Where do I even begin?
These burgers have so much going on.
Hence the longest name I have ever posted and will hopefully ever post….hopefully! I am going to get so much flack for that title, but I don’t even care. These burgers are one hundred percent worth it and really it is not like there is a food blogging rule that does not allow long titles. Some people find them obnoxious, but some people probably say the same thing about me, so I guess it kind of fits.
Oh and if you can believe it, I actually left something out. Yeah, there is another component to the burger, but I saved that part for a few more pics down or if you are like me and NEED to know just scroll down and skip over all my yapping. It’s a good surprise. Well, in my opinion at least.
Alright, let’s just start with the main idea for these quinoa burgers.
I wanted to create a quinoa burger that would actually rival the typical beef burger. One good enough for Sunday night, Monday night and Thursday night football. One good enough to please even the meatiest of the meatiest die-hard burger fans.
I know you are thinking it’s just not possible, and trust me, I totally thought the same thing. I was one hundred and twenty-five percent positive my picky bean hating family would think these was just sub par. I love beans of any kind, but my family pretty much just hates them. Sometimes I can sneak in black beans, but everyone just ends up picking around them. So I mean white beans? Yeah, I was a little afraid, but I had some hope since I based the patty recipe off of these crispy buffalo quinoa bites salad that they loved.
So I started with that base, but swapped the regular quinoa with red quinoa, took out the buffalo sauce and added some seasonings and cheese. Quick, easy and simple.
From here my idea of an epic burger just grew and grew.
Oh and if you are wondering, the Epic Burger is actually a thing up here in my very snowy and cold mountain town. It is a Vail Resorts burger and it is called an Epic Burger because it is HUGE. My dad calls it an epic burger because he says it has an epic price tag. $12.95 for a cafeteria burger!
My brothers wait all year for that burger.
It’s a Christmas Day only Burger.
Oh and yes, they snowboard on both Thanksgiving and Christmas day. Apparently those are some of the best days to ride since people are, oh you know, celebrating with their families.
Anyway, once I knew what patty I wanted to make my idea just grew and grew. I kind of wanted to go with the french onion burger, complete with caramelized onions and Gruyere cheese, but I wanted to tie fall and football into the burger so I went with beer caramelized onions. I used a pumpkin beer and oh my gosh you guys, wow they are hands down the best caramelized onions. And we do not even love onions over here!
Then I thought sweet potatoes. Fall staple food in the form of tiny crispy sweet potato fries. So there was the idea. Here is the burger and geez, it’s pretty epic.
But then, just as I was about to take my big bite, well then this happened.
The fried egg.
Could I be more predictable? Probably not, but my taste buds sure liked it!
It is totally optional, but I highly recommend it if you are an egg eater!
Guys, I cannot say enough how amazing this burger is. It fooled everyone. My dad actually said he would choose this burger over a beef burger any day. ANY DAY, guys! Even my mom agreed. I am telling you, it is so good. And while caramelizing the onions takes a little time and slicing those sweet potatoes into fries is not all that fun, the burgers come together in just about an hour and you can make extra patties and freeze them for a quick lunch or future dinners. Even just the patties alone are crazy good!
Also, if you’re a big caramelized onion fan I recommend making a huge batch of these on Sunday to have throughout the week to add to salads, pizza, sandwiches, whatever. They are just so good!
Oh, and obviously the sweet potato fries need no explanation. They are crispy, a little spicy, a little sweet and so good!
Isn’t it such a cute burger?
Alright, let’s try this again…
Epic Crispy Quinoa Burgers Topped with Sweet Potato Fries, Beer Caramelized Onions + Gruyere
- 2 cups cooked red quinoa
- 1 cup cannellini beans mashed
- 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
- 1 large egg lightly beaten
- 1 clove garlic grated
- 1 teaspoon chipotle chile powder
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt and pepper
- 3/4 cup sharp cheddar cheese shredded
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 of your favorite burger buns
- 4 eggs cooked to your liking optional (but recommended)!
Sweet Potato Fries
- 4 inch medium sweet potatoes cut into thin 1/2- thick strips
- 1/2 teaspoon chipotle chile powder
- 1/4-1/2 cayenne pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
- salt and pepper to taste
- 4 tablespoon olive oil
Beer caramelized onions
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 2 large sweet onions thinly sliced
- 1 cup beer I used pumpkin beer
In a bowl combine the quinoa, mashed cannellini beans, bread crumbs, egg, garlic, chipotle chile powder, salt and pepper. Mix well to moisten the ingredients and then mix in the shredded cheddar cheese. Mix well again and form into 4 or 5 equal burger patties (I made 5). Place on a plate and put in the fridge.
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
Place cut potatoes in a large bowl and drizzle with oil, chipotle chile powder, cayenne, smoked paprika, salt and pepper. Gently toss with your hands or two spatulas to evenly coat. Spread on a baking sheet in one layer. Bake for 15-20 minutes, then flip and bake for 15-20 minutes more. You want the sweet potatoes to be crispy, but not burnt. If you want perfectly crisp fries I recommend spreading the sweet potatoes on a greased wire rack and baking them as directed above. But this way is a bit of a pain. Keep the sweet potato fries warm until ready to top on the burgers.
While the fries cook caramelize the onions. Heat large skillet. Add 1 tablespoon butter over medium-high heat. Add onions and cook about 15 minutes, stirring frequently, until softened.
At this point you want to slowly add the beer, let it cook into the onions, add more and let it cook. Do this until the 1 cup of beer is gone or the onions are caramelized to your liking and the beer has evaporated. Remove from the skillet and keep warm.
In the same skillet add 1 tablespoon olive oil. Grab the quinoa burgers and cook until golden and crisp, about five minutes per side. During the last minute or so of cooking add the Gruyere cheese, cover the pan and cook 2-3 minutes or until the cheese has melted. My burgers were not crumbly at all and very easy to flip.
To assemble the burgers, place each burger on a bun, top with equal amounts of caramelized onions and sweet potato fries. If desired add you egg. EAT!
Just can’t even handle it. Look at that thing.