Quinoa Burger with Basil Cream Sauce: Your New Go-To Healthy Dinner

This hearty vegan burger is under 200 calories each.

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Beef burgers, fish cakes, tuna croquettes, black bean burgers, turkey burgers, zucchini fritters—what is it about pressing foods into patty form that makes everything better? If you’re not careful, though, a big chunk of burger can get mega caloric in a jiffy. Even store-bought veggie burgers can be a not-so-nutritious option if it’s just a slab of processed soy.

This meatless burger by wellness chef Charles Chen solves all those problems. Chen is a chef, entrepreneur, and vivacious host of the online cooking show Kitchen Hustle, where “hustlers learn how to fuel their passions.” Throughout his childhood, Chen struggled with his health. As a teenager, he was prediabetic and a self-proclaimed couch potato who had no energy or motivation to make healthier choices. After hitting what he calls his “rock bottom moment,” he reclaimed his health, lost more than 100 pounds, and now helps others fuel their “bodies, mind, and spirit starting in the kitchen.”

This quinoa burger ain’t your typical cardboard-like veggie patty you find in the grocery store freezer section. It’s made with that famous superfood, quinoa, so it’s packed with healthy protein, and it includes flavorful, fiber-loaded veggies like sweet potato and kale. Um, it’s basically salad, right? Just in hearty burger form.

And you don’t skip on the condiments either. Chen recommends pairing this killer quinoa burger with a luscious basil avocado cream sauce. It’s rich, creamy, and flavorful—without any dairy. Swapping out the cream with avocado and coconut milk means you’re getting that luxurious creamy texture without the cholesterol. In other words, your tastebuds will think it’s indulgent, even though it’s healthy for your bod.

  • 1 and 1/2 cups cooked quinoa
  • 2 tbsp ground flax
  • 6 tbsp water
  • 1 cup kale, destemmed and finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup quinoa flour
  • 1/2 cup cubed butternut squash or sweet potato
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
  • 2 tbsp finely diced onion
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp runny tahini paste
  • 1 and 1/2 tsp herb de provence mix
  • 1 and 1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp fine grain sea salt, or to taste
  • pinch each of cayenne pepper, ground ginger, and cumin (to taste)
  • 1/2 an avocado
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk
  • 3/4 cup fresh basil
  • 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp white miso
  • pinch each of sea salt and cayenne pepper
•Preheat oven to 400ºF. •Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. •Mix the ground flax and water in a small bowl and set aside for about 5 minutes to thicken. •Combine all ingredients together in a large bowl, including the flax mixture and the cooked quinoa. Stir well until the mixture comes together. (Don't forget the flour because it helps bind the patties) •Shape mixture into 1/4-cup patties with wet hands. Pack tightly so they hold together better. Place on baking sheet. •Bake for 15 minutes, then carefully flip cakes, and bake for another 8-10 minutes until golden and firm. •Cool for 5 minutes on the sheet and then enjoy!

Nutrition Information

Recipe Serves: 4
Nutrition Information Based on a Single Serving
Calories 50925%
Fat 22gr33%
Cholesterol 0mg0%
Sodium 135mg5%
Carbohydrates 60gr46%
Fiber 10gr40%
Sugar 3gr6%
Protein 17gr33%

*Percent Daily Value are based on a 2000 calorie diet. Your daily value may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Dietary Needs

Dairy Free
Dairy Free
Gluten Free
Gluten Free
Lower Sodium
Lower Sodium
Lower Sugar
Lower Sugar