Vegan ‘chicken’ burgers
These vegan ‘chicken’ burgers are made with TVP for the perfect ‘meaty’ texture! They’re so easy to make, and perfect with your favourite burger sauce.
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I make veggie burgers quite often, but they’re usually bean– or lentil-based, rather than ‘meaty’. So this time I tried something a bit different, and made these vegan ‘chicken’ burgers using TVP! Pile them high with sauces and salad for a tasty vegan burger.
Vegetarian ‘chicken’ burgers
It’s hard to beat a good veggie burger – there’s something super satisfying about picking up a big bun stuffed with a tasty burger and plenty of salad, and taking a huge bite. My usual cheesy lentil burgers are insanely good, but this time I fancied something a bit meatier, and decided to try making a meat-style veggie burger instead.
To make these vegan ‘chicken’ burgers, I used TVP! I’d actually never used TVP before, so this was a first for me, but I found it really easy to cook with.
What is TVP?
TVP stands for ‘textured vegetable protein‘, and it’s essentially a dried meat substitute made from soybeans. I know, the name doesn’t exactly make it sound irresistible, but it’s actually a really versatile product! It has a chewier, ‘meatier’ texture than a lot of other meat substitutes.
TVP doesn’t have much flavour on its own, so it’s perfect for soaking up whatever flavours you add to it.
Some TVP comes minced, but to make these ‘chicken’ burgers, I actually used these TVP chunks from Indigo Herbs, which is an online whole foods shop based in Glastonbury. They stock all sorts of incredible products, including lots of things you might struggle to find elsewhere.
My favourite section on the Indigo Herbs site is the wholefoods section, where you can buy big bags of dried beans and grains, seeds, dried fruit, and loads of other things.
How to cook with TVP
Since TVP comes dried, you need to start by rehydrating it. To get some flavour into it straight off the bat, I soaked my TVP in vegetable stock.
Just soak the TVP chunks for around 10-15 minutes, until they’re soft. They have a tendency to float on top of the stock, so just dunk them under again every now and then to ensure they all rehydrate nicely!
Make the ‘chicken’ burger mixture
When the TVP is ready to use, add it to a food processor. You don’t want it to be completely blended up, as you still want your burgers to have some texture, so just pulse it a few times to break down the chunks of TVP.
Add some flour to bind it all together, and plenty of seasoning – some of my favourite smoked paprika, salt and pepper, garlic, and some dried herbs.
Then shape the mixture into burgers, and fry on both sides in a dash of oil. They get so perfectly crispy!
Load them up!
Finally – serve them in buns with plenty of salad and sauce! It will really elevate the burgers and make them truly irresistible.
I kept things simple – mayo (use vegan mayo to keep these ‘chicken’ burgers vegan!), ketchup, and some lettuce and sliced tomatoes.
My homemade burger sauce is also insanely good, if you fancy something a bit different. You’ll never guess what the secret ingredient is!
So have I inspired you to try TVP? It’s such a handy product to keep in the kitchen, as it’s shelf-stable (just reseal the bag and it can be stored in the cupboard), and so easy to use.
If you’re making a stew or something, you don’t even need to soak it before use – just throw it straight in, and it can rehydrate in the pan. I’ll definitely be using it again and again!
Don’t forget to grab a bag of TVP chunks from Indigo Herbs!
Vegan ‘chicken’ burgers
- 750 ml (~ 3 cups) hot vegetable stock
- 200 g (~ 3 cups) dried TVP chunks
- 2 tsp smoked paprika
- 1 tsp garlic granules
- 1 tsp dried Italian mixed herbs
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 1 tsp salt
- 45 g (~ 1/3 cup) plain flour
- 2 tbsp oil, for frying
- To serve: 6 burger buns, salad, sauces
- Pour the hot vegetable stock into a large bowl, and add the dried TVP chunks. You can add a little more water if needed, to ensure they’re fully covered in liquid. Soak for at least 15 minutes, until soft – you may need to give them a stir every few minutes to ensure all the chunks are soaking properly, as they tend to float to the surface of the liquid.
- Drain the liquid from the TVP chunks, collecting a small amount of it in a bowl.
- Place the soaked TVP chunks in a food processor, and pulse a few times to chop the TVP into a mince-like texture.
- Transfer the TVP to another mixing bowl, and add the remaining ingredients (not including the oil). Add about a tablespoon of the soaking liquid, and mix thoroughly.
- Heat a dash of oil in a frying pan. Take a handful of the TVP mixture, and form it into a burger shape. I found I needed to squeeze it together quite firmly. Place in the pan, and repeat with some more of the mixture – I cooked 3 burgers at a time, making 6 in total. Cook the burgers for a few minutes each side, over a medium heat, until crispy and golden brown.
- Serve in buns with salad and sauce.
Note: Nutritional information is approximate, and will depend on exactly what ingredients you choose. Information above is for 1 burger, patty only.