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Customizable Burgers
Customizable Burgers


  • Quinoa - 1/2 cup
  • Extra virgin olive oil – 1 tbsp
  • Onion – ½ cup (1/2 small onion), chopped
  • Canned pinto (or any other type) beans – 1 cup, drained
  • Cilantro - 1/2 cup, finely chopped (can be replaced with parsley)
  • Walnuts - 1/3 cup, chopped, lightly toasted
  • Cumin - 1/2 tsp
  • Smoked paprika - 1/4 tsp
  • Pepper jack (or other) cheese - 4 slices
  • 4 corn tortillas (6-inch)
  • Mild green chilies - 1 can ( 4 oz), drained
  • Guacamole (or other sauce), optional
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • Canola oil, for grill grate


  1. Rinse the quinoa with cold water (use a fine sieve). Pour ¾ cup water into a small saucepan and bring it to boil. Season with salt; stir in the quinoa. Cook over low heat under cover until the water has absorbed (about 12 minutes). NB! In order to check if the water has absorbed, tilt the pan. Do not stir! Turn off the heat; let the quinoa sit for 5 minutes.
  2. Pre-heat olive oil in a small skillet over medium heat. Add chopped onions; season with salt. Cook until soft and translucent, stirring occasionally (about 5 minutes).
  3. Pulse the quinoa, pinto beans, cilantro, onions, walnuts in a food processor. Season with salt, cumin and paprika; pulse more to combine well. Put the mixture into a large bowl; use it to form ¾-inch-thick patties. NB! Moisten your hands to prevent the mixture from sticking to them!
  4. Prepare the grill for cooking. Preheat the grate for 10 minutes; rub with canola oil. Coat the patties in olive oil (use a brush) and place on the grate. Grill for about 4 minutes; turn with great care; grill for another 3 minutes until both sides are golden brown. Cover the patty with cheese for the last fourth minute of grilling to let it melt.
  5. Warm the tortillas. Serve the patties on tortillas with chilies and sauces of your choice.