Quick and Easy Vegan Dinner Recipes for Busy Weeknights

Howdy y’all! As a chef and lover of burgers, I am excited to share with you my recipe for Vegan Cowboy Burgers (Steamed). Now, I know what some of you might be thinking: “Vegan burgers? That doesn’t sound like something I want to sink my teeth into.” But trust me, these burgers are packed with flavor and will leave you feeling satisfied.

I created this cowboy burger recipe with the intention of making a plant-based burger that tastes like meat. And let me tell you, I’ve nailed it. These burgers use a combination of hearty ingredients like black beans, quinoa, and oats, along with flavorful spices like paprika, thyme, and garlic.

But why go for a vegan burger instead of a traditional beef burger? Well, for starters, it’s a more sustainable and ethical choice. Plant-based burgers have a lower carbon footprint and don’t contribute to the environmental degradation that comes with animal agriculture. Plus, they’re healthier for you! These burgers are packed with protein, fiber, and other essential nutrients.

So, whether you’re a vegan, vegetarian, or just looking to switch up your burger game, I promise you won’t be disappointed with these Vegan Cowboy Burgers. Get ready to rustle up some flavor, partner!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Vegan Cowboy Burgers (Steamed)
Vegan Cowboy Burgers (Steamed)

Are you on the hunt for a delicious and hearty vegan burger recipe that will satisfy your taste buds and leave you feeling satisfied? Look no further than my vegan cowboy burgers! Trust me, these burgers are not your typical veggie burgers. They are packed with flavor and a satisfying texture that will make you forget you’re not eating meat.

First and foremost, these burgers are incredibly easy to make. With just a handful of ingredients, you can have a delicious meal on the table in no time. Plus, they are steamed, which means they are a healthier alternative to traditional burgers that are fried or grilled.

One of the key ingredients in these burgers is the combination of oats, walnut meal, and vital wheat gluten flour. This trio of ingredients creates a texture that is incredibly similar to ground beef, making these burgers the perfect option for those who are looking for a plant-based alternative to traditional burgers without sacrificing flavor or texture.

Not only are these burgers delicious, but they are also incredibly versatile. You can customize the recipe to fit your taste preferences by adding in different spices and seasonings. Want a little extra kick? Add in some paprika or onion powder. Want to give your burgers a southwestern flair? Add in some black beans and quinoa.

Overall, my vegan cowboy burgers are the perfect option for anyone who is looking for a delicious and hearty plant-based meal. They are easy to make, packed with flavor and texture, and incredibly versatile. So what are you waiting for? Give this recipe a try and see for yourself why these burgers are sure to become a staple in your meal rotation.

Ingredient List

 Get ready to wrangle some flavor with these Vegan Cowboy Burgers!
Get ready to wrangle some flavor with these Vegan Cowboy Burgers!

Before you start cooking, get all your ingredients together. Here’s what you’ll need for these vegan cowboy burgers:

For the Burger Patties:

  • 1 1/2 cups of cooked quinoa
  • 1 1/2 cups of cooked black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup of rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup of walnut meal
  • 1/2 cup of vital wheat gluten flour
  • 1/4 cup of nutritional yeast flakes
  • 2 teaspoons of paprika
  • 2 teaspoons of onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon of ground allspice
  • 1 teaspoon of dried thyme
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 cup of water

For the BBQ Sauce:

  • 1/2 cup of your favorite barbecue sauce
  • 2 tablespoons of soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil

For the Toppings:

  • Burger buns
  • Sliced tomatoes
  • Sliced red onion
  • Lettuce leaves

Make sure to have all these ingredients ready before you start cooking. You can find most of these ingredients at your local grocery store or health food store.

The Recipe How-To

 This burger is so hearty, you'll forget it's vegan.
This burger is so hearty, you’ll forget it’s vegan.

Now, let’s get to the fun part – cooking! Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to make these delicious Vegan Cowboy Burgers.

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Yield: 6-8 burgers


  • 1 cup of water
  • 1/2 cup of soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup of barbecue sauce
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 cup of walnut meal
  • 1 cup of oats
  • 1/4 cup of nutritional yeast flakes
  • 1/4 cup of vital wheat gluten flour
  • 1/2 cup of cooked quinoa
  • 1 can of black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 teaspoon of paprika
  • 1 teaspoon of onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon of garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon of ground allspice
  • 1 teaspoon of dried thyme
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the water, soy sauce, barbecue sauce, and olive oil. Whisk until well combined.
  2. Add the walnut meal, oats, nutritional yeast flakes, vital wheat gluten flour, cooked quinoa, and black beans to the mixing bowl. Mix well until everything is evenly combined.
  3. Add the paprika, onion powder, garlic powder, ground allspice, dried thyme, salt, and pepper to the mixture. Mix well again.
  4. Shape the mixture into 6-8 patties, depending on how thick you like your burgers.
  5. Prepare your steamer and place the burgers in the steamer basket. Steam the burgers for 30 minutes.
  6. Once the burgers are done steaming, remove them from the steamer and allow them to cool for a few minutes.
  7. Heat up a non-stick pan over medium-high heat. Cook the burgers for 2-3 minutes on each side until they are lightly browned.
  8. Serve the burgers on your favorite burger buns with all of your favorite toppings.

Note: These burgers can also be air-fried or grilled for a different taste and texture.

This recipe may seem a bit lengthy, but trust me, the end result is worth it. These Vegan Cowboy Burgers are packed with flavor and texture, making them the perfect substitute for traditional beef burgers. Plus, they’re gluten-free and plant-based, so they’re a healthier option that everyone can enjoy.

Substitutions and Variations

 Yee-haw! These burgers are packed with protein and flavor.
Yee-haw! These burgers are packed with protein and flavor.

Don’t be afraid to experiment with different ingredients and flavors to create your own twist on this recipe. Here are some substitution and variation ideas to get you started:

– Instead of black beans, try using chickpeas or lentils for a different texture and flavor.

– Swap out the quinoa for brown rice or couscous to change up the grain in the burger.

– Use a different type of nut meal, such as almond or cashew, in place of the walnut meal.

– Substitute the oats with breadcrumbs or panko for a crispier texture.

– Add some heat with a pinch of cayenne pepper or chili powder.

– For a smoky flavor, try adding a teaspoon of smoked paprika to the seasoning mix.

– Use a different type of barbecue sauce, such as a spicy or sweet variety, to change up the flavor profile.

– Instead of soy sauce, use tamari or coconut aminos for a gluten-free option.

– Make it gluten-free by using a gluten-free flour blend in place of the vital wheat gluten flour.

– Add some veggies to the mix, such as shredded carrots, zucchini, or mushrooms, for extra nutrition.

– Make it a “Western Burger” by topping it with vegan bacon, avocado, and onion rings.

Remember, the possibilities are endless when it comes to substitutions and variations. Don’t be afraid to get creative and make this recipe your own.

Serving and Pairing

 Saddle up and try these delicious steamed burgers.
Saddle up and try these delicious steamed burgers.

Now that you have made these delicious Vegan Cowboy Burgers, it’s time to serve and pair them with some complementary sides and drinks. These burgers can be served with a variety of sides such as potato wedges, sweet potato fries, coleslaw, or a side salad. You can also add some toppings to your burger such as avocado, lettuce, tomato, onion, and pickles.

For the perfect beverage pairing, I recommend a cold glass of iced tea, lemonade or a refreshing soda. You can also pair these burgers with a cold beer or a glass of red or white wine. If you prefer non-alcoholic drinks, you can try a sparkling water, a fruit smoothie, or a fruit juice.

To make these burgers even more delicious, you can add some homemade BBQ sauce or ketchup on top, or serve them with a side of ranch dressing. These burgers are perfect for a summer BBQ, a picnic in the park, or a quick and easy weeknight dinner.

Whether you are serving these burgers for a crowd or just for yourself, they are sure to satisfy your cravings for a hearty and delicious meal. So go ahead and enjoy your Vegan Cowboy Burgers with your favorite sides and drinks, and savor every bite!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 You don't have to be a cowboy to enjoy these vegan burgers.
You don’t have to be a cowboy to enjoy these vegan burgers.

One of the best things about these Vegan Cowboy Burgers is that they can be made ahead of time and stored for later. You can prepare the burger patties and store them in the fridge or freezer until you’re ready to cook them. This makes them perfect for meal prep or for those busy weeknights when you don’t have time to cook from scratch.

To make ahead, simply shape the burger patties and place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Cover the patties with plastic wrap and store them in the fridge for up to 3 days. If you want to store them for longer, you can freeze them for up to 3 months. To freeze, place the patties in a single layer on the baking sheet and freeze them for a few hours until they are firm. Then transfer them to a freezer-safe container or bag.

When you’re ready to cook the burgers, you can either thaw them in the fridge overnight or cook them straight from frozen. If you’re cooking them from frozen, be sure to add a few extra minutes to the cooking time.

To reheat the burgers, you can either use the microwave or the oven. If you’re using the microwave, place the burger on a microwave-safe plate and heat it for 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until hot. If you’re using the oven, preheat it to 350°F and bake the burgers for 10-15 minutes, or until hot.

One thing to keep in mind is that these burgers can be quite fragile, so be gentle when reheating them to avoid them falling apart. But with a little bit of care, you can enjoy these delicious Vegan Cowboy Burgers any time you want!

Tips for Perfect Results

 Take a bite of the Wild West with these plant-based burgers.
Take a bite of the Wild West with these plant-based burgers.

When it comes to making the perfect vegan cowboy burger, there are a few tips and tricks to ensure that your burger is juicy, flavorful, and holds together well. Here are some tips to help you achieve burger perfection:

1. Use vital wheat gluten flour: This ingredient is the key to making a burger that holds together well and has a meaty texture. It’s what gives the burger its chewy, satisfying bite. Make sure to measure it accurately to achieve the right texture.

2. Use a food processor: To achieve a uniform texture, use a food processor to blend the oats and walnuts into a fine meal before adding the other ingredients. This will help the burger hold together well and give it a more meat-like texture.

3. Don’t overwork the dough: Once you’ve mixed all of the ingredients together, be careful not to overwork the dough. Overworking it can result in a tough burger that falls apart easily. Mix until the ingredients are just combined.

4. Let the dough rest: After mixing the dough, let it rest for at least 10 minutes. This will allow the vital wheat gluten to fully absorb the liquid, resulting in a firmer burger.

5. Steam the burgers: To achieve a moist and juicy burger, steam them instead of frying or grilling. Place the burgers in a steamer basket over simmering water and cover with a lid. Steam for 30 minutes, flipping halfway through.

6. Season well: To give your burgers that classic cowboy flavor, season them well with paprika, onion powder, ground allspice, thyme, and garlic. These spices add depth and complexity to the burger.

7. Add moisture: To keep your burger juicy, add a tablespoon of barbecue sauce or soy sauce to the dough mixture. You can also add a tablespoon of water if the mixture seems too dry.

By following these tips, you’ll be well on your way to making the perfect vegan cowboy burger that is flavorful, juicy, and holds together well.


Before we wrap up this recipe article, I want to address some common questions and concerns that may arise when making these vegan cowboy burgers. In this FAQ section, I’ll cover everything from ingredient substitutions to cooking methods and storage options. So, let’s dive in and get your questions answered!

Can you steam veggie burgers?

After steaming and refrigerating the patties overnight, you can proceed to cook them just like regular raw burger patties. You have the option to either pan-fry or grill them to achieve a golden brown color and make sure they are thoroughly cooked. It’s entirely up to your preference. Then, place the patties on a bun and add your preferred vegan burger toppings to complete the dish.

What’s a good binder for vegan burgers?

When it comes to making vegan burgers, finding the right binder is key to holding everything together. While traditional burgers often rely on eggs to bind the ingredients, vegan options require a bit of creativity. Silken tofu, flax eggs, and aquafaba are all excellent vegan binding options that can help your burger hold its shape and texture. The trick is to aim for a binder that mimics the egg-like consistency of traditional burgers, giving your vegan patty the structure it needs to stay together.

How do you firm up vegan burgers?

When it comes to making burgers without eggs, there are a few tricks you can use to ensure the patty stays together. One option is to use an egg substitute like flax eggs. Another option is to add a starchy ingredient such as flour or oats to help bind the ingredients together. It’s crucial to mash everything together well to ensure the mixture sticks together. Additionally, it’s important to keep the patty size reasonable to prevent it from falling apart during cooking.

How do they make vegan burgers taste like meat?

Since ancient times, humans have been consuming a protein called hemoglobin, which contains heme and is present in all living organisms. This key ingredient is responsible for giving Impossible Burgers their meat-like flavor, as well as keeping them succulent, tender, and pink in the middle. As of May 5, 2021, this ingredient is still an important part of the Impossible Burger recipe.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, these Vegan Cowboy Burgers (Steamed) are a must-try for anyone looking to switch to a plant-based diet or simply enjoy a delicious and hearty meal. With a unique blend of spices and ingredients, these burgers taste like meat, but are completely vegan and gluten-free. Whether you’re a seasoned vegan or new to the lifestyle, these burgers will not disappoint.

With endless possibilities for customization and pairing, these burgers are sure to become a staple in your kitchen. So why not try them out for yourself? I guarantee that you won’t be disappointed. Don’t forget to share your creations with friends and family, and spread the joy of plant-based eating.

Vegan Cowboy Burgers (Steamed) Recipe

A fabulous vegan restaurant in Studio City, CA does this amazing trick making seitan taste like a delicious burger. I’m doing my best to represent with this knock-off of the real deal.


  • 2 cups vital wheat gluten flour
  • 1/2 cup nutritional yeast flakes
  • 1/4 cup oats, finely ground or 2 tablespoons oat flour
  • 2 tablespoons walnut meal


  • 1 1/4 cups water
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons barbecue sauce
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  1. These are steamed burgers so before you begin, put your steamer pot on to boil. The recipe comes together very quickly and it’s best if you can wrap ’em and put them right on to steam.
  2. Mix dry ingredients well.
  3. Mix wet ingredients well.
  4. Combine wet and dry ingredients, knead until smooth, let rest.
  5. Cut the dough into eighths and wrap each flattened patty in heavy duty foil.
  6. Steam 40 minutes or until solid "burgery" consistency is reached.
  7. COWBOY UP: Cut the seitan patties into slices about 1/8" thick, put them on a vegan-friendly bun, top with vegan mayo (recipe 90544 is a perfect Veganaise knock off) bbq sauce, a thick slice of tomato, onions and some lettuce leaves. Yeee-hah!
Main Course
< 60 Mins, Healthy, High In…, High Protein, Low Cholesterol, Vegan

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