The Best Black Bean Burgers I’ve Ever Had

Between homemade, restaurant, and store-bought, these are the best black bean burgers I’ve ever tried. With great reviews from taste testers around the world, I’m confident you’ll be satisfied with this bean burger recipe. They’re big, thick, hearty, and flavorful. The trick is to partially dry out the black beans so the burgers do not taste mushy. Grill or bake the black bean burgers and enjoy on a bun, plain, or on a salad.

black bean burger with a bun, onions, cheese, lettuce, and avocado

A few weeks ago I made a batch of what I believe to be the best black bean burgers ever. Or at least the best black bean burgers I’ve ever had. These were a massive hit with the family. We couldn’t believe the hearty texture, incredible flavor, and overall ease of preparation. I was expecting good, but not this good.

These Black Bean Burgers Are:

  • easy
  • healthy
  • hearty
  • satisfying
  • big + thick
  • compact
  • garlicky
  • juicy
  • spicy
  • NOT MUSHY

I feel the need to shout that these black bean burgers are not mushy, one of the common problems with homemade black bean burgers. On the other hand, these black bean burgers are not crumbly either. They hold their shape beautifully!

black bean burger on a bun with lettuce without the top bun

Quick Video Tutorial

How to Make My Best Black Bean Burgers

The full printable recipe is below, but let’s walk through it quickly so you understand each step before you get started

  • Partially dry out the black beans. I learned this from Serious Eats. Spread out the canned black beans onto a lined baking sheet and bake for about 15 minutes. This prevents the black bean burgers from tasting like mush.
  • While the black beans are in the oven, sauté some garlic, onion, and pepper together. This will be the flavor base of the entire burger. Make sure you blot the garlic, onion, + pepper when they’re done– you don’t want its moisture in the black bean burger.
  • Food processor or fork! Your choice. Whichever you choose, make sure you don’t completely mash the black beans. We want a bulky and satisfying texture. Larger chunks of beans are the best part!
  • FLAVOR. A black bean burger would simply be a patty made from beans if we didn’t add some pizazz. The sautéed garlic, onion, + pepper combo is a great start, but a little cumin, worcestershire sauce, smoked paprika, feta cheese, and chili pepper turn black beans into the BEST black bean burger.

drying black beans on a baking sheet

Sautéed onions, garlic, and peppers in a skillet

Ingredients for black bean veggie burgers in a glass bowl

Now let’s talk about binders.

And not the kind you bring to school. How do the black bean burgers hold their shape?

  • Breadcrumbs. I used gluten free bread crumbs to keep the burgers GF, but any bread crumbs are great. You can use crushed crackers, almond flour, or even oat flour instead.
  • Ketchup. I love ketchup so the more the merrier, but you only need 2 Tablespoons. Some sort of condiment like this is needed so the burgers hold their shape. Instead of ketchup, try mayo or BBQ sauce. (I used a tangy BBQ sauce in the 2nd batch and the burgers were incredible.)
  • 2 eggs. Best burger binder you’ll find.

All of this stuff, plus the baked black beans, goes into 1 big bowl. Lightly mash it all with a fork to combine. It’s too easy.

hand holding a measuring cup filled with black bean burger mixture

How to Shape & Cook Black Bean Burgers

Shape the black bean burgers however large or small you want, keeping in mind that the larger they are, the more unevenly they’ll cook. From what I tested, the sweet spot is about 1/3 cup of mixture.

You can bake or grill the burgers– instructions for both included in the printable recipe below. You can also make the burgers ahead of time and freeze, which is what I did for our trip. Stack them between parchment paper in a freezer container or zipped-top bag. You can even bake/grill the frozen burgers if you forget to thaw them.

black bean burgers after cooking

hands holding a black bean burger with a bite taken from it

For a light lunch, skip the bun and eat on a salad. For a seriously impressive supper, get creative with the toppings: mashed avocado + caramelized onion, pepper jack cheese + spicy mustard + sweet pickles, herbed goat cheese + roasted red peppers, sriracha + sautéed mushrooms, mozzarella + pesto, corn salsa + cheddar cheese, or even chunky mango guacamole.

When I made them this past weekend, I piled the black bean burgers high with BBQ sauce, Swiss cheese, and grilled pineapple. Best thing I’ve eaten all week. And my week included s’mores made with peanut butter cups. SO THAT’S A GOOD BURGER.

Print
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black bean burger with a bun, onions, cheese, lettuce, and avocado

The Best Black Bean Burgers I’ve Ever Had

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 6-7 burgers
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Between homemade, restaurant, and store-bought, these are the best black bean burgers I’ve ever tried. These burgers are not vegan or vegetarian. (See recipe note to make adjustments if necessary.) With great reviews from taste testers around the world, I’m confident you’ll be satisfied with this black bean burger recipe!


Ingredients

  • 2 (14 ounce) cans black beans, drained, rinsed, and patted dry
  • 1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 3/4 cup finely chopped bell pepper (1/2 of a pepper)
  • 1 cup finely chopped yellow onion (1/2 of a large onion)
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced (about 1 Tablespoon)
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs or oat flour
  • 1/2 cup feta cheese (skip if vegan)
  • 2 large eggs (see note for vegan substitution)
  • 1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce (see note for vegan & vegetarian version)
  • 2 Tablespoons ketchup, mayo, or BBQ sauce
  • pinch salt + pepper

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 325°F (163°C). Spread beans evenly onto a lined baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes until slightly dried out.
  2. Meanwhile, sauté olive oil, chopped pepper, onion, and garlic over medium heat until peppers and onions are soft, about 5-6 minutes. Gently blot some of the moisture out. Place in a large bowl or in a food processor with the remaining ingredients (cumin, chili powder, garlic powder, smoked paprika, bread crumbs, cheese, eggs, worcestershire, ketchup, salt, and pepper). Stir or pulse everything together, then add the black beans. Mash with a fork or pulse the mixture, leaving some larger chunks of beans.
  3. Form into patties– about 1/3 cup of mixture in each.
  4. To bake: Place patties on a parchment paper lined baking sheet and bake at 375°F (191°C) for 10 minutes on each side, 20 minutes total. To grill: Place patties on greased aluminum foil and grill 8 minutes on each side. Heat temperature is personal preference as all grills differ. Generally, black bean burgers should grill on medium-high heat about 350°F (177°C) – 400°F (204°C).
  5. Serve with your favorite toppings. Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Notes

  1. Freezing Instructions: Cooked or uncooked black bean burgers freeze wonderfully for up to 3 months. Stack between parchment paper in a freezer container or zipped-top bag. Thaw in the refrigerator and reheat to your liking or, if uncooked, cook according to instructions. If desired, you can skip thawing and reheat/cook from frozen for an extra couple minutes.
  2. Vegan & Vegetarian: Worcestershire sauce is not vegan or vegetarian. For vegetarian burgers, leave it out or replace with your favorite vegetarian condiment such as BBQ sauce. For vegan burgers, make the following 3 changes– (1) leave out the Worcestershire sauce or replace with your favorite vegan condiment such as BBQ sauce, (2) leave out the cheese, and (3) replace the eggs with 1/3 cup mashed sweet potato.

Keywords: black beans, black bean burgers

948 Comments

  1. Two suggestions:
    Instead of normal bread crumbs use day old dark rye for a meatier flavor

    Substitute marmite for Worcestershire sauce to make recipe vegan and very tasty.

    1. Best veggie burgers ever! Have tried soo many recipes… this is great and very easy to make !

      1. So good. My hubby like it very much

    2. SwashB To make it vegan, did you also replace the eggs? If so, what did you substitute?

  2. I have to share this complement with you…
    I’ve made these I think 3 times. We’re not vegetarian. My husband, who grew up eating a limited palette of American/Italian foods, said “I think I like these better than beef burgers, because of the consistent texture.” Wow!! I did not expect that!

  3. My absolute favorite veggie burger! Thank you for this fantastic recipe!

  4. Hi sally was wondering what are the carbs calories etc in these burgers

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Bonnie! We don’t usually include nutrition information as it can vary between different brands of the same ingredients. Plus, many recipes have ingredient substitutions or optional ingredients listed. However, there are many handy online calculators where you can plug in and customize your exact ingredients/brands. Readers have found this one especially helpful: https://recipes.sparkpeople.com/recipe-calculator.asp

  5. Great veggie burgers!!! I didn’t have any feta on hand so subbed in some cheddar and added a little Valentina hot sauce to the wet ingredients- excellent! The texture was great with little crispy sides and flavor was excellent. Looking forward to seeing how they freeze up and recook. Thanks for the great recipe! Will be my go to for veggie burgers.

  6. Dilshad Pastakia says:

    Omg! My first attempt at a veggie burger, it was delicious.
    Thank you.

  7. Made these this evening with orange bell pepper and A1 for my liquid. The title doesn’t lie… these are the best black bean burgers ever. I baked them instead of grilling, topped with yellow mustard and spicy salad greens. You could definitely use these as a southwest bowl protein or breakfast addition.

  8. This was the best black bean burger I’ve ever had/made, and I’ve had my share! Delicious. I made as directed.

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      So glad you loved them, Robin! Thanks so much for giving these a try.

  9. These were delicious! We made exactly as the recipe states, and our whole family enjoyed them.

  10. Lorraine Koch says:

    These where really satisfying I plan on cooking them again. Added to one of my favorite recipes. I forgot the salt and pepper but yet it was really tasty.

  11. These black bean burgers are simply divine! I have made these several times and this was the first meal I made for my husband and I in our new home together!! I highly recommend them!! 🙂

  12. I made these on Tuesday and words can not describe how delicious these are. I say are because I doubled the recipe and froze them so I can cook them when I want some. I did however do a few things wrong like forgetting to blot the vegetables dry and also over processing some of the mixture, but I won’t forget to do that next time. They held together beautifully though and they are sooooooo delicious I made some guacamole with mine and topped it with pepper jack cheese, lettuce, tomato, and onion. I will be making these again once I run out thank you for sharing this delicious recipe. Next time I’ll make them right

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      We’re thrilled you enjoyed these black bean burgers, Demi! Thank you for giving them a try.

  13. Hey everyone! That recipe sounds and looks so good. I am going to cook ithose burgers tonight. Has anyone tried making them in a pan on the stove? Would that work? Somewhere else I read it can be helpful to put the patties in the freezer for about 30 minutes before frying them in a pan. Would you recommend that?
    Thank you for this recipe!

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Laura, we find the centers don’t cook very well when cooked on the stove. You might start them in a skillet then transfer to the oven to finish baking. Let us know how they turn out for you!

  14. This is the best bean burger I have ever tried. The ones that I made in the past were so mushy and not very enjoyable. This recipe is big on flavor and not mushy at all. I love the texture. I have been wanting to get away from eating beef burgers and now that I have found your recipe, I can. Thank you so much

  15. Jennifer McGuire says:

    Delish! I forgot to dry out the pepper/onion mix, so they were a trifle damp, but tasted excellent with a little smoked Gouda melted on top. Used panko breadcrumbs and BBQ sauce. Will definitely make these again.

  16. Has anyone cooked these in an air fryer?

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Eli, we haven’t tried these burgers in an air fryer, but let us know if you do!

  17. Hi!
    Do you think that substituting the bread crumbs with cooked quinoa would work?
    Thanks so much, love all your recipes!

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Trish! Cooked quinoa sounds like an excellent addition to these burgers. We don’t recommend leaving out the breadcrumbs completely, but how about replacing some of the sauteed vegetables with quinoa? Let us know what you try!

  18. The flavor profile is there but I did something wrong as they are mushy trying to form the pattys , delicious tho

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Kim, the mixture can definitely get a bit messy when trying to form the patties! Did you make any ingredient substitutions? We find that drying out the beans and soaking up some of the moisture from the sauteed vegetables helps reduce the mushiness. We’re glad you still enjoyed these!

  19. Sylvia Dell says:

    Excellent – will be making again. Instead of tinned beans, I cooked a batch of mixed dried beans in my slo cooker, then dried them out in oven for 15 mins, as you suggested. Texture was excellent, and also the flavour.

    A small reminder to self – cooking black beans with white beans meant the colours ran (think like laundry washing jeans with white shirt!) – tasted fine but next time I’ll just do black beans only! Or maybe just white cannelini only – but not both

  20. Lori Haskell says:

    These came out really well even though I didn’t follow the instructions on drying out the black beans first. I somehow missed that instructions. But, they were awesome just the same. Thank you!

  21. Was very surprised that this was soooo good! Burgers formed easily. I didn’t use canned beans instead I made homemade black beans from Sally’s recipe and just didn’t put the onions,oil, etc. we’re very tasty and full of flavor.Will Recommend to my other family members

  22. Linda Dixon- Ponzetto says:

    How many calories in the black bean burger?

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Linda, We don’t usually include nutrition information as it can vary between different brands of the same ingredients. Plus, many recipes have ingredient substitutions or optional ingredients listed. However, there are many handy online calculators where you can plug in and customize your exact ingredients/brands. Readers have found this one especially helpful: https://recipes.sparkpeople.com/recipe-calculator.asp

  23. Made these tonight and it turned out really good. I added some mushrooms in the onion and pepper mix. I only added one white button mushroom, next time I will add more and maybe not chop it that fine. I added sauteed mushrooms on top after I cooked it.

  24. Stephanie Andrews says:

    These burgers are delicious and not mushy or too dry. The flavor and texture is very good. I thought I could speed up the mixing part with my blender but I seriously regret it cause it was too thick for the blender to mix it and hard to get out of the blender after. Next time I’ll just mix it with a fork.

  25. Hi! Planning on making these tomorrow for dinner. Can I make the mixture in the morning or at lunch and leave in the fridge, then shape and cook the burgers in the evening? Thanks!

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Emma! We haven’t tested that particular make-ahead method, but don’t see why not! It may be helpful to form the patties before refrigerating as the mixture will get more firm as it sits. Let us know what you try!

  26. Made these for the first time tonight! Delicious! I’ll probably use a little less cumin next time, but overall it was so good. I also added a bit of quinoa. Topped it off with some cucumbers, mayo, spinach, and cheese! Just wish I had pepper jack instead of cheddar! I was a little worried because it seemed mushy when I was forming the burgers, but it wasn’t an issue after they were done cooking. This was my first attempt at a black bean burger and it won’t be the last!

  27. The best black bean burgers I ever made or had! I omitted the fresh garlic(didn’t have any) and subbed more ketchup for the worsteshire sauce. So so good!!

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