I must have made mine on the small size – I wound up with eleven.)
(Jill’s directions differ slightly here.)
This is how I cooked them:
Use about ½ Tbsp. of oil (grapeseed, canola or vegetable) per patty. Heat oil over high in a large skillet (do not let the oil smoke). CAREFULLY place the patties in the pan (oil will spatter a bit, so wear an apron). Cook them 3-4 minutes on each side.
Dress your bun, add your burger and dig in!
I used a Sprouted Seven-Grain Hamburger Bun from The Sprouted Bakehouse (these are really good) dressed with vegannaise, sliced tomato and sprouts. Perfection. I served it with Multigrain Tortilla Chips from Food Should Taste Good and salsa. I LOVE these all-natural, preservative-free, gluten-free chips – they are so healthy and yet sooooooo good (I buy mine at Costco).
I froze most of my patties after forming them (skip the frying step). To reheat, I put one or two in the toaster oven on 350° for a few minutes (to defrost), then I fry them according to the recipe directions above.
Again, thank you Jill at www.readyprepgo.com for this awesome recipe!!! Nicely done!