Veggie burger on a bun.

Julia Mueller

Veggie burgers make a satisfying meal and are easy to make at home. While some store-bought veggie burgers have the reputation of being bland, or even unhealthy, you can spice up homemade veggie patties in plenty of ways. Combining rice and beans in a burger patty provides a complete protein and makes for a well-rounded, nutritious meal. Chipotle chilies give these black bean veggie burger patties a kick. Finish with your favorite toppings.

Things You'll Need

Cook the brown rice according to package instructions. You’ll need one cup cooked, which is the equivalent of 1/3 cup uncooked rice. It’s easiest to cook 1 cup of dry rice (yielding 3 cups cooked) and save the leftover cooked rice for other uses.

In order to make black bean burgers spicy, you can use fresh diced jalapeno, leaving the seeds in, dried cayenne pepper or canned chipotle chilies in adobo sauce. Chipotle chilies are very spicy, so you’ll only need one pepper for the recipe and can use the remaining chilies for future uses.

Black bean burger patty ingredients.

Julia Mueller

Step 1: Prepare the Base

Pour the cooked brown rice and drained and rinsed black beans into a mixing bowl. Use a fork to mash the beans, leaving them somewhat chunky.

Beans and rice in a bowl

Julia Mueller

Step 2: Chop the Vegetables

Finely chop the red onion, garlic and chipotle chili. Make sure the pieces are very fine so they can become well incorporated with the burger patties.

Chopped onion, garlic and chili.

Julia Mueller

Step 3: Mix

Add the onion, garlic, chili, ground cumin and salt to the mixing bowl with the rice and beans.

Burger patty ingredients in a bowl.

Julia Mueller

Stir everything together until well-incorporated. The rice and bean mixture will be thick, slightly sticky and very malleable.

Bowl of mixed veggie burger patty ingredients.

Julia Mueller

Step 4: Form Patties

Form the mixture into a large ball, and then divide it into four equal sections. Make a small ball out of one of the sections and press between your palms to flatten into a burger patty.

Veggie burger patty.

Julia Mueller

Make patties out of the remaining three sections of the mixture, and place all of the patties on a plate.

Burger patties on a plate.

Julia Mueller

Step 5: Cook

Heat a large (10-inch) skillet to medium-high, and add enough cooking oil to generously coat the surface, about 3 tablespoons.

Carefully place all of the burger patties on the hot skillet. Cook until crispy, about 2 to 3 minutes. Carefully flip the patties and cook an additional 2 to 3 minutes until golden-brown on both sides.

Veggie burgers in a skillet.

Julia Mueller

Step 6: Serve

Toast burger buns, and make complete veggie burgers with your favorite toppings, such as fresh greens, avocado, tomato and onion.

Veggie burger on a bun with arugula, red onion and avocado.

Julia Mueller