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Spicy Cauliflower Burgers

75 reviews / 4.8 average

OH YES I DID. I most definitely DID make cauliflower burgers.


With cauliflower (as in the veg-e-ta-bel cauliflower) and quinoa and almonds and eggs and other non-meat stuff. I absolutely, for surely, deliciously did that. It is part veggie-burger, part rule-breaker. We are just straight up defying traditional food categories over here.

Guess what? Even regular-burger-loving Bjork loved these little babes.

Here’s what’s about to go down:

  • a golden brown, cheesy, spicy cauliflower+quinoa burger
  • a layer of Magic Green Sauce (🙏)
  • a layer of cilantro lime slaw bcz crunchy is necessary
  • a layer of creamy chipotle mayo compliments of Christmas gifting – one thing, though: do normal people get things like chipotle mayo for Christmas?
  • a jalapeño cheddar bun, because who can even walk by those in the grocery store without buying them?! be real with yourself.
  • A VERY HAPPY EATER

These burgers are literally everything. Is that the right use of literally? Cool and fresh because of that avocado-based sauce and all the lime and cilantro in the slaw, but also a little fiery because those cauliflower burgers are packin’ the heat, just the right amount of crunchy thanks to the purple slaw, and a little smooth+creamy because of the smooth chipotle mayo on top.

HOW TO MAKE OUR CAULIFLOWER BURGERS (50 SEC):

Recipe for Spicy Cauliflower Burgers with avocado sauce, cilantro lime slaw, and chipotle mayo! Meatless, filling, and delicious! | pinchofyum.com
Recipe for Spicy Cauliflower Burgers with avocado sauce, cilantro lime slaw, and chipotle mayo! Meatless, filling, and delicious! | pinchofyum.com
Recipe for Spicy Cauliflower Burgers with avocado sauce, cilantro lime slaw, and chipotle mayo! Meatless, filling, and delicious! | pinchofyum.com

As with almost all meatless burgers that I’ve encountered, these want to crumble a bit. See also: fails.

But after several rounds with the recipe, I discovered that with enough eggs and enough, umm, cheese (so maybe I just used cheese as a key binding ingredient – can we move on already?), they hold together beautifully.

Not only do they hold together, but they get a lusciously golden brown exterior that is screaming to be smeared with sauces and toppings and packed into a jalapeño cheddar bun.

Amiright tho?

Recipe for Spicy Cauliflower Burgers with avocado sauce, cilantro lime slaw, and chipotle mayo! Meatless, filling, and delicious! | pinchofyum.com
Recipe for Spicy Cauliflower Burgers with avocado sauce, cilantro lime slaw, and chipotle mayo! Meatless, filling, and delicious! | pinchofyum.com

Here’s the deal: Over the last year or so, I’ve realized that I don’t really like to make healthy trades when it comes to cooking. Like, if you’re going to have a burger, just eat a regular burger. **With the exception of a few things, like cauliflower sauce instead of cream-based sauce. But in general, that’s mostly how I feel about it.

But friends, I truly, honestly, deeply and very seriously LOVE a good meatless burger. I might even love a made-from-scratch veggie burger MORE than a traditional burger. The texture? The flavor? It is so much more interesting and satisfying tha–  okay, I’m getting glares. I’ll stop.

So around here we love veggie burgers, we also love cauliflower, and we mostly love quinoa except when it tastes a little dirty, but we forgive these things for the versatility and health factors, no? So this cauliflower burgers recipe is not so much a “healthy swap” for a burger and more of something that our type of food peeps truly love to eat.

It’s cauli-burger go-time!

CHIPOTLE MAYO SITUATION:

Guys, the chipotle mayo is an important deliciousness factor – don’t skip it.

The brand we got for Christmas (which is linked here) is called Sir Kensington’s and I LOVE IT. It uses good, normal ingredients like cage-free eggs and tomato paste and chipotle powder, and it has a spot-on balance of creamy and spicy.

Chipotle Mayo: http://amzn.to/2f5QfPJ

See also: chipotle mayo on oven roasted vegetables. Potatoes, cauliflower, broccoli, carrots, you name it. It’s our winter obsession.

More Cauliflower Yum

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Spicy Cauliflower Burger held by hand.

Spicy Cauliflower Burgers


  • Author: Pinch of Yum
  • Prep Time: 30 mins
  • Cook Time: 30 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 10 burgers 1x

Description

Recipe for Spicy Cauliflower Burgers with avocado sauce, cilantro lime slaw, and chipotle mayo! Meatless, filling, and delicious!


Ingredients

Scale

For the Cauliflower Burgers

  • 3/4 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 1 head cauliflower (about 6 cups florets)
  • 34 tablespoons oil, divided
  • a few generous shakes of spicy seasoning – cumin, chili powder, cayenne, etc.
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic salt OR just a minced garlic clove or two
  • 3/4 cup breadcrumbs or ground almonds
  • 3/4 cup shredded Pepperjack cheese
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon salt

Burger Toppings

  • a few good squeezes of lime juice
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1/2 cup chopped purple cabbage
  • magic green sauce
  • chipotle mayo
  • buns (may I recommend jalapeño cheddar?)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Cook the quinoa according to package directions but only using 1 cup broth of water to keep it from getting too heavy.
  2. Cut the cauliflower into florets, transfer to a baking sheet, drizzle with 1 tablespoon oil and sprinkle with spices to taste. Roast for 20-30 minutes. Let cool. Pulse through a food processor to form small pieces that stick together (see picture). We don’t want PUREE here, but we do want enough mushiness to help it all stick together.
  3. Combine the cooked, pulsed cauliflower with the quinoa, garlic salt, breadcrumbs, Pepperjack cheese, eggs, salt, and another teaspoon or two of spicy seasoning (cayenne will make it hot-spicy, so just add a few shakes of that one). Form 10 patties.
  4. In an oiled or nonstick pan over medium heat, cook the burgers until golden brown on each side, flipping very carefully to avoid breaking. Set aside on a paper towel lined plate.
  5. Toss the lime juice, cilantro, cabbage, and a quick stream of oil together. Season with salt.
  6. Arrange the burgers with: magic green sauce, the cauliflower burger, the slaw, and the chipotle mayo on top.

Equipment

Notes

In terms of level of spiciness, that is totally up to you! and it happens mostly at step two when you’re mixing up the burger mixture. Don’t be shy to add more spices or adjust – especially after you fry and taste one of them. Mine turned out a little bit differently every time I made them depending on what spices I used more or less of. For a gluten free version, be sure to use the almond meal instead of the breadcrumbs. It won’t hold together quite as nicely, but it’s still delicious. We added a few cloves of roasted garlic to one of the versions – highly recommend. It was delicious. We just roasted the cloves at the same time as the cauliflower, but wrapped in foil and drizzled with oil. Cooked burgers can be kept in the fridge for 2 days but they freeze really nicely, too. Nutrition information is for 1 burger out of a total of 10 burgers, not including bun, topping, etc.

  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: cauliflower burgers, cauliflower recipe, vegetarian burger, vegetarian recipe

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Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links.


One More Thing!

This recipe is part of our magical cauliflower recipes page. Check it out!

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322 Comments

    1. Pinch of Yum Logo
      Paula

      Omg stop with the twenty million pictures already. One does the job. We just want the recipe but we have to scroll down forever to reach it. Stop

      1. Pinch of Yum Logo
        Keith

        Geez, simmer down. There is a link at the top of every page to skip to the recipe.






  1. Pinch of Yum Logo

    I looove veggie burgers. They are so umm light and you don’t feel like you’ve eaten a truckload. I usually bind them with powdered oats, but cheese WINS over Oats anyday!

  2. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Do spicy cauliflower burgers count as a breakfast food? I am wanting these ASAP and it is only 8:30am! Love the creative use of cauliflower and, as always, the photos turned out beautifully!

  3. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Oh My!!! Chipotle AND meatless burger?! My food-loving self is TAKEN. <3 I have been looking forward to this since the 'fail' post 😀 so glad you didn't make us wait long!

    I am so with you on the healthy subs. But you are right! Veggie/cauli burgers are just their own category. Calm down, people…we are just bringing more options to the food table 😉

    Loving the new addition of affiliate links to ingredients 🙂 good thinkin'!






  4. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Dear Lord, Lady!!! I never thought that I would swoon over a veggie burger (????). But that just happened! I was seriously going to buck the new year healthy thing, but I’m reconsidering my position! Gor-jussss!

  5. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Oh, now you have one extremely happy veggie burger eater over here 🙂 I love regular burgers, but I LOVE veggie burgers (notice the difference? :)) and this is the recipe I’ve been dreaming about, and it has just landed on top of my “must make” list!






  6. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Kacy

    You are too funny! And what’s this? Well, what-do-you-know? I have a head of cauliflower AND a jar of Sir Kensington chipotle mayo in my fridge right now. The four-year-olds are going to hate these! I hope. More for me 🙂

      1. Pinch of Yum Logo
        Danielle

        These look so good! I’m always looking for more vegetarian options for family dinners! I was just wondering what your opinion was on using frozen riced cauliflower?

        1. Pinch of Yum Logo

          Good question, Danielle! We haven’t tried using frozen cauliflower rice here, but we don’t think we’d suggest it. We’re thinking the water content could affect the burgers staying together. Fresh cauliflower rice could work though!

  7. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Bekah

    Soooo, I don’t exactly like cauliflower but dang girl – I’m not sure how I can NOT at least try this. Your pics and recipes are always so gorgeous.

    Question though….
    Where did you buy those buns? They look way better than thou regular bun from Walmart or Aldi. 😉

    Thanks for reading my comment.

      1. Pinch of Yum Logo
        sushil

        Hello,

        First of alll thank you so much for the awesome recipe..this is just fabulous n yummiest burger i ever tasted. i am predominantly meat eater but veggie burgers and that tooo sooo yum is just out of my imagination.

        i have a question for you – i made thr burger twice but the pattie becomes soft .. and it crumbles when u eat the burger… is there a way you can make it stuffer do you can feel the pattie as meaty in your mouth.

        Thanks,
        Sushil






        1. Pinch of Yum Logo

          Hi, Sushil! We’re wondering if you just need a bit more breadcrumbs in your burgers or to cook them for a bit longer so that they hold together better. Let us know how both of these options go for you. 😊

  8. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Lodi

    I searched but didn’t find a black bean burger. Did you ever do one? (My husband loves them!)

    The Korean bowl looks lovely – is it based on “Bool Koogie”? Gotta try it!

    Love your blog!

  9. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Arielle | Scotch and Nonsense

    Yes! I’ve been making an effort to eat mostly vegetarian these days. Salads are easy enough to find, but I’m thrilled to have some recipes to replace my carnivore comfort food!

  10. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Dee

    Can’t wait to try this! Do you have any suggestions for ingredients to replace the egg with?

      1. Pinch of Yum Logo
        Kinga

        how about substituting pepperjack for another kind of cheese? Where I live it’s not very common so what else would work?

  11. Pinch of Yum Logo

    I get how you feel! I normally don’t see the point of subbing weird veggie concoctions for meat dishes. Cauliflower “steak” for a regular steak? Ah, no, thank you. But I also LOVE a good homemade veggie burger. These look totally yum! Pinning for dinner next week!

  12. Pinch of Yum Logo

    That’s how my husband is…if he wants a dessert, he will have a regular dessert. I also tried eating healthier sweets and was just miserable, so if I want to eat a cookie or cheesecake, I’m having the real thing! Such a good decision (in moderation) 🙂

  13. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Oh emmm geeeee. I’ve been looking for a veggie burger recipes with no beans and I cannot wait to try this!!

  14. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Rosie

    How do I make these vegan?! These look so delicious and yummy…. *drools*

    Would you suggest I use flax eggs instead of the eggs? And would I need to replace the cheese with something due to the volume? Oooo perhaps I could coat them with your amazing cashew parmesan…..

    Anyway, and suggestions would be amazing! Thanks!

    1. Pinch of Yum Logo

      Hi, Rosie! You could certainly try using flax eggs instead of eggs. The cashew sauce might also make a good binder! Basically you need to add in enough sticky/wet ingredients to make the burgers hold together. 🙂

      1. Pinch of Yum Logo
        Colleen

        Any thoughts on how much of the cashew sauce to add in place of the cheese so that they’d bind together??

        1. Pinch of Yum Logo
          Colleen

          I ended up replacing all of the cheese with the same amount of the cashew sauce and it worked beautifully and tasted delicious! I did add an extra egg as well but it may have not been needed. Thanks for a great recipe!