These beet tempeh veggie burgers are kind of like a homemade version of Beyond Meat in flavour and texture. They’re gluten-free, and can probably even be made soy-free by swapping out the tempeh for chickpeas and the tamari for liquid aminos!
Almost a year ago, I published what would become my most popular blog recipe to date: Homemade Beyond Meat Burgers. At the time, I was pretty darn pleased with the recipe. I found the texture, flavour, and colour to resemble Beyond Meat burgers enough to justify calling them “Homemade Beyond Meat Burgers.” And yet, something inside of me still knew that I could do better–that I could offer something even more beefy tasting and textured to the world.
Many of you shared this opinion. The main constructive feedback that I got about the original recipe was that it missed the mark in the texture department: it was too moist in the middle to consider it a true Beyond Meat copycat. Overall, you guys liked the flavour, but the texture missed the mark.
Well, I went back to the drawing board, and after months of tinkering, I’ve finally come up with a recipe worth sharing. My family and I freaked out when we first tasted these! We were absolutely floored by how closely they resembled meat burgers.
I actually prefer this beet tempeh burger it to my original “Beyond Meat” recipe. I find it more “meaty,” it holds together better, and because it has some vegan butter and mayo in it, it has some of the fat that ground beef would also provide in a beef burger. While this recipe still contains some soy in the form of tempeh and tamari (Beyond Meat is soy-free), you can probably swap out the tempeh for chickpeas and the tamari for coconut aminos. Let me know how that goes!
These burgers are made with the following ingredients: tempeh, walnuts, mushrooms, short grain brown rice, oat flour, ground flax, barbecue sauce, Dijon mustard, nutritional yeast, balsamic vinegar, tamari, Miyokos vegan butter, vegan mayonnaise, vegan Worcestershire sauce, garlic, salt and pepper, smoked paprika, and finely shredded beet for a punch of beefy colour.
As I said, all of the ingredients are ultra healthy. You might think it odd that a burger recipe would call for vegan butter and vegan mayonnaise, but they are absolutely essential for creating the mouth feel that you would get in a meat burger. (Also, remember that Beyond Meat burgers contain both canola oil and coconut oil, so if we are going for a copycat recipe, we’re going to need to add some oil to our recipe, too.) Just remember to buy a vegan butter that is free from refined vegetable oils–I use Miyokos cultured vegan butter exclusively because it is made with organic coconut oil and cashews. As far as a vegan mayo goes, I would recommend Chosen Foods vegan mayo, made with avocado oil and aquafaba. If you are unable to find Miyokos vegan butter, you can try using organic refined (deodorized) coconut oil in its place.
how to make these beet tempeh burgers:
Aside from the phenomenal flavour and texture, what’s really nice about these burgers is that you don’t need any fancy food processors or other kitchen appliances. You read that correctly: this is a mix, mash, and press kind of recipe. To make them, you’ll need to have 2 cups of cooked short grain brown rice ready to go. From there, the process is incredibly simple.
Simple though the recipe is, it is important to note that refrigerating the mixture before cooking is absolutely essential for them to hold together properly. I cannot guarantee that the burgers will have the same result if you do not refrigerate the mixture for at least one hour beforehand.
Finally, for best results, I recommend cooking the burgers on a skillet for 3-4 minutes per side after baking them so that they get an irresistibly crispy exterior. You can also melt vegan cheese on top of them at this point.
Here is a step by step description of how to make the burgers. You can also find the steps on the recipe card.
- Start by finely chopping one 1/2-pound block of organic tempeh and place it in a bowl. Lightly mash it with a potato masher.
- Next, add 2 cups of cooked short grain brown rice, 1 cup of finely chopped walnuts, 2 cups of finely chopped mushrooms, 1/2 of a very finely shredded peeled beet, 3/4 cup of oat flour, 2 tbsp of ground flax, 4 garlic cloves, 2 tbsp of tamari, 2 tbsp of nutritional yeast, 1 tbsp of Worcestershire sauce, 2 tbsp of balsamic vinegar, 1 tbsp of Dijon mustard, 2 tbsp of barbecue sauce, 2 tbsp vegan butter, 2 tbsp of vegan mayo, a big pinch of salt and pepper, and 1 tsp of smoked paprika to the bowl.
- Stir everything together to incorporate, and then mash it with the potato masher to break down some of the rice and tempeh.
- Place the bowl in the fridge for at least 1 hour so that the mixture firms up.
- Form the burgers into 8 patties and bake at 375 degrees F for 15 minutes per side. Then, finish them on a skillet for 3-4 minutes per side, melting vegan cheese on top in the last couple of minutes.
I mentioned these above, but it never hurts to highlight these tips again:
- Cook the brown rice before starting this recipe. You will need 2 cups of cooked short grain brown rice for this recipe, which takes 45 minutes. I often cook the brown rice the day before I make this recipe.
- Make sure that you chop the mushrooms and walnuts very small, and that the beet is grated as finely as possible. This helps the burgers hold together.
- You can mix up the burgers the day before and refrigerate the mixture in an airtight container until ready to shape and bake.
Topping Ideas for These Burgers:
I went with vegan classic American toppings for these: my tempeh bacon, chipotle mayo, pickles, lettuce, tomato, red onion, mustard, and melted vegan cheese. Other topping ideas include:
- Lemon tahini sauce, tomato, sliced olives, and fresh spinach for a Mediterranean flair.
- Guacamole, cashew sour cream, and pico de gallo for a Mexican option.
- Raita, mango salsa or chutney, and baby greens for an Indian theme.
Use your imagination, and let me know some of the toppings you come up with in the comments! I’d love to hear.
I think that this is the most excited I’ve been about a recipe in awhile! I’d love to hear how you like it. Please leave a comment and rating below if you try it, and post a photo to Instagram and tag it @upbeet.kitchen and #upbeetkitchen!
- 1 (250 gram) block of organic tempeh
- 2 cups COOKED brown rice
- 1 cup finely chopped walnuts
- 2 cups finely chopped mushrooms
- 1/2 a medium beet, peeled and very finely grated
- 3/4 cup oat flour
- 2 tbsp ground flax
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tbsp tamari
- 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 2 tbsp barbecue sauce
- 2 tbsp vegan butter (see note)
- 2 tbsp vegan mayonnaise (see note)
- 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 1 tbsp vegan Worcestershire sauce (such as Wizard’s brand)
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- 1/2 tsp chili flakes
- Big pinch fine sea salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Next, add 2 cups of cooked short grain brown rice, 1 cup of finely chopped walnuts, 2 cups of finely chopped mushrooms, 1/2 of a very finely shredded peeled beet, 3/4 cup of oat flour, 2 tbsp of ground flax, 4 garlic cloves, 2 tbsp of tamari, 2 tbsp of nutritional yeast, 1 tbsp of Worcestershire sauce, 2 tbsp of balsamic vinegar, 1 tbsp of Dijon mustard, 2 tbsp of barbecue sauce, 2 tbsp vegan butter, 2 tbsp of vegan mayo, 1 tsp of smoked paprika, 1/2 tsp of chili flakes, and a big pinch each salt and pepper to the bowl.
- Place the bowl in the fridge for at least 1 hour so that the mixture firms up.
- A few minutes before an hour is up, line a baking sheet with parchment paper and preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
- Form the burgers into 8 patties and bake for 30 minutes total, flipping them after 15 minutes.
- Warm a couple teaspoons of heat-tolerant oil, such as avocado or grapeseed, on a cast iron skillet over medium heat. Once warm, finish cooking the burgers on the skillet for 3-4 minutes per side, melting vegan cheese on top in the last couple of minutes.
- Serve the burgers on buns with toppings of choice. (See post for my suggestions!)
The vegan butter that I recommend is Miyokos brand.
Keywords: beet tempeh veggie burgers, beyond meat copycat, meaty veggie burgers