Gluten Free Thai Black Bean Burgers Recipe

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The first time I met the man who would become my husband was for a job interview. He owned a jewelry company and I was 17 years old looking to upgrade my job at Taco La Paz, a little Taco Bell type stand, to well … anything.

I drove to his place of business and he immediately suggested we conduct the interview over dinner. Nowadays that would probably be considered untoward or inappropriate (after all he was MUCH older than I) but trust me, it was completely innocent. Well, except for the fact that I developed an immediate crush on him and decided right then and there that we would indeed someday get married.

In any case, we went to a local pizza place he frequented and he proceeded to tell me that the meat lovers pizza was the best. I, in turn, informed him that I was a vegetarian. His eyes widened to about the size of a large pizza, his mouth formed a decided smirk, and he barely (as in, not really) concealed his disparagement. We ended up ordering a pizza that was half meat lovers and half vegetarian. This could, in fact, be a metaphor for the rest of our relationship – disparate personalities and lifestyles brought into co-existence with compromise which ends in each of us happy.

He is still a staunch carnivore and I, while no longer a vegetarian, still love a good meatless meal.

Here’s the deal – I do the cooking in my family, so if I feel like eating meatless, no problem. But I do believe that the one cooking (meaning me) should consider the eating preferences of another (meaning him) when preparing a meal. So the obvious answer is – just distract him.

This meatless burger is so tasty thanks to the Thai-inspired flavorings and toppings, that the fact that it contains no meat is a non-issue.

Aside from being gluten and meat free, this recipe is also nut free thanks to Sunbutter.


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Gluten Free Thai Black Bean Burgers Recipe

2 tablespoons rice vinegar
1 teaspoon sugar
Kosher or fine sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 seedless cucumber, peeled
1 large carrot, peeled
½ cup Sunbutter
2 tablespoons chili garlic paste, use divided
1 tablespoon gluten free soy sauce
1 tablespoon honey
Juice of 1 lime
1 ½ teaspoons ground dried ginger
2 (15-ounce) cans black beans, drained but not rinsed
1 cup gluten free bread crumbs
1 large egg
¼ cup cilantro leaves, minced
3 green onions, minced
2 garlic cloves, minced or finely grated
1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
Vegetable oil for cooking
Gluten free hamburger buns
½ romaine lettuce heart, shredded


In a small mixing bowl, combine the rice vinegar, sugar, and a pinch of salt and pepper.

Using a vegetable peeler, cut the cucumber into long, thin slices. Cut the strips into thin strips. Place in the vinegar mixture, toss to coat and let sit until ready to serve.

Cut the carrot into long thin slices with a vegetable peeler and cut into thin strips. Place in a bowl of ice water until ready to serve.

In a small mixing bowl, combine the Sunbutter, 1 tablespoon chili garlic paste, soy sauce, honey, lime juice, and ground dried ginger. Add water, as needed, a tablespoon at a time, until the sauce is creamy and spreadable. Reserve until serving time.

Place the drained beans in a mixing bowl and smash with a fork or potato masher. Add the bread crumbs, eggs, cilantro, green onions, garlic, ginger, and the remaining 1 tablespoon of chili garlic paste. Mix well and let sit for 10 minutes.

Heat some oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Divide the bean mixture into 6 equal-sized patties. Cook 5 minutes, flip, and cook for another 5 minutes.

Drain the cucumbers and carrots. Serve the burgers on buns with the sauce, pickled cucumbers, carrots, and shredded lettuce.


A gluten free, nut free recipe that serves 6.

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