less than 30 mins
10 to 30 mins
Makes 4 burgers, or 12 falafel-sized balls
Shop-bought veggie burgers are often deep-fried and quite expensive. You can make your own versions at home which can be frozen and then oven-cooked from frozen as needed. They can all be served with dips or as a filling for pittas, flatbreads or wraps. It is good to add a vegetable of some kind- mashed squash, carrot or sweet potato work really well- you can mash these from boiled or roasted vegetables.
Adult’s job: Preheat the oven to 200C/180C Fan/Gas 6.
Kid’s job: Mash the beans or chickpeas as much as you can either with a potato masher in a bowl or with a hand mixer (supervised). Alternatively you could make the mix in a food processor if you have one.
Kid’s job: Add the mashed vegetables and garlic and any herbs, spices or tahini that you want to use.
Kid’s job: Mix well and the kids can taste and add lemon juice, spices or pepper to their taste.
Kid’s job: The mixture then needs to be rolled into four burger-sized balls with wet hands, or make 12 smaller "falafels" - kids have the perfect sized hands for this. Flatten the balls slightly. If you like, you can coat them with sesame seeds, crushed crackers or breadcrumbs for extra crunch.
Kid’s job: Drizzle a tablespoon of olive oil on a baking tray and place the "falafels" or bean burgers on top and then turn them all over so that they have a coating of a little oil on each side.
Adult’s job: Place the baking tray in the oven and cook for 20-30 minutes, turning the burgers over midway through cooking. Allow to cool a little before serving.
You can freeze the burgers uncooked and then bake them from frozen. This will take about 45 minutes for baking at 200C/180C Fan/Gas 6.
Variations to try: carrots or sweet potato with chickpeas, cumin and sesame seeds; carrot with butterbeans and chopped parsley; squash with kidney beans, chopped coriander and ground cumin; parsnips and borlotti beans with chives and paprika.
By Justine Pattison