Black Bean, Sweet Potato & Oat Veggie Balls

The meatless veggie burger should be a familiar one to vegetarians/vegans. Far from being boring as some carnivores might scoff, they are a delicious smorgasbord of versatile ingredients and a great way to unleash one’s creativity. The basic veggie burger typically uses beans and other starchy vegetables as a binding ingredient, while nuts, seeds, grains, tofu, herbs and spices add texture, flavour and colours. Check out an excellent veggie burger tutorial here.

My first experience with veggie burgers came from Amy’s burger range. Initially dubious, I was amazed at how tasty a mish-mash of vegetables could be. Sadly my pitiful student income could only afford them when they were on discount, and so the veggie burgers were a rare treat.

But it shouldn’t be the case. Except for some chopping, veggie burgers are simple to prepare and easily scaled up and stored for future lunches/dinner. So I thought I’d give them a go. My choice of ingredients: black beans, sweet potatoes, carrots, rolled oats and spices. I also made them into balls rather than patties just because balls are more fun!

Slightly sweet from the sweet potato, these veggie balls are also a textural treat from the doughy beans and chewy oats. Make a big batch to tide you through your studies! I learnt that patience goes a long way in achieving the perfect crispy exterior. On the first try the balls suffered in texture but after increasing the baking time to 40 minutes on the second try and they came out better, with a crackly crust surrounding a slightly crumbly centre. I still hope to improve on the texture to make it more firm, which may require further adjustments to the baking time and temperature.

Everybody knows a good burger (or meatballs) should be accompanied by a great sauce. These were delectable with nutritional yeast cheese sauce, but also great naked, with the natural sweetness of sweet potato shining through. Feeling too lazy to whip up a sauce? Ketchup would do too!

Black Bean, Sweet Potato & Oat Veggie Balls
Recipe Type: Sides
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 6 golf-sized balls
Ingredients
  • 1/2 15-oz can black beans, drained and rinsed or 3/4 cup cooked black beans (prepared from 60 g dried beans), divided
  • 1/2 cup sweet potato puree (prepared from steamed or boiled sweet potatoes)
  • 1/4 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup chopped carrots
  • 2 roasted garlic cloves or 1 clove raw garlic, minced
  • Herbs: dried basil
  • Spices: cumin, cayenne pepper
Instructions
  1. In a bowl, mash half of the black beans.
  2. In another large bowl, combine the mashed beans with the remaining beans and all the other ingredients. Mix very well to combine into a sticky dough.
  3. Form into balls or patties.
  4. Chill in the refrigerator for one hour to allow it to firm up. Extra balls or patties can also be frozen at this stage.
  5. Bake for 30-40 minutes in oven preheated to 375°F/170°C, rotating every 10 minutes. If using frozen balls, allow them to defrost before cooking.
Notes
Vegan.
 

Here are some additional ingredient ideas for veggie burgers (curated from my favourite Amy burgers!)

  • Grains: oats, quinoa, buckwheat, millet, bulgur, rice, bread crumbs, wheat bran, wheat germ
  • Beans & Legumes: black beans, kidney beans, pinto beans, soy beans, chickpeas, lentils
  • Starchy veggies: potato, sweet potato, pumpkin, yam
  • Other veggies: carrots, corn, peppers, zucchini, celery, mushrooms, tomatoes
  • Nuts & Seeds: almonds, walnuts, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, flax seeds
  • Seasonings: onion, garlic, chipotle, chili, cilantro, mustard, nutritional yeast
  • Others: tofu

Save some money and make your own nutritious tasty veggie burgers!

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  • sarah - Ack- in response to your last comment- you’ve convinced me to give eggplant another chance( I refuse to admit there’s a veggie I don’t like!) . I believe I tasted babaganoush when I was much younger, but I don’t remember it much…I do love tahini though, especially in sweet things. I’ve a RAGING sweet tooth.
    Speaking of tahini , I bet these veggie balls would be great dipped in it!

    You’re right. Veg burgers are so much more exciting than a plain’ ole, snooze-worthy burger of just meat. I don’t like the latter at all actually.
    I think I’m going to make these, they’re filled with some of my favourite things!
    I’ve made something quite similair before. But I rolled mine in ground flax before baking, for a crunchy exterior.
    There’s just something about picking up little balls , with your fingers, and dunking them in a tasty dip, which is fun & childlike.

    Hope you’re enjoying the weekend
    :)
    XxxReplyCancel

    • Sabrina - I’ve been thinking on how to improve the crunch and ground flax is a great idea! However I dont have flax seeds at the moment so I might try breadcrumbs or panko.

      You might want to check out Edible Perspective’s Tehe Burger and Oh She Glow’s Perfect Burger. I love both these websites!

      Hope you enjoyed your weekend too and have a fabulous week ahead :)ReplyCancel

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