Grilled Veggie Burgers

Grilled Veggie Burger
Prep Time: 
35 minutes prep time + 1 hour chill time
Number of Servings: 
4 large burgers
Recipe Source: 
Where There’s Smoke by Barton Seaver ($30.00, Sterling, 2013)


  • 2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 shallot or small onion, minced
  • 1 clove garlic, grated on a Microplane grater or very finely minced
  • 2 Tbsp chopped walnuts
  • 2 tsp smoked sweet paprika
  • 4 pitted prunes, roughly chopped
  • 1 medium beet, boiled in water to cover until tender, peeled, and shredded on the large holes of a box grater
  • 2 Tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 2 cups cooked brown rice (follow instructions on the package)
  • 1 (15-oz) can black beans, drained and briefly rinsed
  • 3 Tbsp oat bran or instant oatmeal
  • 1 large egg (optional)
  • Kosher salt
  • 4 brioche buns, toasted


  1. Heat 1 1/2 tablespoons of the oil in a small skillet over medium heat. Cook shallot and garlic until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add walnuts and paprika, toss to combine, and cook 1 more minute. Add prunes, shredded beet, and vinegar. Stir to combine and remove from heat.
  2. In a large bowl, combine beet mixture with rice, beans, oat bran, and egg, if using; season generously with salt. Stir with some force to mash most of beans and rice into a tacky paste that still has some chunks. Taste for seasoning and adjust if necessary.
  3. Chill mixture for at least an hour.
  4. Form chilled mixture into four patties, each about 1-inch thick. Brush patties with remaining 1/2 tablespoon olive oil, and then sear them directly over the coals of a medium fire flavored with a few wood chips. When patties begin to crisp and brown, carefully flip them over and cook for another few minutes.
  5. Rotate grill grate so patties are away from the fire, and cover the grill to heat them all the way through, about 5 minutes. Meanwhile, toast buns over the fire.
  6. Serve veggie patties on toasted brioche buns.
Nutrition Info: 

 395 Calories, 15g Protein, 62 g Carbohydrates, 13 g Fiber, 11g Total fat, 70 mg Sodium. ★★ Manganese, Folate, and Magnesium.


Barton Seaver

Barton Seaver is one of the world’s leading sustainable seafood experts and educators. Before leaving the restaurant industry to pursue his interests in sustainable food systems, he was an award-winning chef leading top seafood restaurants in Washington, DC. After traveling the world with the National Geographic Society, he translated his experiences into his leadership in the area of sustainable seafood innovations.

He is the founder of Coastal Culinary Academy, a multi-platform initiative that seeks to increase seafood consumption through seafood-specific culinary education for all levels of cooks.

Barton resides in coastal Maine, a stone's throw away from a working waterfront, with his wife, son and their flock of heritage chickens.

As a member of the United States Culinary Ambassador Corp, Barton facilitates international conversations on sustainability and the role of food in resource management and public health. As the Director of the Sustainable Seafood and Health Initiative at the Harvard School of Public Health, Barton led initiatives to inform consumers and institutions about how our choices for diet and menus can promote healthier people, resilient ecosystems, more secure food supplies, and thriving communities. He also served as a Senior Advisor in Sustainable Seafood Innovations at the University of New England and as a Sustainability Fellow at the New England Aquarium.

An internationally recognized speaker, Barton has delivered lectures, seminars, and demos to a multitude of audiences. He has written seven seafood-centric books, including For Cod and Country, Two If By Sea, American Seafood and The Joy of Seafood. Seaver has contributed to Coastal Living, The Coastal Table, Cooking Light, Every Day with Rachael Ray, Fine Cooking, Fortune, Martha Stewart’s Whole Living, The New York Times, O: The Oprah Magazine, Saveur, the Washington Post, among many others. He has appeared on 60 Minutes, CNN, NPR, 20/20 and the TED stage. Seaver hosted In Search of Food on the Ovation Network and Eat: The History of Food on National Geographic TV.