Middle-Eastern Chickpea Burgers

These chickpea patties make a healthy — and zesty — alternative to hamburgers.

Plate of chickpea burger and tomatoes on greens

Makes 16 patties
Prep time: 15 minutes, plus time to soak and cook chickpeas and prepare rice
Cook time: 20 to 25 minutes


  • 2 cups cooked chickpeas
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp. turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp. paprika
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp. ground coriander
  • 1/8 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 2 tsp. minced garlic
  • 1 tsp. minced gingerroot
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 3 tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tbs. freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 1/2 cups cooked brown basmati rice
  • 3 tbs. finely diced red bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup loosely packed minced fresh flat-leaf parsley


  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Combine the chickpeas, salt, spices, garlic, ginger, egg, olive oil, and lemon juice in a food processor and process until smooth, scraping the sides occasionally.
  3. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and fold in the rice, bell pepper, and parsley.
  4. Moisten your hands to keep the mixture from sticking to them, then shape the mixture into 1/4-inch-thick patties about 2 1/2 inches in diameter. Place patties on the prepared pan and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until they start to get dry and crisp on the outside. They will firm up as they cool. Serve.

Cook’s notes:

  • To freeze these burgers, either cooked or uncooked, stack them between layers of parchment paper, then wrap first in plastic followed by foil. (The parchment paper makes it easy to remove the desired number of burgers from the bundle. The plastic wrap helps prevent freezer burn.) Once thawed, cooked burgers can be reheated at 350 degrees F for 15 minutes; uncooked burgers can be baked as directed above.
  • For a crispy burger, heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil in a skillet over medium heat and cook the patties for about three minutes on each side, until golden brown. For a vegan burger, substitute 1 tablespoon tahini for the egg.

MS, director of the Healing Kitchens Institute at Commonweal, is the author of several cookbooks, including The Longevity Kitchen and The Cancer-Fighting Kitchen, from which some of these recipes are adapted. She lives in San Rafael, Calif.

Photos: Andrea DAgosto; Prop Styling: Alicia Buszczak; Food Stylist: Paul Jackman

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