A couple cans, a few fresh ingredients, and some dairy-free tzatziki, and you’ve got healthy vegan falafel burgers for a quick weeknight meal. The recipe can even be doubled, making extra patties for a second dinner or for a unique lunch box sandwich.
According to Cans Get You Cooking, most Americans throw away spoiled fresh fruits and vegetables two times a week on average, wasting 15 to 20 percent of fresh produce each year. As they note, by keeping your pantry stocked with essential canned ingredients, you can create meals like these vegan falafel burgers using both canned and fresh ingredients to help avoid buying excess produce.
Special Diet Notes: Vegan Falafel Burgers
By ingredients, this recipe is dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, optionally gluten-free, nut-free, peanut-free, optionally soy-free, vegan, and vegetarian. Just be sure to choose your bread wisely and use a dairy-free tzatziki recipe. For the breadcrumbs and buns used in this vegan falafel burgers recipe, I like Rudi’s Bakery. They offer both organic (whole wheat) and gluten-free options, and their bakery is dairy-free.
Note that the patties for these vegan falafel burgers will be soft, so they are best pan-fried or baked. They won’t work well on the grill.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 1 small red onion, finely chopped
- 1 large garlic clove, minced
- 1 16-ounce can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup dry dairy-free bread crumbs (gluten-free, if needed)
- 1 7.75-ounce can spinach (or half of a 14-ounce can), well drained
- 4 dairy-free hamburger buns (homemade or store-bought; gluten-free, if needed)
- Sliced tomato
- Sliced red onion
- Dairy-free tzatziki sauce (this recipe with mint or this recipe with dill)
- Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium heat. Add the red onion and garlic and cook for about 5 minutes, until tender-crisp. Remove the vegetables to the bowl of a food processor.
- Add ¼ of the garbanzo beans to the food processor, along with the lemon juice and salt. Pulse to create a smooth paste. Add the remaining garbanzo beans, bread crumbs and spinach. Pulse until coarsely chopped.
- Shape the mixture into 4 4-inch patties. If desired, refrigerate until ready to cook.
- Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium heat. Add the falafel patties and cook until golden and crisp, turning once.
- Serve the falafels on buns and top with tomato, onion and dairy-free tzatziki sauce, as desired.