Pumpkin is the not-so-secret ingredient in these veggie burgers, which have real nutritional heft thanks to the addition of chickpeas and pumpkin seed protein powder.
Whether you’re determined to keep the spirit of summer alive or looking to transition into more autumnal foods, these pumpkin burgers span both worlds. You can make a double batch: The finished patties freeze beautifully.
Optional condiment: pumpkin hummus (mix pumpkin purée into plain hummus)
We like this organic pumpkin purée. Photo courtesy Farmer’s Market Foods.
1. PREHEAT the oven to 425°F and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Lightly grease and set aside.
2. HEAT the olive oil in a medium saucepan over moderate heat. When it is shimmering, add the garlic and onions, sautéing until aromatic and lightly golden brown. This should take no more than 6 to 8 minutes; be careful not to overdo it or you could burn the garlic.
3. DEGLAZE the pan with the balsamic vinegar, turn off the heat and let the mix cool for 10 minutes.
4. ROUGHLY MASH the chickpeas in a separate bowl, with a fork or potato masher. Keep the texture fairly coarse so that the burger maintains a satisfying bite. Add in the pumpkin purée, mustard, spices and herbs, mixing well to incorporate. When cool enough to handle…
5. ADD the sautéed vegetables and pumpkin seed protein powder; stir to combine. Mix thoroughly, making sure that there are no pockets of dry ingredients. The mixture should be soft but manageable—something you can fairly easily mold into patties that will hold their shape. Season with salt and pepper to taste. With slightly moistened hands…
6. MEASURE between 1/3 and 1/2 cup of the burger mixture for each patty, and form into round, flat pucks. Space them out evenly on the sheet at least 1 inch apart. Bake for 15 minutes, flip and bake 10 more minutes, until golden brown. Let cool for 10 to 15 minutes before removing from the sheet.
7. SERVE while still hot, or cool completely before freezing and storing (for up to 6 months).