Black Bean Burger Recipe

black bean burger recipe
Ananda Headshot Ananda Kaplan

For many of us, the arrival of summer means it’s time to fire up the grill. Grilling helps us beat the heat in the kitchen and can give food a pleasing smoky aroma. At Anticancer Lifestyle, we recommend a plant-based diet, but it can be hard to find satisfying plant-based protein options to throw on the grill which is why we’re excited to share our homemade black bean burger recipe.

We’ve got you covered!  Our homemade Black Bean Burgers are so delicious that even the meat eaters will be asking for a bite. These fuss-free burgers are vegan, dairy- and gluten-free, and provide our bodies with gut supporting fiber, anti-inflammatory omega 3’s, heart healthy fats and immune boosting antioxidants. Your taste buds will thank you as you enjoy the earthy umami flavor from the mushrooms, which blends beautifully with the smooth creaminess of the potato, a touch of sweetness from the peas, a crunch from the sunflower seeds and the carefully balanced spices.

These delicious patties hold their shape before, during and after grilling. Easy to throw together on a weeknight, they are still special enough to serve at a summer cookout. Crisped on the outside, tender in the middle, and packed full of bold, smoky flavors, our Black Bean Burgers capture the essence of summer celebration.

Homemade Black Bean Burger



  • 3 Tbsp high heat oil (avocado, coconut, sunflower), divided
  • 1/2 cup mushrooms, chopped
  • 1 medium or 2 small red potatoes
    • Potato replacing options: 1 green plantains mashed, 1 cup cooked whole grain
  • 15 oz. cooked black beans, rinsed (if using canned ensure it is BPA free or in glass)
  • ½ cup sunflower seeds
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp coriander
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2-1 tsp chili powder (optional)
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 Tbsp oat flour
  • 3 Tbsp ground flax
  • 1/4 cup peas


  1. Chop the mushrooms and sauté over medium heat with 1 tablespoon of oil for 6-8 minutes until softened. Remove from heat and let cool.
  2. Place potato in a pot and cover with water, then heat over high heat to bring to a boil. Boil until fork tender, approximately 10-15 minutes once water has come to a boil. Remove potato and let cool and dry.
  3. In a large bowl, mash black beans and potato. (If using plantain or cooked grains, mash them with the beans.)
  4. Add the sunflower seeds, garlic, spices, ground flax, and oat flour. Stir to combine.
  5. Add the peas and mushrooms and gently mix to combine.  Allow the mixture to sit for 5-10 minutes to soak up the moisture and allow the flavors to come together.
  6. Form the mixture into patties and refrigerate for 30 minutes to firm up. If available, a large round cooking cutter can help form the patties. You can also freeze each patty individually and allow them to thaw in the refrigerator for 4 hours before cooking.

Cooking Options

Grilling: Heat the grill and rub grill with a sliced onion (this helps the grill become non-stick). Brush veggie burgers with a little oil. When the grill is hot, grill for 5-7 minutes per side.

Skillet: Heat up a pan over medium heat and add 1-2 tablespoons of oil. When oil is hot, cook veggie burger for 5-7 minutes per side.

Bake: Preheat oven to 400 degrees and place veggie burgers on a baking sheet with oiled parchment paper and bake for 10-15 minutes.

Serve with a carrot apple slaw, herb yogurt sauce and in a collard green wrap*

*Collard Green Wrap

  • 6 large collard green leaves with stem removed


  1. Heat a large pot with water to a simmer
  2. Add each collard green leaf one at a time to simmering water for 30 seconds
  3. Remove and place on a paper towel to dry
  4. Repeat with each leaf

*Carrot Apple Slaw

  • 2 carrots, shredded
    ·      1 apple, shredded
    ·      ½ lemon, juiced
    ·      1 tbsp olive oil
    ·      1 tbsp fresh parsley, cilantro or mint
    ·      ¼ tsp salt


  1. Mix all ingredients together.

*Herbed Yogurt Sauce

  • 1 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon chopped herbs (dill, basil, cilantro, parsley)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • ½ lemon, juiced
  • ¼ tsp paprika
  • ¼ tsp salt


  1. Mix all together

Other “Bun” Options

  • Lettuce wrap
  • Sweet potato toast rounds
  • Grilled eggplant or zucchini rounds
  • Two slices of a large tomato
  • Open faced whole wheat bun
  • Open faced gluten free bun

Other Topping Options

  • Sauerkraut
  • Avocado
  • Tomato
  • Sprouts
  • Red Onion
  • Arugula
  • Butter lettuce
  • Pickles
  • Cucumbers
  • Mustard

Nutrient Highlights

Avocado Oil: Heart-healthy fat that can increase the “good “cholesterol and reduce triglyceride levels in the body. Packed full of antioxidants to support eye health, and anti-inflammatory properties shown to help reduce symptoms of arthritis.

Mushrooms: Make sure to cook your mushrooms. Cooking increases digestibility, degrades a possible toxic compound found in raw mushrooms, and releases nutrients that are stored in their thick cell walls. Mushrooms are a very good source of dietary fiber (beta glucan), are rich in selenium (an antioxidant), and are one of the only foods that can store vitamin D when exposed to the sun.  They contain anti-inflammatory, anticancer, and immune-boosting properties.

Potato: One of the highest sources of potassium, which allows our body to increase circulation and balance our blood pressure by excreting any excess sodium in the body. Potatoes also have a good amount of fiber to aid in digestive health.

Black Beans: Great source of fiber, healthy fats and protein to help you feel fuller longer and more satisfied. Beans are unique due to their high amounts of resistant starch (a form of fiber) that is not broken down in the upper GI tract but makes it to the bacteria in the large intestine. In the gut, the fiber is converted into short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs), which play a key role in prevention and treatment of metabolic syndrome, bowel disorders, insulin sensitivity and certain cancers.

Sunflower SeedsGreat source of healthy fats to reduce inflammation and support heart health. Also a great source of zinc to support a strong immune system.

Garlic: Considered a prebiotic, meaning it feeds the “good” bacteria in our gut and promotes a healthy digestive system. Research supports that the compounds in garlic, such as allicin, have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and cardioprotective properties. If you chop your garlic 10-15 minutes before using, it will have the maximum amount of active allicin.

Cumin: Good source of iron. Aids in digestion. Cumin is antioxidant and anti-inflammatory,

Coriander: It is the seed of cilantro, and is fragrant and flavorful along with anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory properties.

Paprika: Packed full of vitamin A along with lutein and zeaxanthin to support eye health. It also has a variety of antioxidants with anticancer effects (by fighting cell damage). Paprika can increase our “good” cholesterol (HDL) and reduce our “bad” cholesterol (LDL), decreasing the risk for heart disease and stroke.

Chili Powder: The capsaicin in the chilies has been shown to promote the secretion of endorphins as well as binding with nerve endings that sense pain. This can reduce the feeling of pain and help us feel better. It also assists in the increased secretion of digestive juices to ensure healthy intestines.

Turmeric and Black Pepper: Curcumin in turmeric is poorly absorbed in the bloodstream, so it should be combined with black pepper.  Black pepper contains a substance that enhances the absorption of curcumin by 2,000%.  Turmeric is a very powerful anti-inflammatory compound at the molecular level. It blocks the molecule that turns on inflammatory genes in our cells.  Turmeric increases the antioxidant capacity of our bodies by neutralizing free radicals , and stimulating our body’s own antioxidant enzymes.  

Oat Flour:  Full of soluble fiber (beta-glucan), which has been shown to slow digestion, increase satiety, and bind to cholesterol to excrete it out of the body. Oats also have plant chemicals that act as antioxidants to reduce damaging effects of chronic inflammation.

Ground Flax: Loaded with omega-3 fatty acids, flax has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Flax can take on a gel-like texture due to the high fiber content. This gel coats the gut and helps slow digestion to make you feel satisfied. It also helps bulk up stool and feed the friendly bacteria in your gut.

Green Peas:  A great source of plant-based protein content as well as high amounts of fiber to support a healthy digestive tract. Peas also have a high iron content that aids in adequate cellular oxygenation. The high fiber and protein content can play a role in maintaining desirable blood sugar levels.

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