Lentil Goat Cheese Burgers

January 13, 2011 · 11 comments

in beans and legumes,burgers and sandwiches,goat cheese,healthy,vegetarian

I’m always looking for  new vegetarian dishes to make during the week, and as soon as I saw these burgers Cara made, which include both lentils (yum) and goat cheese (love), we were in business.

Lentils are a great option for going meatless, because they are hearty and have a nice dose of protein, too.  I did make some changes to the original recipe (of course).  I had about 2-3 oz. of mushrooms in the fridge, and a leek that was supposed to be devoted to a dish that never got made.  Both of those got thrown into the burgers, and were welcome additions.  I didn’t  have Italian seasoning and I don’t use egg substitutes, so I adjusted those ingredients accordingly.  The mushrooms contributed a little extra moisture, so I upped the amount of panko so the burgers wouldn’t fall apart (although, I will admit that one of them was still a casualty; sorry, husband.)

Though I’m not much of a condiment kinda gal, I do like them with burgers and next time I think I’d add a roasted red pepper relish or perhaps a sundried tomato ketchup to these burgers.

My only complaint about these was purely user error on my part, and that was undersalting them.  Typically, I am more heavy-handed with salt than anything but this time around I was a bit shy and it was evident.  If I were a Top Chef contestant, I would have had to pack my knives and GO!

These burgers cook up in  no time, but do benefit from being refrigerated for a while so the flavors can meld and they are easier to shape.  I made the mixture the night before we had these so dinner took me about 10 minutes the day of. Can’t beat that!

Lentil Goat Cheese Burgers

Serves 4
Adapted from Cara’s Cravings

3/4 cup dried lentils, rinsed and picked over
1 bay leaf
2 tsp. olive oil, divided
1 leek, sliced
1/3 cup diced onion
1/2 cup sliced mushrooms
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 large carrot, grated
1 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
2 oz. goat cheese
6 Tbsp. panko breadcrumbs
1/4 tsp. oregano
1/4 tsp. basil
1/8 tsp. thyme
1 egg

Place lentils in a saucepan with water and bay leaf.  Bring to a boil and then simmer until lentils are tender, about 30 minutes.  Drain the lentils and remove the bay leaf.

Meanwhile, heat 1 tsp. olive oil in a skillet over medium heat.  Sauté the onions, mushrooms, garlic, and carrot for about 5 or 6 minutes or until softened.  Add balsamic vinegar, increase the heat, and let the vinegar reduce.

Combine the lentils, sauteed vegetables and remaining ingredients in a food processor. Season to taste with salt and pepper.  Pulse several times to combine.

Place the mixture in a bowl, cover, and refrigerate 45 minutes or overnight.  Divide the mixture into 4 patties.

Heat the remaining 1 tsp. olive oil in a nonstick pan over medium.   Place the patties in the skillet and cook for about 10-12 minutes, flipping halfway through.

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{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

Joanne January 14, 2011 at 5:21 am

I’ve been trying to eat more and more vegetarian meals lately as I try to lose a few pounds and this sounds like the perfect thing! I still get to feel like I”m eating a “burger” but it’s crazy healthy to boot!

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Cara January 14, 2011 at 8:10 am

Glad you liked them! I need to make these again soon.

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Shanon January 14, 2011 at 9:18 am

I tried this recipe from Cara’s website this past spring. They were delicious! I think they were my first vegetarian burger, so I now my vegetarian burger bar is set very high!

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bellini January 14, 2011 at 10:02 am

I also like the fact that you put them on the thin buns, fewer carbs for this veggie dish.

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Banana Wonder January 14, 2011 at 10:11 am

Love lentils and love veggie burgers and love goat cheese. My brother lives in Moscow, ID which is the lentil capital of the world (they even sell lentils to India, hold a tour de lentils bike ride and host a lentil festival) and I still have tons of lentils from the last visit. I will have to try this recipe out. Thanks!

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kimu January 14, 2011 at 2:40 pm

Definitely going to try these, they sound really delicious!

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innasinventions January 15, 2011 at 12:00 pm

Wow, I can’t wait to try these! Given that I don’t eat beef, whenever my husband makes burgers for himself, I always end up having a Boca Burger…this seems like a much tastier alternative!

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Ivy January 15, 2011 at 12:27 pm

What a great idea to make burgers with lentils and goat cheese. Must try them.

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Joan Nova January 16, 2011 at 7:28 am

Oh, no, please do not pack your knives and go! Sounds wonderful and I definitely like the addition of leek which is a vegetable I’m using more frequently these days. Good job!

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Jen @ BeantownBaker.com January 16, 2011 at 10:23 am

I’ve made these burgers before and I agree they are tasty. I like you addition of mushrooms.

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Jenn AKA The Leftover Queen January 17, 2011 at 11:29 am

These look great – love both lentils and goat cheese! So these have to be awesome!

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