Vegan Wonder

Unlock the Secret to Mouthwatering Vegan Burgers: Discover the Best Egg Substitutes for Binding

For those embarking on a plant-based culinary journey, crafting a delicious, cohesive veggie burger can be an elusive and frustrating endeavor. While vegan cooks have an impressive array of plant-based ingredients at their disposal, one crucial element is often overlooked: a good binder.

The Importance of Binding in Veggie Burgers

Eggs are a traditional binder for many burger recipes, providing a natural cohesion that holds the patty together. However, eggs present challenges for the vegan cook. Not only do they provide no benefits to those adhering to a plant-based diet, but they also pose difficulties in maintaining the desired texture and consistency without compromising the burger’s structure.

Eggs as a Binder

The proteins in eggs serve as an excellent natural binder. As the egg cooks, the proteins solidify and create a bond between the other ingredients, holding the burger together. Eggs also provide structure, ensuring the patty doesn’t crumble apart when cooked.

Egg-Free Binding Alternatives

Fortunately, there are many plant-based alternatives to eggs for binding. These ingredients may not bind in the same way as eggs, but with a bit of creativity and experimentation, you can achieve similar results.

Flax and Chia Seeds

Ground flaxseeds or chia seeds can be used as an egg substitute by mixing them with a liquid, such as water, to form a gelatinous substance. This mixture can then be added to the burger mixture to help bind the ingredients together. To use this method, mix 1 tablespoon of ground flaxseeds or chia seeds with 3 tablespoons of liquid per egg replaced.

Aquafaba (Chickpea Liquid)

Aquafaba, or the liquid from a can of chickpeas, can be whipped into a meringue-like texture and used to bind ingredients in a similar way to eggs. For best results, use a can of unsalted chickpeas and strain the liquid before whipping. To replace one egg, use 3 tablespoons of aquafaba.

Silken Tofu

Blend 1/4 cup of silken tofu until it forms a smooth paste, then use it as a binder in your burger mixture. You may need to adjust the amount of tofu depending on the wetness of your ingredients.

Breadcrumbs and Oats

Breadcrumbs or oats can be used as a binding agent by absorbing excess moisture in the burger mixture. Use 1/4 to 1/2 cup of breadcrumbs or rolled oats per egg replaced. Be sure to balance the amount of dry and wet ingredients to ensure a good texture.

Perfecting the Vegan Burger Texture

To create a mouthwatering vegan burger, it is essential to achieve the right consistency. Avoid a crumbly or mushy texture by incorporating additional binders, such as nut butters, tahini, or various types of flour. Experiment with these ingredients until you find the perfect combination for your burger recipe.

Additionally, chilling and resting the burger mixture is crucial for allowing the binders to fully hydrate and improving the overall structure and shape of the patty.

Classic Veggie Burger

Here’s a simple and delicious veggie burger recipe to get you started. Use your favorite combination of binders and experiment until you find the perfect texture for your burger.

  • 1 15-ounce can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped bell pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup breadcrumbs
  • 2 tablespoons tomato ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika (optional)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

In a large bowl, mash the chickpeas with a potato masher or fork. Add the rolled oats, onion, bell pepper, garlic, and breadcrumbs, then mix well. In a separate bowl, whisk together the ketchup, soy sauce, paprika (if using), salt, and pepper. Pour the liquid mixture over the chickpea mixture and stir until evenly combined.

If desired, you can also add additional binders, such as ground flaxseeds, chia seeds, or silken tofu, to the chickpea mixture at this stage. Let the mixture rest for at least 15 minutes before shaping into patties and cooking.

Southwest-Inspired Black Bean Burger

For a Southwest-inspired twist on the classic veggie burger, replace the chickpeas with 1 15-ounce can of black beans, drained and rinsed. Add 1/2 cup of corn kernels, 1/4 cup of chopped red onion, 1 teaspoon of chili powder, and 1/2 teaspoon of cumin to the mixture.

To bind this burger, you can use a combination of 1/4 cup of ground flaxseeds mixed with 3 tablespoons of water, 1/4 cup of silken tofu, and 1/4 cup of rolled oats.

Mix the binders into the black bean mixture and let it rest for 15 minutes before shaping and cooking.

Mushroom-Lentil Burger

For a hearty mushroom-lentil burger, sauté 8 ounces of sliced mushrooms in a pan with 1 tablespoon of oil until browned. Add 1 cup of cooked lentils, 1/2 cup of finely chopped onion, 1/2 cup of rolled oats, and 1/4 cup of tahini to the pan. Cook for a few minutes until the ingredients are well combined.

In a separate bowl, whisk together 1/4 cup of soy sauce, 2 tablespoons of tomato ketchup, 1 tablespoon of maple syrup, and 1 teaspoon of smoked paprika. Pour the liquid mixture over the mushroom and lentil mixture and stir until evenly combined.

Let the mixture rest for 15 minutes before shaping and cooking. For a firmer texture, you may want to add a few tablespoons of breadcrumbs or ground flaxseeds to the mixture.


With these egg-free binding alternatives and a few simple techniques, you’ll be well on your way to crafting delicious, cohesive vegan burgers that will impress even the most devoted carnivore. So go forth, experiment with these plant-based binders, and enjoy the journey of perfecting your vegan burger recipe.

Best Vegan Egg Substitutes for Binding

  • Flax and chia seeds
  • Aquafaba (chickpea liquid)
  • Silken tofu
  • Breadcrumbs and oats