The Trick To Avoid A Mushy Veggie Burger Is So Simple

Veggie burger with tomato and onion
Veggie burger with tomato and onion - RHJPhtotos/Shutterstock

Homemade veggie burgers are one of those foods that can either turn out delicious or prove to be an epic culinary fail. While you don't necessarily have to worry about the resulting consistency of a portobello mushroom burger, crafting a perfectly uniform veggie burger from scratch takes adequate precision and preparation. One of the most recurrent characteristics of lackluster veggie burgers is inconsistency in texture. To avoid overly soft or mushy patties, be mindful when preparing your plant-based mixture.

Most worthwhile veggie burger recipes call for a suggested combination of your favorite vegetables, cooked legumes, a binder like flax meal or eggs, and a small amount of cooked grains. Throwing all the ingredients in a food processor only makes for a goopy mixture that resembles anything but texture-rich veggie patties. Conversely, you can't make veggie burgers that hold together well with unevenly chopped vegetables and whole bulky legumes.

To achieve the best consistency, combine your recipe's base ingredients first. Make sure legumes are coarsely mashed and vegetables have been evenly diced, cooked, and cooled. From here, add a balanced combination of wet and dry ingredients to achieve the right texture. Use your hands to judge the feel of your burger mix. The right combination of ingredients is easily formed into patties without seeming overly sticky. While you may use more than a few extra ingredients to achieve the right texture, supreme veggie burgers can't be made without sufficiently prepared vegetables.

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How You Prepare The Base Ingredients Of Your Veggie Burger Mix Makes All The Difference

Diced carrots, onions, and celery
Diced carrots, onions, and celery - Mediterranean/Getty Images

To achieve the perfect veggie burger consistency, add raw produce to your food processor and pulse until all pieces are uniform and small in size. You can also do this effectively with a sharp knife. Then, gently mash cooked legumes with a fork or potato masher. Whether or not you're using eggs as a binding ingredient, mindful preparation takes standard veggie burgers to delicious heights. Interestingly enough, the types of veggies you're using could also be to blame for your mushy vegan burgers. Removing water from high-moisture veggies (such as mushrooms, celery and bell peppers) wards off the risk of creating a less-than-ideal texture. If your recipe calls for raw shredded zucchini or onion, take the time to squeeze out excess liquid with a paper towel before combining with other ingredients.

Next to cutting down vegetables to the same small size, precook your selected veggies to remove additional moisture. Saute aromatics like onions and garlic to give your mixture a more satisfying consistency and taste. While you can cook all veggies in a pan over your stove, roasting effectively dries out your vegetable mixture, giving your burger base a more solidified texture. If you want even more textural variance, roast your legumes as well. Doing so to your pre-cooked beans and lentils prevents burgers from becoming too wet.

More Useful Ways To Add Texture To Your Veggie Burgers

Cooked veggie burgers on parchment paper
Cooked veggie burgers on parchment paper - Nedim Bajramovic/Shutterstock

Whether you're making Southern-fried chickpea burgers or spicy black bean burgers, your homemade mix may need adjusting with the help of extra ingredients. If your resulting mixture is still too wet, you may need another dry item to keep everything intact. Most veggie burger recipes call for a small portion of cooked grains, breadcrumbs, or both to give burgers the right amount of texture. For grains, try cooked and cooled white or brown rice, quinoa, or barley. Breadcrumbs, oats, and even flax meal can serve as additional binding agents for your veggie burgers. These ingredients also soak up excess moisture and aid in the formation of uniform patties. On the contrary, if you find yourself with a dry or crumbly veggie mixture, play around with adding extra barbecue sauce, a small spoonful of nut butter, tomato paste, or Worcestershire sauce.

Regardless of the ingredients you choose, use recipes as loose guides. Depending on your selection of vegetables, legumes, and grains, you may need to add more of one ingredient to ensure your veggie burgers don't turn out overly mushy and soft. To set yourself up for success, make sure your vegetables are evenly chopped, and select legumes are not overly mashed. Beyond that, you have more than one way to achieve veggie burgers with an ultra-satisfying consistency.

Read the original article on Daily Meal