Lentils are so nutritionally rich that I think they should be eaten way more often – in fact, I just wrote a whole blog post about Loading Up on Lentils. So we were thrilled to read a request from Sarah, a Whole Story reader, who was looking for a creative way to prepare tasty and enticing lentils. We took her up on the challenge and developed a flavorful and nutritious lentil burger just in time for summer. This meatless patty is packed with vegetables and fiber-containing brown rice and walnuts. Ounce for ounce, it has fewer calories, saturated fat and cholesterol than a traditional burger. So the next time you’re craving a burger, think about trying a lentil burger! You can check out our complete recipe, as well as leave comments and ratings, on our Lentil Walnut Burgers recipe page. Here’s how we chose the ingredients for our makeover:
- Lentils are a nutrition powerhouse! They have the ability to absorb flavors from other foods, and they are an excellent source of folate, a very good source of dietary fiber and manganese, and a good source of iron, protein, phosphorus, copper, thiamin and potassium. In addition to providing slow burning complex carbohydrates, lentils are a concentrated source of iron – an attribute this legume shares with red meat but without the added fat and extra calories.
- Carrots are full of vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin K, fiber and potassium. They also add sweet flavor and bright color.
- Mushrooms give a boost of potassium, phosphorus, zinc, B vitamins and protein. They also contribute robust flavor and add moisture.
- Brown rice naturally contains fiber, B vitamins, manganese, phosphorus and iron. We use this whole grain as a binder in place of breadcrumbs to make these burgers gluten-free.
- Walnuts are packed with omega-3 essential fatty acids, important for supporting cardiovascular health. They also provide dietary fiber, manganese and copper, not to mention texture and rich flavor.