Magical Meatless BBQs

Hello friends! Sorry for the extended hiatus. That first post really wore me out. I’ve also been quite busy moving into my new condo! vegetarian BBQDoesn’t it look beautiful? As you can see, we hired some painters that didn’t really know how to paint, so fixing that has taken up much of my time.

At this point, I’d like to offer a piece of unsolicited advice and tell you to never try to move yourself. Especially when there are only two of you and one of you maxes out at lifting 60 pounds. Needless to say, my husband and I will die in this condo because we’re never moving again.

But you clicked on a link to read about vegetarian BBQ food, not my moving woes, so that’s enough of that! For those of you who want to enjoy a fun summer BBQ, but don’t enjoy the meat sweats, this one’s for you. I’m sure you’re familiar with the eye rolls and the jabs about being “un-American” any time you ask about the vegetarian option on Memorial Day, 4th of July or Labor Day. So I’ve stopped asking and started bringing my own meal to the hosts’ house, which has ALWAYS gotten a GREAT response! The grill master just LOVES when you push him or her aside to fire up your quinoa patties.

The key to success, of course, is to bring enough to share—or host your own damn BBQ. Here are two recipes that, in my experience, have impressed even the most carnivorous dinos.

The first is a quinoa burger from How Sweet It Is. Note: if you’re thinking you can just throw some tin foil on the grill and cook these bad boys on there, the answer is no, no you can’t. Learn from my mistakes and cook them in a skillet like the recipe says.

The other recipe is for a beet burger from MyFitnessPal, which has sadly been taken down from the World Wide Web. Luckily, the geniuses at the tech company where I work taught me how to go back in time and rescue an old webpage. Needless to say, I’ll be using this trick to go back and read the deleted Xanga and LiveJournal accounts of all my friends. But for now, you can read the recipe below.

I have to admit, it took some convincing before my T-Rexes would try the beet burger, but when they did, boy did they love it! I hope you enjoy them as much as my family did at our 4th of July celebration. Look how happy they look!

vegetarian BBQ

*I had to blur their faces for anonymity. But I promise, they’re all smiling.

So there you have it! Vegetarians are no longer limited to sides and dessert at BBQs. All it takes is a great vegetarian BBQ recipe and a total disregard for proper party etiquette.

Stay tuned for my next post, which at the rate I’m going will be right around Thanksgiving. But to all my T-Rexes out there, I promise it won’t be about tofu turkey.

Beet Burgers


  • 1 pound raw beets
  • 1 cup walnuts
  • 1 medium sweet potato
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • ¼ cup minced onion
  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons rice vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Sriracha (or chili paste of choice)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 6 hamburger buns (optional, not included in nutrition)


  • Preheat oven to 350F.
  • Poke the sweet potato with a fork and cook in the microwave until tender, about 5 minutes. Set aside.
  • Peel the beets and shred them with a box grater. Place shredded beets into a large mixing bowl.
  • Grind walnuts in a food processor (or clean coffee grinder) until fine, about the texture of couscous.
  • Peel the skin off the sweet potato and mash in a small bowl with a fork. Toss into the mixing bowl with the beets. Add egg, onion, paprika, garlic, vinegar, Worcestershire, and ground walnuts to the beets. Stir well.
  • Form into 6 patties and place on a greased cookie sheet. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until they beginto darken in color.
  • Meanwhile, assemble the aioli by mixing the mayonnaise, vinegar, Sriracha and garlic until well blended.
  • Top burgers with 1 tablespoon of aioli and serve on a whole-wheat bun or over a plate of baby greens.

Nutrition Information

Serves: 6 | Serving Size: 1 beet burger + 1 tablespoon aioli (bun not included)

Per serving: Calories: 282; Total Fat: 23g; Saturated Fat: 3g; Cholesterol: 40mg; Sodium: 252mg; Carbohydrate: 17g; Dietary Fiber: 4g; Sugar: 8g; Protein: 6g

Nutrition Bonus: Potassium: 428mg; Vitamin A: 67%; Vitamin C: 9%; Iron: 10%; Calcium: 4%