These vegetarian Middle Eastern chickpea burgers are made with fresh herbs and topped with Tzatziki, a creamy cucumber-dill yogurt sauce.
Kids can be picky eaters. They love one thing one week and hate it the next. My kids don’t always prefer meat and frequently choose vegetables, beans and seafood over steak and chicken. Since it’s burger season, I knew just the solution: Hearty and satisfying vegetarian chickpea burgers.
These burgers are made with flavorful herbs and topped with my cucumber dill Greek Tzatziki sauce — and they were a home run with my kids! If you’ve never made vegetarian burgers at home before, I urge you to give it a try. Unlike store-bought varieties filled with artificial ingredients and fillers, homemade vegetarian burgers boast simple, fresh ingredients you may already have on hand, like canned beans, bread crumbs and spices.
Luckily, everything you need for these beauties can be found at your local grocery store. I promise you will want to add these vegetarian chickpea burgers with Tzatziki sauce to your repertoire. They are easy, affordable and way more delicious than anything you’ll find in the freezer aisle.
How to Make Vegetarian Chickpea Burgers
First, place canned chickpeas (be sure to drain and rinse), lemon juice and scallions in a high-speed food processor. Chickpeas are super high in protein and work as an excellent meat replacement in vegetarian recipes.
Second, chop the parsley. Bunch the leaves together, remove the stems and rock-chop the parsley with an up and down motion. You do this by keeping the blade still while you push the leaves forward.
Third, add salt, smoked paprika and cumin to boost the flavor. You can also add cayenne as an optional step (if you want to bolster the spiciness!)
Fourth, add egg to the mixture. The egg serves as a natural binder and is another added protein for these burgers.
Fifth, pulse the mixture on high until it’s smooth and the fresh ingredients are evenly incorporated. (Psst: It’s fine if it’s slightly chunky — a little bit of texture is a fantastic thing!)
Then, remove the mixture from the food processor and place it into a medium bowl. Slowly stir in the breadcrumbs a few tablespoons at a time.
Continue to add breadcrumbs until the mixture is dry enough to form patties with your hands.
To make this process easier, divide the bowl mixture into quarters with your hands to create four patties. This is one of my favorite parts of the process — it’s fun and therapeutic!
Afterward, place the chickpea patties on a platter and drizzle them with a little olive oil. Flip them once to make sure the patties are lightly oiled on both sides.
Lastly, it’s time to cook the patties. Heat a non-stick griddle or frying pan over medium-high heat and brown the patties until they are golden brown. This takes about 4-5 minutes per side.
Create the Greek Tzatziki Sauce
While the patties are cooking, you can make my famous tzatziki sauce. First, add diced cucumber, fresh dill and plain Greek yogurt in a separate bowl.
Next, grate two cloves of garlic and add lemon juice, salt and pepper.
Stir all of the ingredients together and add more dill, lemon, garlic or salt/pepper if you wish. Be sure to see my tzatziki sauce recipe for a more detailed guide.
Finally, to serve the vegetarian chickpea burgers, place one patty in between each hamburger bun and top with tzatziki sauce. You can also add other preferred condiments.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can you freeze homemade chickpea burgers?
Yes! They will last in the freezer for about three months. Make sure the burgers cool completely, store them separately from the Tzatziki sauce and freeze them in a zip-top freezer bag.
What should you make with homemade chickpea burgers?
This recipe is very filling, however if you’re looking for additional ideas, you may want to pair these with roasted asparagus or an orzo salad!
How long does the homemade Greek Tzatziki sauce last?
I recommend storing it separately from the patties in an airtight container. It will last in the refrigerator for up to five days.
While you’re here, you may also want to explore these recipes:
- Lebanese Chickpea Salad
- 20 Easy Recipes Made with Chickpeas
- Greek Turkey Burgers with Creamy Tzatziki Sauce
- Greek Lamb Burgers with Tzatziki Sauce
- Greek Lamb Chops with Tzatziki Sauce
- Vegetarian Burrito Bowls with Honey Chipotle Vinaigrette
No forks required.
Vegetarian Chickpea Burgers with Tzatziki Sauce
- 15 ounces canned chickpeas (drained and rinsed)
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- ¼ cup scallions
- ¼ cup parsley
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne (optional)
- 1 large egg
- ⅓ cup panko bread crumbs
- extra virgin olive oil (as needed)
- 4 whole wheat hamburger buns
- 4 servings Greek Tzatziki Sauce
- tomato slices, lettuce, onion slices (optional to serve)
- Place the first 9 ingredients (chickpeas through egg) in a high speed food processor and pulse on high until the mixture is smooth and everything is evenly incorporated. (It’s ok if it’s slightly chunky – texture is good.)
- Remove mixture from the food processor and place into a medium bowl. Working a couple tablespoons at a time, slowly stir in the bread crumbs. Continue adding breadcrumbs until the mixture is dry enough to form patties.
- Divide the bowl into quarters with your hands and carefully form four patties. Place patties on a platter drizzled with a little olive oil and flip once so the patties are lightly oiled on both sides.
- To cook, heat a non-stick griddle or frying pan over medium-high heat. Brown patties until golden brown, about 4-5 minutes per side.
- While the patties are cooking, make the tzatziki sauce in a separate bowl. To serve, place one patty in between each hamburger bun and top with tzatziki sauce and other designed condiments.1
I looked closer to the recipe.
Although the burgers look yummy, the salt content is way too high!
The carbs are very high as well.
I am a type 2 diabetic. I can’t eat them..
Hi Debbie – I would recommend a low carb beef burger with a lettuce bun if you’re counting carbs! Beans are inherently a carb because they are legumes. Have you tried this one? https://thelemonbowl.com/bunless-cheeseburgers-with-sriracha-ketchup/
Or you can keep the bean juice
and use as egg replacer.
Love the Middle Eastern spin you put on these veggie burgers. And really, you can never go wrong with anything slathered with tzatziki. :)
Basically I wanted to eat falafel in burger form. ;)
Wow, these look AMAZING!!
Thank you!! They turned out so good!
I have been loving tzatziki lately, but have never tried it on a veggie burger. It’s on my rotation for next week, thanks!
I hope you love it!
I love making chickpea burgers!
You can’t beat them!
Do you think the flavor would be terribly compromised by cutting back on the salt? A teaspoon sounds like a lot to me …. love the idea of chickpeas for something other than hummus!
It’s a matter of preference but in general when you’re cooking from scratch you need to add a decent amount of salt to bring out the other flavors. Anything you eat in a restaurant or purchase from a freezer has more salt than you would use at home so that’s something to keep in mind. All that said, you could leave it out entirely – it’s completely up to you!
I think that someone mixed up the order of the ingredients. It says to put the first 8 ingredients in food processor (chickpeas through parsley) but that’s only the first 4 ingredients, and what about the egg? I mean it’s easy to figure out but some might find it a little confusing. Otherwise it sounds like a great recipe. Thanks.
So sorry about that Mabel – the recipe has been corrected! :) I hope you love it!
These look amazing, Liz!
You would love these!