If you’re not a fan of fall and its associated foods, then you probably haven’t enjoyed Smart Cookie in the last few weeks. Between the Little Owl Cookies, Candy Corn Golden Oreo-Stuffed Pumpkin Cookies, Halloween Monster Cake Balls, Roasted Cauliflower Asiago Soup, Jack Skellington Cake, Pumpkin Alfredo Tortellini, and more, we’ve got fall coming out the ears here. I won’t apologize though; I love the season and all the delicious foods it brings. I intend to milk the month of October for all it’s worth!
Today, we’re breaking out my favorite fall food: squash, sweet butternut squash to be exact. These Caramelized Onion & Butternut Squash Burgers are bursting with fall flavors. They’re slightly sweet thanks to the squash and those succulent, golden brown caramelized onions. Plus, these burgers are savory and hearty with quinoa, brown rice, and eggs to bulk it up. You’ll find yourself just as full and satisfied, if not more so, than if you ate a hamburger, but you’re getting three times the flavor and nutrients.
Let’s all take a moment to jump into a pile of leaves with glee, for these burgers are extremely delicious AND nutritious. You can always count on squash to take good care of you, much like how you can always count on caramelized onions to bring flavor gold to the table.
Thank goodness we have food to look out for us.
A Few Tips Before You Get Cooking:
- Butternut squash is a pain the you-know-what to peel and chop, so I recommend getting the pre-chopped stuff.
- Sage would be delicious in here in place of parsley.
- You can use about 1/4 cup of flour as a binder instead of the breadcrumbs if you prefer.
- I used jalapeno cheddar cheese on these, which was fantastic. Sharp cheddar or muenster would also be a great pairing.
- I recommend preparing these ahead of time. The patties can chill for up to 2 days before you bake them. In fact, they’re more flavorful if you do so.
- If you can’t find the quinoa/brown rice mix, you can use strictly one or the other.
Caramelized Onion and Butternut Squash Burgers
By The Smart Cookie Cook
Yield: 6-8 burgers (depending on how big you make them)
- 2 large yellow onions, sliced
- 3 tbsp. butter
- 1 whole butternut squash, peeled and chopped
- 1 15.5-oz. can chickpeas, drained and rinsed.
- 2 cups quinoa & brown rice blend
- 1/4 cup egg substitute, like Egg Beaters (or 2 eggs)
- 1 cup Panko breadcrumbs
- 1 tbsp. flour, optional
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tbsp. fresh chopped parsley
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp. pepper
- 3 tbsp. grated parmesan cheese
- Bring a medium skillet to medium heat. Melt the butter. Add the onions and cover. Let cook, stirring occasionally, until browned, tender, and sweet, about 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, place the squash in a microwave-safe casserole dish and fill 1/2-inch deep with water. Cover and microwave on high until squash is tender, about 8 minutes. Drain. While the squash is cooking, cook the quinoa and brown rice blend according to box directions.
- Place the squash and chickpeas in a food processor and process until smooth, but still slightly chunky.
- Place all ingredients in a large mixing bowl and stir until well-combined. See if you can form a patty. The mixture will be sticky, but should still hold together. If not, add the flour. Cover and refrigerate until ready to cook, up to 2 days.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray. Use your hands to form the mixture into round patties, making them bigger or smaller to your liking (I went bigger). Place the burgers on the baking sheet and bake for 30-40 minutes, or until golden brown and hot in the middle (time will vary depending on the size of your burger). If adding cheese, place it on top of the burgers during the last few minutes of cooking so it can melt. Serve with whatever fixings you like, or enjoy plain.