We took inspiration from falafel when developing these burgers — but unlike the dense, often dry deep-fried chickpea fritters, this sautéed patty is light and rich in texture, with added depth from roasted garlic. Topped with an array of veggies and a sprinkle of feta, it's a perfect weekend lunch.
Note: Individual burgers can be formed and then frozen, sealed, for up to one month. Thaw and cook as needed.
For the Chickpea Burger
- 1⁄3 cup olive oil, separated
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 1 small stalk celery, finely chopped
- 1 tbsp. fresh thyme leaves
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 (15-oz) can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
- 1 cup cooked brown rice
- 8 cloves garlic, roasted and peeled
- 1⁄4 cup sesame tahini
- 2 tsp. lemon zest
- 1⁄4 cup finely chopped parsley
- 1 egg
- 2 oz. sprouts
- 1 small cucumber, thinly sliced
- 2 Roma tomatoes, cored and sliced 1/2" thick
- 3 oz. feta, crumbled
- 3 pocket pitas cut in half crosswise, or 6 hamburger buns, split and toasted
Heat 2 tbsp. olive oil in a 12" skillet over medium high heat. Add onions, celery and thyme and cook until soft, about 4 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl and reserve. Wipe skillet clean.
Place chickpeas and rice in a food processor, along with garlic, tahini, and zest. Pulse until chickpeas and rice are chopped, but not yet a paste, about 8 pulses or about 10 seconds. Transfer mixture to the bowl with the onions. Add parsley and egg, season with salt and pepper, and mix well to combine. Divide mixture into six 4 oz. patties, about 3" wide x 1⁄2" thick. Place on a plate and refrigerate for 20 minutes or until ready to use.
Heat 2 tbsp. oil in skillet over medium high heat and cook burgers in batches of 3, flipping once halfway through until toasted on each side and cooked through, about 2 minutes per side. Repeat with remaining oil and burgers.
Divide burgers, sprouts, sliced cucumber, tomato and feta between pita pocket halves or buns and serve.