Sweet Potato, Black Bean, and Quinoa Burger

Sweet Potato, Black Bean, and Quinoa Burger | A Thought For Food

As a teenager and newbie pescatarian, veggie burgers never did much for me. I consumed them when I first stopped eating red meat and poultry 16 years ago, but only so that I'd feel included while everyone else chomped into hotdogs, hamburgers and grilled chicken. Over the years, I've learned that veggie burgers can be so much more than what I was served back then.

Sweet Potato, Black Bean, and Quinoa Burger | A Thought For Food
Sweet Potato, Black Bean, and Quinoa Burger | A Thought For Food
Sweet Potato, Black Bean, and Quinoa Burger | A Thought For Food

The joy of making them at home is that you can tailor them to your preferences, giving the patties some spice and all the textures you desire. When Negra Modelo reached out about partnering with them on their "Perfect Complement" campaign, there was no doubt that I was going to do a sweet potato burger. Working off the caramel and brown sugar notes in the beer, I roasted the sweet potato to bring out similar flavors.  A beer like Negra Modelo goes well with spicy food, so chopped jalapeño and a bit of smoked paprika felt like a natural fit. But, really, it wouldn't be a burger without some messy toppings. While you could easily throw blue cheese on there (and I fully support that), I went with a creamy, zingy avocado spread to brighten things up and purple cabbage slaw for crunch.

Disclaimer: Thank you to Negra Modelo for sponsoring this post. It's a pleasure working with brands who support my style of cooking.  All opinions expressed on my site are my own.

Sweet Potato, Black Bean, and Quinoa Burger

Servings Serves 4 (2 patties per person)


For the veggie burgers

3 or 4 sweet potatoes (3/4 lb.), cut in half lengthwise
3/4 cup chopped white onion
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 jalapeño pepper, seeds removed and diced
1 15.5 ounce can black beans, rinsed and drained
¼ cup all-purpose flour (or gluten-free flour)
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 cup cooked quinoa
Olive oil Salt

For the avocado spread

1 avocado, pit removed
1/8 cup cilantro leaves
1 garlic clove, chopped
½ teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons white wine vinegar

For the slaw

1 cup thinly sliced red cabbage
2 tablespooons rice wine vinegar
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons sugar

4 hamburger buns


For the veggie burgers

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Place sweet potato halves on the baking sheet and drizzle with 1 ½ tablespoons olive oil and sprinkle with kosher salt. Cook sweet potato for 30 minutes, flipping them once halfway through.

2. Meanwhile, heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and season with ½ teaspoon salt. Cook for 2 minutes and then reduce heat to low and cook for an additional 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and set aside.

3. Once the sweet potato is cooked enough that a sharp knife easily cuts into it, remove from the oven. Let cool and then peel the skin away from the sweet potato. Transfer the flesh to a mixing bowl and mash with a fork.

4. Stir in cooked onion and garlic and chopped jalapeno.

5. Gently mix in black beans, followed by the flour, garlic powder and smoked paprika. Once they are completely incorporated into the mixture, mix in the quinoa.

6. Line a plate with parchment paper. Scoop ¼ cup of mixture into your hands and mold into patties. Place on lined plate. Repeat with remaining mixture. Refrigerate patties for 30 minutes.

7. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add burgers and cook for 3-4 minutes on each side, or until brown. Transfer cooked patties to a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil and cook in the 375 degree oven for 15-20 minutes (or longer to dry them out and firm them up), flipping them half way through.

For the avocado spread

1. Using a blender (or an immersion blender), puree the avocado, cilantro, garlic, ½ teaspoon salt and white wine vinegar until smooth.

For the slaw

1. In a bowl, toss the sliced red cabbage with rice wine vinegar, salt and sugar. Let sit for 10 minutes.

How to Build the Burger
Place two veggie burgers on top of the bottom half of the hamburger bun. Top with slaw. Spread avocado mixture on the top half of the bun and place on top of the slaw. Serve with an icy cold Negra Modelo.