These spicy vegan nacho burgers are made with lentil patties topped with creamy tahini nacho cheese and piled high with your favorite nacho toppings.
"Whatcha making there?"
"Oh. So you're going to eat both of them them?" :(
Sorry. I can't not make that stupid nacho joke in any post involving nacho anything. Also, in my defense, it did happen. My husband is as big a dork as me.
Anyhow, welcome to installment number two in my series of vegan recipes leading up to the Superbowl, coming from a lady who doesn't even watch it. I thought this would be perfect though.
Here's how this recipe works: the burger is made from lentils seasoned up with Tex-Mex spices, and it's topped with vegan nacho cheese made from tahini, and whatever else you'd put on your nachos. I went with avocado slices, red onions, jalapeño slices, and salsa. Guacacmole would be nice too, but I was feeling a little lazy for that. If you want a guac recipe though, grab one here.
Why tahini cheese? Because it's awesome, and takes two minutes to make. If you're not a fan of tahini, try my nacho sweet potato cheese. It takes a little more effort, but it's awesome and you can use the leftovers for dipping chips while you cheer on your team.
Vegan Lentil Nacho Burgers
For the Burgers
- 1 cup dried brown lentils
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- ½ cup finely chopped walnuts
- About ½ cup panko breadcrumbs
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon ancho chili powder
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- Oil for grilling
For the Tahini Cheese
- ¼ cup tahini
- ¼ cup unflavored soy or almond milk, or more, as needed
- 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast flakes
- 1 tablespoon sriracha hot sauce
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
- ¼ teaspoon salt, or more, to taste
- 6 burger buns
- avocado slices or guacamole
- sliced fresh or pickled jalapeño
- sliced red onion
- shredded lettuce
Make the Burgers
Place the lentils into a small saucepan with 3 cups of water. Place over high heat and bring to a boil. Lower heat and allow to simmer, uncovered, for about 25 minutes, until the lentils are just shy of being fully cooked and still a tiny bit firm at their centers. Add water to the pot during cooking if it all dries up. Once finished cooking, drain any excess water and set the lentils aside to coll while you prep the remaining ingredients.
Place the lentils into a large mixing bowl. Add the onion, garlic, walnut, ½ cup panko, vinegar, cumin, ancho chili powder, cayenne, salt, and pepper. Dig in with your hands and mix everything up. Test the mixture by pressing some together in your hands. If it seems too squishy and doesn't hold together, add a bit more panko and try mashing a small portion of the lentils with a fork.
Lightly oil the bottom of a large nonstick skillet and place it over medium heat. Shape the mixture into 4 to 6 patties, transferring each directly to the skillet after shaping. Avoid crowding the skillet, and work in batches if needed, adding oil to the skillet as needed between batches. Cook each patty until browned on the bottom, about 4 to 5 minutes. Carefully flip and cook 4 to 5 minutes more, until browned on the other side.
Make the Tahini Nacho Cheese
Whisk all ingredients together in a small bowl, thinning with as much milk as is needed. Taste test and adjust seasonings if needed.
Stuff the burgers into buns, and top with tahini nacho cheese and toppings of choice. Serve.
I mixed everything up for my burgers with a food processor, but in hindsight I didn't think that was necessary, so the recipe calls for a mixing bowl. You can uuse a food processor if you're inclined to, just be careful not to overblend everything.
Nutrition information does not include toppings other than tahini nacho cheese sauce.