Beetburgers, 18p [VG/V/DF/GF]



I love the general enthusiasm that Veganuary generates across my social media (an annual challenge to try vegan for January), and this year with 40,000 people signing up and support from Stella McCartney and other fabulous animal lovers, the buzz created has been gorgeously warm and supportive. I am busy finishing my book at the moment – and thank you all for your patience as my health has taken a serious tumble this year, I promise it will be worth it when it is in your hands – but can’t help but pad it out with extra recipes, like tonights beetburgers. Not to be confused with the Beetballs from last year, these pack a serious protein punch, and are simple to make. I always wear a rubber glove to handle beetroots, to prevent Lady Macbeth hands, but also as I run my hands through my hair in exasperation five hundred times a day, it stops me accidentally dyeing chunks of it pink in the process…

This recipe makes 8 decent sized burgers (we scoffed two before I took a pic), and as ever, prices are based on Sainsburys, Basics range where available. Other supermarkets offer similar products at comparable prices – and if you find a real bargain, let us all know in the comments below!

2 beetroots, 60p (£1.50/500g)

1 large onion of any colour  (mine was 130g), 8p (90p/1.5kg)

2 tbsp oil, 3p (£3/3l)

2 x 400g tins of kidney beans, 60p (30p/400g)

1 tsp cumin, 2p (80p/100g from the World Foods aisle or similar – look for KTC or Natco brands)

1/2 tsp turmeric (not essential, if you don’t have it in don’t buy it especially – I just sling it in everything as it is supposed to be excellent for inflammation and my sodding arthritis needs all the help it can get – please note I am not recommending this as medical advice and my Doctorate is merely honorary!!), 1p (80p/100g, see above)

1/2 tsp paprika, 2p (80p/100g, same as above)

a pinch of salt, <1p (Basics table salt, 25p/750g)

a dash of vinegar, <1p (50p/568ml – annoyingly I can’t find the Basics vinegar any more so although I am still using my bottle of it, it seems unfair to list it here as I want to use ingredients everyone can get hold of, rather than ingredients from the past! Grr! So this is the own brand one… Humph.)

3 tbsp flour, <1p (55p/1.5kg) – to make gluten free, use your preferred gf flour

2 tbsp oil to cook them in, 3p (£3/3l)


First grate your beetroot and pop it in a big wide frying pan. Peel and finely chop the onion and toss that in too. Add 1 tbsp oil and cook on a gentle heat for around 10 minutes to soften, stirring constantly to disturb it all so it doesn’t stick and burn.

Add the spices, season with salt and a dash of vinegar (any vinegar will do, I use boring old malt but fancypants stuff will just make it even better if you keep it kicking about) and stir well to combine. Remove from the heat for a moment.

Drain and thoroughly rise the kidney beans, tip into the pan, and return to the heat. Mash well, keeping everything moving, until it comes together in a rough paste. Remove from the heat and stir in the flour until relatively stiff. If you pick up a dollop on your spoon and hold it upside down, it should hold fast.

Grab a baking tray and very lightly grease it. Pick up a heaped spoon of the mixture and pat it into a patty with floured hands. Place it on the baking tray, and repeat until all of the mixture is used up. Err on the side of thinner burgers, as they cook faster, and you can always layer them up for a bigger bite! Pop the tray in the freezer for 10 minutes or the fridge for half an hour, uncovered, to firm up. This step is important, as otherwise you could end up with a pan of hot moosh. I mean, it’ll be super tasty hot moosh, it just won’t be a burger, so it depends on where your priorities are!

I use these 10 minutes to clear down the surfaces and quickly wash up…hahahaha who am I kidding, I fanny around on Twitter and act surprised when the washing up doesn’t do itself!

Wipe your pan down at least, because you’ll need it again in a moment, but it has the same stuff going back into it so it doesn’t need to be spotless.

When the patties have lounged around a while and are nice and firm to (gently) touch, heat a little oil in the pan. Add a few, being careful not to overcrowd the pan as it makes them tricky to turn over, and cook for 5 minutes on a medium heat on each side. Remove from the pan and repeat as required.

They freeze well, cooked or uncooked, or can be kept in the fridge for up to three days. I had one tonight in a burger bun and have destined another to be broken into chunks with salad and (vegan) mayo in a flatbread tomorrow…

Enjoy! And remember to tag me in them if you make them – I love seeing all of your cooking! 😛

Jack Monroe xx

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  1. Jack, you might want to rinse (as opposed to rise) the kidney beans. Personally I am poor at levitation of even small things!

  2. Hello, Jack. I am sorry to hear of your health problems. Glad to see that you are back to posting. Last fall, I bought your book ” A Girl Called Jack” and l love it. I look forward to your next book. Take care of yourself. Peace and Blessings! 🙂

  3. Hi Jack, I see in the photo you have ‘greenery’ in the burgers, looks like coriander, but not mentioned in the list of ingredients, how much did you add and a what point? Ta.

    • It’s just vegan mayo mixed with a little wasabi paste, but mustard and a dash of lemon would work as cheap substitutes! I’m working on vegan mayo myself at the moment – if I crack it I’ll let you know 🙊

      • Dear Jack

        Please see the recipe above – I have made delicious wasabi mayonnaise by omitting the mustard and adding prepared wasabi to taste.

        Only downfall of the recipe is that it requires a hand blender – nutribullet and food processor don’t work to emulsify (I’ve tried!)

        Best aquafaba I find is from chickpeas – and it’s ostensibly free as you would normally pour it out when draining chickpeas.

        I think Aldi do the cheapest canned chickpeas at 33p.

        I have made very low fat vegan mayonnaise using silken tofu but I appreciate it may not be suitable for this blog.

        For anyone wondering what to do with the chickpeas, I normally rinse and dry them then toss them with smoked paprika, cumin cayenne pepper, turmeric and salt and pepper and bake for 20 min at 180c. Leave them to cool and harden and they make an amazing addition to salads, soups, lunch boxes etc.

        Best wishes


  4. Do you think this could work with any other beans? Kidney beans always give me such a belly ache

  5. These look great. Will give them a go. I’m also looking forward to seeing the new book in due course. I do hope your health is improving and that 2017 is a good year for you. x

  6. The pink colour probably goes well with the kidney beans but, to avoid that magenta juice staining everything, using yellow beetroots would presumably result in as good a flavour but less mess – or not? I’ve only ever used beetroot once (in brownies, where the colour is probably essential) but the mess rather put me off trying again, at least with the red ones. What do you think?

  7. I have never ever cooked with beetroot so am a full on newbie! Hopefully I won’t screw this up royally!

  8. Just Thank You Jack,for brilliant recipes,that are ,beginning to allow Me to enjoy cooking rather than being always on the verge of stress meltdown.Have never really bothered for Me,but am now supporting someone who I need to cook for,has great taste,but struggles with chewing.Your Chick Pea and Peach curry,and bean goulash have gone down a treat.My New Years resolution is to keep cooking,not just for others but for Me,and So I am off to find and buy Your Book,as well as keep receiving Your brilliant blogs.Look out Kitchen here I come.xxxxx

  9. Making them tonight! BTW your scone recipe earlier this week was fabulous – baked them in the end as I had the oven on anyway. Delicious!

  10. Hope you’re feeling better Jack! Look forward to trying these. On the subject of “basics” vinegar you might want to try Lidl (if you have one near you) as their 568ml bottle is (as far as I know it still is..bought mine a while back) just 21p!!!!

  11. Just made your tarka daal from the other day. Delish. So will try these as well. One thing we can grow is beetroot.

  12. Good to hear from you again, J, come 2017! Caught up, belatedly through back numbers of the Radio Times, of an interesting profile of yourself, pending a radio serial (April 2016). Am looking at food as part of culture here in South Wales (at Merthyr Tydfil to be precise) through history, which then begats all sorts of other items through such history such as language, ethnicity, post-Brexit (Merthyr Tydfil voted to leave, incredibly!); and the essay in the making of some 15,000 words could be coming your way for comment if you are not careful….. Stay safe:



  13. Jack, do you reckon these would work with gram flour instead of the plain flour? I have these beauties in mind for the dinner of a coeliac, and would need to adapt accordingly

    • I use gram flour to make beetroot falafel as that’s what the recipe calls for. Has more of the texture of onion bhajis inside but my son prefers it. More protein too.

  14. The beet burgers sound great but if Stella McCartney is such a big animal lover you’d think she could use her influence to get the palm oil out of the Linda McCartney veggie range….

  15. I have just made these and they were delicious! Thank you for the recipe 😋
    I tried to post a picture but couldn’t.

  16. Hi, could you add a weight for the beetroot please? I’m guessing you use medium to large beet rather than tiddlers but a rough idea of weight would be helpful. Thanks!

  17. Hi Jack, I fell for the title and the picture and went ahead and bought most of the ingredients, and then given that I grate beetroots into mixed leaf salads or boil them for soups & other, I went on autopilot and boiled the beets! So-I had to improvise: I put the boiled beets, together with cooked lentils, half a can of kidney beans and a can of chickpeas seeing that I live in the chickpea belt, together with the onions, spices and some flour in the blender and then made patties out of that mix. I have to fine-tune the presentation but wowsers they taste good! Will take a pic of the ones I plan to whip up tomorrow with the remaining mix. Be well!

  18. These are absolutely delicious! Made them the other night for dinner, and took leftovers to work for lunch – my coworkers were all jealous of my fancy meal (but I didn’t share with any of them). I made a dipping sauce of sriracha, honey, and a bit of vegan mayo, and it complemented the burgers really well.

  19. I made these for my family tonight and they were a bit hit. My 4yo daughter was particularly happy with her ‘pink dinner’! Absolutely delicious and so easy to make, thank you x

  20. Just made these for dinner & they were delicious. Have 6 in the freezer for another night. I added some chilli flakes, tarragon and parsley (as they needed using up). Really delicious, thank you & it’s good to have you back.

  21. I made these using swede, rather than beets (no beets in the organic box this week, but a large swede which I’ve been wondering what to do with) and they worked just fine! Next try will be a mix of carrot and swede, with ginger, and of course garlic and turmeric.

  22. Hello,
    These are wonderful! I’ve made them and also eaten one from frozen- just prepared it in an Airfryer from completely frozen and it worked out well.
    My latest combo: in a pitta bread with blue cheese… yum 🙂
    I’m inspired by your blog and recipes, thank you so much!

  23. Hello Jack, hope you are well.
    I am looking for any vegan recipes, meals in particular, that can be frozen. Can you help?
    Thank you,

  24. Fantastic recipe, Jack. Just made them with smoked paprika which was especially delicious. 🙂

  25. This looks really good! I want to eat more beats but I don’t have an idea as to how to prepare them. I basically live on homemade black bean burgers so throwing these bad boys in rotation to switch things up is going to be a real pleasure.

    Thanks for sharing!


  26. Jack I just made this with my sister, we’ve been trying out different veg burger recipes for a long time and this was absolutely divine. So cheap and easy too! Very nice in a pitta with cucumber. THANK YOU!!!

  27. Loving all the recipes, must try them! Hate cookbooks that make you buy one very hard-to-source, never before heard of, ingredient (which you will never use again!). So this is a breath of fresh air to me! We don’t all live in London with access to delis / markets etc! PS seems to think you’re the same blogger who lives in Bali?!

  28. Just made them for a vegan guest. Brilliant. Thanks. Also grated some parsnip in seeing it was around; and ground up some oats instead of flour because another guest can’t take gluten and everyone wanted them. We thought we would double the spices next time. (But tomorrow I am going to put chilli sauce onto the spares that I’ve sneaked into the fridge. Can’t wait!). The coriander sounds great. Wish I had known. This can now be added to my limited ancient repertoire. Been cooking for a large family for 49 years now, but recipes are the way forward!

  29. Here I go again, three months later! My son and I had THE BEST starter ever, with halves of these from the freezer fried, and wafer-thin slices of turnips, salted, beside them. Looked like the best restaurant.

  30. I made these the other day. I had some insipid-tasting pre-cooked beets, the sort that are vacuum packed in the supermarket, that I wanted to use. They were rather mushy, and in a burger bun the patties lacked texture: next time I will use fresh beets.
    HOWEVER, I am using up the remaining patties with my breakfast, just refried in a little oil, with mushrooms and toast, and they are delicious. I am trying to find breakfast alternatives and these patties mean I do not miss bacon.
    I can’t wait to try them with fresh beers. Another winner, and helping me eat more veg deliciously. Thanks for the recipe

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