Recipe: BBQ Vegan Burgers

The recipe calls for cooked brown rice. I usually cook a HUGE pot of rice and then freeze it in family sized portions so that I can quickly thaw some out instead of having to take the time to cook some. If you don’t have some leftover brown rice make sure you make extra time to do that before you make these. And make extras so you can always have some on hand!  

Dealing with tomato paste: take out the tablespoon you need and then get a baking sheet and line it with parchment paper or freezer paper. Scoop out the remaining tomato paste in 1 Tablespoon increments and blob them onto the paper. Freeze until solid and transfer to a freezer safe bag. Now you can just pull one out when you need it and throw it into soups, burgers, dressings, or whatever else!  This method is also perfect for chipotles in adobo sauce. 

Update! – I used 1 cup of lentils instead of tempeh and it worked great!


  • 8 oz tempeh OR 1 cup of cooked lentils OR 1 cup TVP granules + 1 cup vegetable broth
  • 1/2 onion, minced  
  • 3/4 cup vital wheat gluten
  • 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup nutritional yeast (or 1/4 cup flour if you don’t have it / don’t like it) 
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • 1/2 cup bbq sauce (Trader Joe’s has some awesome sauce!) 
  • 1 Tablespoon low sodium soy sauce or tamari
  • 1 Tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 cup cooked brown rice  
  • 1 Tablespoon grill seasoning (It’s a salt and spices blend. You can buy it or make your own – here’s a recipe I just found!)  

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.  

If you are using tempeh you may want to steam it before adding to the burgers. Steam over a pot of boiling water for about 10 minutes. Then set aside to let cool. Once it’s cool chop it up until it is pretty fine – about 1/4″ pieces max. It should crumble up a bunch and that’s good! 


If you are using TVP you want to heat up your vegetable broth until simmering and add it to the dry TVP granules. Let it sit until it has absorbed all of the liquid.  

Set a large nonstick skillet over medium high heat and add your onions. You may also want to add a few tablespoons of water to keep them from sticking to the pan. Cook until they are nice and translucent. Add the minced garlic and cook for 1 minute longer. Add to your tempeh or TVP and let cool. 

In a separate bowl mix together your vital wheat gluten, flour, nutritional yeast, and grill seasoning blend.

Mix the BBQ sauce, tomato paste, soy sauce and rice with your tempeh or TVP mixture. Then add that to your dry mix. Stir to combine and then knead for a minute or so. 

Separate your mixture into 6 patties and place on the parchment lined baking sheet. 

Bake for 15 minutes and then flip. Bake for an additional 15 minutes.

Grill Option!!: grill over medium hot coals for 10 minutes on each side!! SUPER YUMMY!

Let them cool for a few minutes and then serve up on some awesome Dave’s Killer Bread Blues Buns with some fresh veggies and condiments. I let everyone just make their own at our house! (Yeah, that’s sliced red bell pepper in those pictures. It tastes awesome!)

Nutritional information per serving : Serving size:  1 burger patty made with tempeh

? WWPointsPlus  266 calories, 5.3g total fat, 0mg cholesterol, 33.1g carbohydrates, 4.1g fiber, 8.7g sugar, 25.3g protein