Summer cookouts should be for everyone, not just meat-lovers! For all the vegetarians celebrating alongside you in the gorgeous sunshine, you need a burger that will not only feed them but satisfy their craving for great grilled food! The Summer Veggie Burger is exactly that and then some! It’s extra savory and even beefy in flavor thanks to all the mushrooms packed into each patty. Piled high with fresh veggies and creamy avocado and accented with Thousand Island dressing, Summer Veggie Burger really builds up that warm-weather joy!

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For the veggie burgers:

  • 1/2 cup olive oil, divided
  • 1 1/2 pounds baby portobello mushrooms, stemmed and quartered
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 6 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 (15.5-ounce) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 3 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 3/4 cup smoked almonds, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups brown rice or quinoa, cooked
  • 1 1/2 cups sweet potato, grated
  • 3/4 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese, finely grated
  • 1/2 cup green onion, chopped
  • 8 slices sharp cheddar, optional

For the buns:

  • Thousand Island dressing, to taste
  • 8 brioche buns, toasted

Optional toppings:

  • green leaf lettuce, sliced, to taste
  • avocado, sliced, to taste
  • red onion, thinly sliced, to taste
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Step 1 –In a large skillet, heat 3 tablespoons of the olive oil over medium heat.

Step 2 –Add the mushrooms to the hot pan and sprinkle them with the salt.

Step 3 –Cook the mushrooms, stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are tender, about 7-9 minutes.

Step 4 –Add the garlic, the cumin, the paprika, and the pepper to the mushrooms and cook, gently stirring, until the garlic is toasted, about 3 minutes.

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Step 5 –Transfer the pan from the heat and let it cool slightly.

Step 6 –In the bowl of a food processor, add the chickpeas, the soy sauce, and 1 tablespoon of the olive oil.

Step 7 –Process the chickpea mixture until smooth, about 1 minute.

Step 8 –Transfer the chickpea mixture to a large bowl and set aside.

Step 9 –Layer the mushroom mixture, the almonds, and the rice or quinoa in the food processor.

Step 10 –Pulse until the mushrooms are finely chopped and the mixture is mostly combined, about 15 times.

Step 11 –Transfer the mushroom mixture to the large bowl with the blended chickpeas.

Step 12 –Add the sweet potato, the breadcrumbs, the parmesan, and the green onion to the chickpea and mushroom mixture.

Step 13 –Using a rubber spatula, fold all the ingredients together until combined.

Step 14 –Shape the mixture into 8 equal patties, about 3/4 cup each, and place them on a baking sheet.

Step 15 –Refrigerate the patties for 1 hour.

Step 16 –Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat.

Step 17 –Add 4 burgers to the pan and cook until golden-brown on both sides, about 3 minutes per side.

Step 18 –Transfer the burgers to a tray and top with the cheese if desired.

Step 19 –Add the remaining olive oil to the skillet and repeat with the remaining burgers.

Step 20 –Spread the Thousand Island dressing on the bottom buns and layer them with the lettuce, the burger patties, the avocado, and the onion.

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Step 21 –Spread more of the dressing on the bun tops and place them on top of the burgers.

Step 22 –Serve.