Black Bean Burgers & Chocolate Blueberry Cake

Yesterday I made two new recipes, and both were a success! The veggie burgers held together nicely on top a slice of Sami’s Millet and Flax bread.  They were complimented by baked sweet potatoes and a side salad.  Dessert was a Chocolate-Blueberry Cake drizzled with sweet agave nectar.

The recipe (and the below picture) is from Conrad’s Vision Quest.

Black Bean Burgers

* 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
* 1/3 c. red onion, minced
* 1/2 cup mushrooms, chopped (I used a portabella mushroom)
* 1/2 cup oats, coarsely ground
* 1/2 t. salt
* 2 t. cumin
* 1 T. vegan Worcestershire sauce
* 1 1/2 t. minced garlic

Mash the beans in a bowl with a fork until they make a chunky paste. Stir in remaining ingredients. Form into 4 patties and fry in a lightly greased skillet (I used EVOO) and cook over medium heat for 7 minutes per side.   When finished cooking put on some whole wheat buns with your favorite toppings. We like like spinach, tomatoes, carrots, and vegan Worcestershire sauce.

Recipe Verdict: This recipe creates well crafted, held together veggie burgers.  I don’t think they could stand up to a grill, but they do hold their on being cooked in a skillet.  As for taste, the cumin is a bit overpowering (that is coming from a cumin-lover), but my husband who DESPISES cumin, didn’t comment.  So maybe it wasn’t that strong.   I think I’ll play around with the spices next go around.  And yes, there will be many more rounds.  I  doubled this recipe so I have plenty of burgers for leftovers!

Here is the black bean burger as we had it for dinner  served open-faced on a piece of Sami’s bread (I promise it is under there):

Here is the black bean burger as leftovers on a Sami’s millet and flax lavish with hummus, spinach, carrots, avocado, and of course topped with Cayenne.

For dessert, I decided to make a Chocolate Blueberry Cake that I found from the amazing blog FatFree Vegan Kitchen.  SusanV crafts up some amazing recipes, and her pictures are so tempting.  I’m normally not a baker (read ramblings about that here), but this recipe looked so easy and incredibly delicious, I decided to give it a try.  While at the health food store I picked up the ingredients I lacked (flour, baking soda, and baking powder) and got right home to give this recipe a go.  It was SO easy to make.  I couldn’t believe it.

Chocolate-Blueberry Cake

(printer-friendly version)

1 1/4 cup whole wheat flour (white whole wheat preferred)
6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground chia seeds or flax seeds (I used chia seeds)
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup water
1/2 cup blueberries
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup date syrup, maple syrup, or other liquid sweetener ( I used Vermont Maple Syrup)
1 cup blueberries (for serving)
additional syrup or agave nectar to taste ( I used agave nectar)

Preheat oven to 350 F. In a medium bowl, mix flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, chia (or flax) and salt. In blender, combine water, 1/2 cup blueberries, and balsamic vinegar and blend until smooth.

Make a well in the dry ingredients.  Add the syrup and the blueberry mixture. Stir until completely mixed.  Pour into an oiled 9-inch round cake pan.

Bake 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool completely before inverting onto serving platter.

Serve with blueberries on top, drizzled with additional syrup or agave.  (I recommend agave for drizzling.)

Servings: 8

Nutrition Facts
Nutrition (per serving): 144 calories, 10 calories from fat, 1.2g total fat, 0mg cholesterol, 217.1mg sodium, 204mg potassium, 33.6g carbohydrates, 4.4g fiber, 14.9g sugar, 3.6g protein, 2.2 points.

Recipe Verdict: This cake is not very sweet when it cooks through.  As it stands without any blueberries or agave drizzled on it, it is not very moist and reminds me of a processed diet cake.  With the blueberries and the agave, though, it is okay.  My husband took a few bites and said, “this is great” as he proceeded to get up and get seconds.  I had seconds too (!).  There is not a strong blueberry taste to the cake.  Also, I think a cashew whipped cream would compliment this cake very well.  Here is a recipe from The Sunny Raw Kitchen for a raw, vegan whipped cream.

Whipped Cream (from The Sunny Raw Kitchen Blog)
Adapted from a recipe by Café Gratitude

1 cup cashews
1 cup + 2 tablespoons coconut milk*
3 tablespoons raw honey or agave nectar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
Pinch sea salt
1/2 cup melted coconut oil
1 tablespoon lecithin powder

Did you do any cooking this weekend?  How did your new recipes turn out? Did you do anything fun over the weekend?

My husband and I did the Clearwater Community Sailing Center’s 1-mile Open Water Swim #3.  Race report soon!  We also visited some friends in Hernando County and went to Pine Island.  On Sunday we did yard work, cooked, cleaned, and relaxed.  Actually, there wasn’t much relaxing going on, but that was our intent!

Here are some pictures of our backyard project.  My husband and I decided to transform our backyard into a tropical oasis.  It is a work in progress as you can see (no grass – we dug it out a few weeks ago and after all this rain it is practically back – and no mulch under the trees, etc), but when it is all done, it will be very nice.  Enjoy the pictures!

Also on one of our many trips to Home Depot I picked up bromeliads on clearance for $3 each.  They go perfect in the bright orange pots I got on sale last week at Ross for $2 each.  I love the bright colors in our kitchen.



Filed under Desserts, Main Course

3 responses to “Black Bean Burgers & Chocolate Blueberry Cake

  1. Great blog! I found it from a post you made on’s Facebook page. I’ve enjoyed perusing it.

    I’m not vegan (or even vegetarian), but a great % of our meals are (*love* vegan food).

    I like your running philosophy. Last year I decided to devote some time to running. I trained for and ran: 2 half marathons, 1 10-miler, and an 8.3 mile leg of a marathon (my friend and I split it). I *loved* it, and it got me into great cardiovascular shape, but I felt like it consumed my life AND it gave me mild sciatica. (need to get some physical therapy). So now I am keeping my runs to under 6 miles.

    This summer I decided it was time to learn to swim…or at least REALLY get comfortable in the water, so I am training for a sprint tri. I’ve never been a good swimmer, but I’ve now been in the ocean 3 times. I really like it when I can do a little bit of everything…swim, bike, run, lift.

    And those burgers look delicious!

    • Hi there, thanks for taking a look at my blog. Yes, it is nice not to have a big race date looming over my head and have to hit the pavement for miles. Not to mention, I don’t have to deal with injuries (I suffered badly from pf). Now I can enjoy a wide range of sports – swimming, running, spinning, tris, etc.

      Good luck on your sprint tri. I am doing my second triathlon this weekend – July 31st – Top Gun at Fort DeSoto in Florida. When and where is your race?


  2. My race is August 26…Santa Barbara, CA. I will definitely be wearing a wetsuit. Water temps peak out at about 65F.

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