The Big Vegan Burger Post: 18 Creative Ways to Eat Bean Burgers (+ how to make them so they don’t fall apart)

Posted by:Lindsay S. Nixon

Bean burgers are my bestie.

When I don’t have any other food prepared ahead, I make bean burgers.

When I come home from a long trip, I make bean burgers.

When money is tight, I make bean burgers.

When I haven’t been to the store in over a week because…whatever, I MAKE BEAN BURGERS.

I’m pretty sure I made my 6-ingredient, 15-minute Quick Burgers every week in 2015.

Bean Burgers a year-round “universal” food for us.


  • Crumbled on salads
  • Crumbled into a marinara sauce (serve with pasta)
  • Shaped into balls for “meatballs” (serve with spaghetti)
  • Serve as a “croquette” with a dressing
  • Use as “taco filling”
  • With mashed potatoes on top for “shepherd's pie”
  • Slipped into mac n cheese
  • Bean burger mix stuffed into mushrooms (then bake) = appetizer
  • “Deconstructed Salad-Style” (see below)

We also eat them as “burgers” or in a wrap, too ;)

Bean burgers are also our go-to “Road Trip” food.

We love to pack them for long drives or long flights.

I’ve also had success making them in hotel rooms AND in an RV using a little tiny toaster oven.

Since all of the ingredients are shelf-stable and do not need refrigeration, they’re great in those types of settings AND why I go to them when there’s NOTHING in my fridge.

I even keep a few “emergency” mustard and ketchup packets at home to make sure I always have what I need!


You can build an entire meal around bean burgers, even if you don’t consider yourself great at “figuring out dinner.”

Here’s my formula:

Bean burger + satiating starch + vegetable + sauce (optional)

Starch = bun/bread, tortillas, rice, pasta, potatoes, grains, corn, squashes, or peas

This plays out in my “8 Unique Ways to Eat Bean Burgers” (above)

For example:

  • Bean burger + marinara + pasta + broccoli
  • Bean burger + bun + salad (or mixed vegetables)
  • Bean burger + rice + brown gravy
  • Bean burger + corn tortillas + lettuce + salsa
  • Bean burger + baked fries + kale + ketchup
  • Bean burger + wrap + vegetable soup
  • Bean burger + potato salad + coleslaw
  • Bean burger + corn on the cobb + grilled veggies
  • Bean burger as “meatballs” + red pepper sauce + peas
  • Bean burger stuffed into bell peppers with rice
  • Bean burger + spinach salad + sweet potato + peas
  • Bean burger + mashed potatoes + peas (shepherd’s pie)
  • “Deconstructed Salad-Style” (see below)

This is what I came up with just now, there are a million options -- use whatever you’ve got and if you think what you have does “go together” serve your odds and ends with a sauce or gravy you love (or salsa!) and magically IT WORKS.

I hope I have sold you on Bean Burgers… because they’re pretty awesome.


I also LOVE what Carmen did here with the Chick-Beet Burger from the Meal Mentor app

Carmen says, “Super lazy working at home beet burger deconstructed lunch. Didn't feel like turning on my oven or dirtying the food processor so ingredients became a salad LOL”

What a clever way to beat the heat AND enjoy the flavors with less work!

Carmen’s “deconstructed burger” approach would also make the meal more satiating and slimming if you’re trying to cut calories or lose weight (or you’re a volume eater in general). (See the calorie episode on my podcast for more information). 


If you have problems with your bean burgers falling apart, I have a few suggestions.

#1 Refrigerate the mixture for 15 minutes before baking.

#2 It’s all in the formation.

#3 Accept that your burgers won’t win any modeling competitions.

In a world on constant “food porn” and food imagery (especially on social media) I get overwhelmed or down on myself because my food looks so… simple.


I’m trying to embrace imperfection in all areas of my life, including feeling GREAT about my meals that definitely don’t look like they belong in a magazine, but were made with MY loving hands, in my kitchen and are a celebration of the love I have for myself and my health (rather than impressing Instagram).

I’m a huge fan of saying to myself before meals “Wow this is so healthy and nourishing and I’m excited to eat it and fuel my body with this food. I did a GREAT job here.”

Seriously, this is how my food looks 99% of the time too:

I want to thank Christin for posting this picture and being so “real world.”

There is also this great option for fuss-free!


Admittedly, I only make bean burgers “on demand” because food only goes to my freezer to be lost for a year {gross}

HOWEVER, I know many of you are freezer enthusiasts… SO if you’ve been wondering

“For those of you who freeze burgers, how do eat them later? Do you hear them from frozen or let them defrost and then heat? Warm in a pan, microwave, or oven?”

I’m sharing with you a few helpful insights from Meal Mentor app.

Maureen L. “I thaw in fridge and microwave.”

Claudia B. “I thaw 1-1.5min in the microwave, then grill on the contact grill”

Ali K. “I will defrost them in the fridge and then pan fry or bakeor I will wrap in foil and bake for 15-30 mins until thawed, then unwrap and finish in the oven or in a pan until warm/crispy.”

Jody C. “I thaw them in the fridge then eat at room temp.”

Amanda R. “I have them individually wrapped (fully cooked) in the freezer. I unwrap one, put it on a plate, and microwave it (frozen) for a minute and a half.”

Paula W. “I store them individually wrapped and placed in a freezer bag. Then I take them out one at a time and heat on the toast setting of the toaster oven. Perfect!”

When I have “leftovers” I reheat them on "warm" in the toaster oven. It’s probably the slowest method, but it adds a certain crispness that my mouth likes.


During the summer, bean burgers go from “bestie” to “boyfriend.” We get together a lot ;)

I place mine (uncooked) onto the grill. If the burger is a firm one I put it straight on my grill. If it’s a more delicate bean-based burger, I cook it on foil on the grill.

Meal Mentor App Faves for Omnivores

7 recipes best for serving meat eaters

(These recipes are from my meal planning app, users voted these as “best” for serving omnivores)

  • Chick Beet Burger
  • Bistro Beet Burger
  • Buffalo Rancher Burger
  • Quick Burgers
  • Big Easy Cajun Burger
  • Eggplant Falafel Burger
  • Tamale Burgers

I loved this added comment from Ashleigh, Mainthing is that any option you choose they need to understand it will not taste like a hamburger.”

Speaking of the Eggplant Falafel Burgers…. How is THIS for inspiring?

“Before Meal Mentor I would have Morningstar buffalo Chik'n patties in my freezer for when I was in a rush or feeling lazy about cooking.... last week I made 24 eggplant falafel burgers and put them in my freezer. I eat them with mustard and Sriracha. They are my new go to.”

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