Sweet Potato Quinoa Burgers (Gluten-Free and Vegan-Friendly)

Happy Nutrition Month!

I don’t know about you, but I’m getting pretty darn sick of this winter weather and cannot WAIT for spring to arrive!

Spring = sunshine. And warm weather. And patios. But most importantly, BARBECUING.

Need I say more?

If you’re going through BBQ withdrawal and are craving a burger, this is the perfect meatless recipe to satisfy your craving (and your waistline). I started out following a recipe from How Sweet It Is, but it ended up evolving into something a little bit different.

These burgers are hearty, a little bit spicy, and packed with superfoods like sweet potato, quinoa and coconut oil. Sweet potatoes are packed with vitamin A and carotenoids, which help promote healthy skin and vision. Combined with the quinoa, these burgers pack a protein- and fibre-packed punch! Plus they can be easily modified to be vegan and/or gluten-free :) I wish I took some more photos of these tasty morsels, but they looked so good I just couldn’t wait to eat them.

So… while you continue to wait impatiently for spring, at least you won’t go hungry…

Sweet Potato Quinoa Burgers
Makes 4 patties

Ingredients:
1 medium sweet potato
½ large red bell pepper, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
Pinch red pepper flakes
Sea salt and pepper, to taste
1 tbsp coconut oil
½ cup cooked quinoa
¼ cup whole wheat bread crumbs (I used gluten-free oats, pulsed in a food processor)
¼ cup parmesan cheese (use nutritional yeast for a vegan option – I used half of each)
3-4 tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped
1 egg (for a vegan option, combine 1 tbsp ground flax seed with about 3 tbsp water to make a flax “egg”)
2-3 tbsp sunflower seeds (or other seeds like chia or pumpkin.. whatever you have on hand)
1 tbsp peanut satay sauce or natural peanut butter

sweet potato burger

Directions:

  1. Pierce the sweet potato a few times with a fork and place on a microwave-safe plate. Microwave on high for about 5 minutes, until tender. Let cool; peel and place flesh in a large mixing bowl.
  2. In a medium frying pan, heat half the coconut oil over medium heat. Add the peppers, garlic, chili flakes, and a dash of salt and pepper and stir fry until the peppers are tender. Transfer to the mixing bowl.
  3. Add the remaining ingredients to the bowl and mix well to combine, mashing the sweet potato as you go. Put in the fridge to chill for about 10-15 minutes. *Note: if the mixture seems too wet, add some more breadcrumbs. If it seems too dry, add some water 1 tbsp at a time until you reach the desired consistency.
  4. Heat the remaining coconut oil in a frying pan on medium heat. Form the sweet potato mixture into 4 equally sized patties and fry until golden – about 4-5 minutes each side.
  5. Enjoy on a whole grain bun, or simply on a bed of organic greens topped with your favourite condiments! I just added a few slices of avocado to mine :) Happy eating!

Be Well xo

Southwest Veggie Burgers

I know, it’s yet another veggie burger recipe, but this one was delish and super healthy – brown rice, black beans, sweet potato… mmm. Did I mention it’s also vegan?? It was inspired by a recipe I found on my Whole Foods app! I will warn you that although tasty, these burgers don’t hold together very well when you flip them. I just reshaped them a bit after flipping them and they turned out just fine :)

Southwest Veggie Burgers

Yields 4 large patties

Ingredients:

1 cup cooked brown rice

1 cup no-salt-added black beans, rinsed and drained

1 cup cooked and mashed sweet potato

1/4 cup diced tomato

1/4 cup diced bell pepper

1/4 cup shredded carrots

1/4 cup chopped cilantro (unfortunately we didn’t have any fresh, so I had to used dried)

2 tbsp finely chopped onion (original recipe called for 3 green onions)

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 tbsp no-salt-added chili powder

1 tsp ground cumin

Pinch of red chili flakes

Dash of pepper

1 tbsp lime juice

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 400ºF. Cook the rice according to instructions.

2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Form the mixture into 4 large patties. Place on the baking sheet and bake, turning halfway through cooking, until browned and slightly crisp on the outside (about 30 minutes).

3. Serve on a whole grain bun with your favourite toppings! I had guacamole and salsa on top of mine with a little bit of cheese, and it was absolutely delightful.

Enjoy! :)

Roasted Red Pepper & Sweet Potato Soup

Some of you may recall me mentioning this soup earlier this week in a previous post. My mom clipped this recipe from an old Canadian Living magazine and we decided to try it. Although it takes a while for the vegetables to roast, the rest of the cooking process is quick and easy! I will definitely be making this soup again. It was fresh, filling, and absolutely packed with Vitamins A and C. I’m especially excited to try it again with fresh herbs from the new herb garden we bought my mom for mother’s day! We’ve never attempted to grow herbs before, so hopefully all goes well.

I hope you all have a healthy, happy long weekend! I’ll be heading up to my boyfriend’s cottage this weekend – one of my favourite places to unwind and relax :) I plan on making some tasty treats to bring up with me, so stay tuned for a new recipe or two next week!

Roasted Red Pepper & Sweet Potato Soup

Ingredients:

3 sweet red peppers, chopped

2 sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed (about 4 cups)

1 onion, chopped

3 gloves garlic

2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

1 tsp dried Italian herb seasoning

1/4 tsp each salt and pepper

4 cups reduced sodium vegetable or chicken broth

2/3 cup Balkan-style plain yogurt (optional)

2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley (optional)

Directions:

1. Toss the peppers, potatoes, onion, garlic, olive oil, Italian seasonings and salt and pepper in a large roasting pan. Roast at 425º F for 1 hour, stirring once.

2. Purée the vegetables and broth in a food processor, in batches. Strain into a large pot and whisk in 1 cup of water.

3. Bring the soup to a boil; cover, reduce heat, and simmer for about 5 minutes.

4. Stir the yogurt and parsley in a small bowl (if using). Serve dollops on bowls of soup.

Enjoy! :)

Meatless Monday: Veggie Pot Pie with a Sweet Potato Crust

Last night my mom tried this new recipe from Janet and Greta Podleski’s cookbook ‘Crazy Plates’. If you don’t know who these sisters are, they have a show on the Food Network called Eat, Shrink & Be Merry. It turned out great, so I thought I’d share it as this week’s Meatless Monday recipe!

Janet & Greta’s ‘Piled High Veggie Pot Pie’

Makes 6 servings

Filling Ingredients:

1 cup each chopped onions and red bell peppers

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 1/2 cups vegetable broth (reduced sodium, of course!)

2 cups peeled, cubed potatoes

1 cup sliced carrots

1 1/2 tsp dried rosemary

1/2 tsp dried thyme

1/4 tsp each salt & pepper

1 cup sliced asparagus pieces or sliced green beans (we had neither, so my mom used zucchini)

1/2 cup frozen green peas, thawed

3 tbsp all-purpose flour

1/4 cup chopped, fresh parsley

Sweet Potato Biscuit Crust Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 tbsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

3 tbsp butter or margarine, softened

3/4 cup cooked, mashed sweet potatoes

3/4 cup 1% milk, plus extra for brushing the top of the crust

Directions:

1. Spray a large, non-stick saucepan with non-stick spray. Add onions, red pepper, and garlic. Cook and stir over medium-high heat until vegetables begin to soften (about 4 minutes).

2. Add 2 cups broth, potatoes, carrots, rosemary, thyme, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer for 12 minutes, until potatoes are almost tender. Stir in asparagus and peas. Cook for 3 more minutes.

3. In a small bowl, mix 3 tablespoons of flour with the remaining 1/2 cup of vegetable broth until smooth. Add to vegetable mixture. Cook until bubbly and thickened. Stir in parsley. Transfer to a 2-quart casserole dish and set aside.

4. Preheat the oven to 425ºF. In a large bowl, combine flour, baking powder, and salt. Cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Whisk together sweet potatoes and milk, then add to flour mixture. Stir until a soft ball forms. Transfer dough to a lightly floured surface and roll or pat out to fit top of casserole. Place dough over vegetables. Brush with milk. Bake for 20 minutes, until crust is puffed up and golden brown. Let cool for 5 minutes before serving.

Nutritional Information (per serving)

320 calories

7.1 g fat (3.9 g saturated fat)

9.4 g protein

55.7 g carbohydrates

5.2 g fibre

16.8 mg cholesterol

628.3 mg sodium (a little high for my liking, but this could be greatly reduced by using low-sodium broth)

– Be Well xo