A few years ago, I went through a vegetarian phase, and whenever Alex would get regular burgers, I’d order veggie. But even at great restaurants, they were mushy and bland. So I was psyched when Jeanine from Love & Lemons announced that, once and for all, she’d figured out how to make a killer veggie burger. Here’s how…

The Best Veggie Burger You’ll Ever Have
by Jeanine from Love & Lemons

Before now, the best veggie burger I ever ate was just a pretty good one. So, for this post, I set out to create one that I truly love. After trying multiple variations, this mushroom and walnut combination was by far the winner. Chopped up mushrooms create a sort of meaty quality, but the real secret is the walnut-miso paste. It creates a really rich flavor, and also helps bind the burger together. Lastly, for a spicy kick, I stirred some sriracha into my ketchup!

Recipe: Walnut-Miso Mushroom Burgers
Makes 6 mini sliders

You’ll need:

For the walnut-miso paste:
1/4 cup walnuts, toasted
1 tsp. miso paste

For the burgers:
Olive oil
2 shallots, chopped (about 1/3 cup)
6 oz. mushrooms (mix of cremini & shittakes), chopped into small (about 1/4 inch) pieces
Splash of soy sauce
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1/2 tsp. Chinese five spice powder
Splash of mirin (or rice vinegar)
1/4 tsp. of honey
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/2 cup panko (1/4 cup into the mix, 1/4 to roll the patties in)
A few teaspoons sesame seeds
6 mini slider buns (soft ones)

Topping options:
Chopped scallions
Sliced avocado
Sriracha ketchup (mix sriracha and ketchup to your desired spice level)
Wasabi mustard (again, mix in wasabi to taste)

Crush the walnuts and miso together to form a chunky paste, (using a mortar & pestle if you have one).

In a medium pan, heat a bit of olive oil. Add the shallots and let them cook down for about a minute. Add the mushrooms, a splash of soy sauce, garlic powder, onion powder and five spice powder. Stir together and let cook until the mushrooms are cooked down, about 5-8 minutes. Add a splash of mirin to deglaze the pan. Then add in the walnut-miso paste, and a small drizzle of honey, combining everything together. Remove from heat and transfer to a medium bowl. Set it aside to cool for a couple of minutes before adding the egg.

Add the egg and 1/4 cup panko, and let the mixture sit in the fridge for 15 minutes or so. While you wait, spread the remaining panko and the sesame seeds (together) on a plate.

Remove mix from fridge and form into small (approximately 3-inch) patties. Roll each into the panko. Use your hands to firmly press them into shape. This will be a messy process, it’s ok if they fall apart a little. If they’re falling apart too much, let the patties sit in the fridge for another 10 minutes before you cook them. This will help the egg continue to bind them together.

Wipe out the pan you were using before, and heat a few tablespoons of olive oil. Cook patties for 2-3 minutes per side.

Place each patty on a slider bun and garnish as desired (see above for topping suggestions).

Looks delicious! Thank you so much, Jeanine.

P.S. More best recipes, including homemade hummus and avocado toast.

(Recipe and photos by Jeanine of Love & Lemons. Thanks to Shoko for helping with this series.)