Chickpea Burgers with Sour Cherry Salsa

This chickpea burgers with sour cherry salsa recipe is a delicious plant based, healthy dinner idea that’s perfect for meatless Mondays.

Chickpea Burgers with Sour Cherry Salsa

This post was created in partnership with Cherry Marketing Institute. All opinions are our own.

There’s nothing like having a child to make you value family. Alex and my son Larson is just 3 months, but in that time he’s drawn us closer to our extended family as we teach him the joys of grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins. Speaking of, I never got to meet my maternal grandfather. He passed when my mother was only 8, from a heart attack. I’ve always wondered what he was like. Would he have been a mentor figure to me? Did he tell stories? Was he funny? My mother always told me she never envisioned living past 35, since her dad didn’t make it that far. Luckily my mom is happy and healthy today, but it makes me think. What can Alex and I do to make sure we’re here to enjoy the future with Larson and his children?

Related: Our Best Grilled Veggie Burger Recipe

Chickpea Burgers with Sour Cherry Salsa

Tart cherries & health

Of course we can’t change the future or avoid catastrophe, but what we can do is cherish our health. Though we don’t have full control, we can take steps towards ensuring our bodies will be strong and healthy. Since my grandfather’s death from a heart attack in 1961, cardiovascular disease still remains the number 1 killer of both men and women in North America. At the same time, changes in diet and exercise can go a long way in helping to keep your heart healthy.

These chickpea burgers with sour cherry salsa are inspired by the theme of heart health. They’re full of nourishing vegetables and feature tart cherries, since researchers have found that Montmorency tart cherries may provide a number of cardiovascular benefits. Why tart cherries? The health benefits come primarily from anthocyanins, a type of antioxidant found in brightly colored fruits and vegetables. Studies indicate that Montmorency tart cherries may help lower levels of cholesterol and triglycerides, reduce inflammation, and improve belly fat. These are all factors specifically linked to heart disease risk.

Chickpea Burgers with Sour Cherry Salsa

How to make chickpea burgers

These chickpea burgers with zesty sour cherry salsa are a delicious way to foster your health. If you’re a regular meat eater, remember that of course a chickpea burger is not a hamburger! Think of them as a veggie-filled sandwich, that happens to be burger shaped, savory, and delicious. These chickpea burgers are full of flavor and also stays together on the bun. They take a bit of time to make, but are absolutely worth it and leftovers save well.

The sour cherry salsa is fantastic: lightly sweet and ultra tangy. It would also work wonderfully over fish, and leftovers from the recipe are perfect with tortilla chips. We paired the burger with a modest slather of spicy mayo, which is the perfect texture contrast to the salsa and chickpea burgers.

Related: Fresh Mango Salsa | Black Bean and Corn Salsa | Best Salsa Recipe

Chickpea Burgers with Sour Cherry Salsa

More with tart cherries

Montmorency tart cherries have been linked to several health benefits; and lucky for us, they’re incredibly delicious! We love them by the handful–and here are a few more recipes featuring this tasty fruit:

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This recipe is…

These chickpea burgers with sour cherry salsa are vegetarian, vegan, plant-based, dairy-free, naturally sweet, and refined sugar-free. For gluten-free: Use a gluten-free English muffin or bun, and gluten-free flour in the burger.

Chickpea Burgers with Sour Cherry Salsa
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Veggie Burgers with Tart Cherry Salsa | A Couple Cooks

Chickpea Burgers with Sour Cherry Salsa


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  • Author: a Couple Cooks
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x

Description

This chickpea burgers with sour cherry salsa recipe is a delicious plant based, healthy dinner idea that’s perfect for meatless Mondays.


Scale

Ingredients

For the chickpea burgers

  • 15-ounce can chickpeas (1½ cups cooked)
  • 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
  • 1 large carrot
  • ½ red onion
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • ½ cup cilantro leaves (or parsley)
  • 6 tablespoons flour of any type (gluten-free if necessary)
  • 3/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons grapeseed or vegetable oil (for frying)

For the tart cherry salsa

  • 1 cup dried Montmorency tart cherries
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 6 tablespoons lime juice (2 limes)
  • 1 cup chopped yellow bell pepper
  • 1 large jalapeno chile pepper
  • 1/2 cup minced red onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro, loosely packed
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

For serving

  • 1/4 cup vegan mayonnaise
  • 2 teaspoons Mexican hot sauce
  • 4 whole grain English muffins

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F.
  2. For the chickpea burgers: Drain and rinse the chickpeas. Dab the chickpeas with a paper towel to remove extra moisture, then place them in the bowl of a food processor. Add the sesame seeds, then process until a paste-like consistency is formed. Scrape the mixture into a bowl.
  3. Cut the carrot into rough chunks and peel the red onion and cut into chunks. Peel the garlic. Place the carrot, onion, garlic, and cilantro in the bowl of the food processor; pulse until finely ground. Scrape the vegetables into the bowl with the chickpeas.
  4. Stir in the flour, cumin, kosher salt, and black pepper. Mix with a spoon until combined, then form 4 round patties and place them on plate.
  5. In an ovenproof frying pan, heat 3 tablespoons oil over medium heat. Place the patties in the pan, cover, and fry them about 4 to 5 minutes until golden brown, then flip and fry for another 4 to 5 minutes until browned, turning down the heat as necessary. Place the pan in the oven and bake the patties for 15 minutes. Remove the patties from the oven and let them cool for at least 15 minutes to firm up.
  6. For the sour cherry salsa: Meanwhile, roughly chop the tart cherries. Place them in a bowl with the lime juice and maple syrup. Chop the bell pepper. Remove the seeds and ribs, and mince the jalapeno pepper (taking care when handling). Mince the red onion. Finely chop the cilantro. Add all ingredients the bowl and stir to combine. Let stand at room temperature until serving.
  7. Mix together the mayonnaise and hot sauce. Toast the English muffins.
  8. To serve, place the chickpea burgers on the English muffins, and spread the tops of the muffins with spicy mayo. Top with sour cherry salsa and serve. Eat any leftover salsa with chips.

  • Category: Main Dish
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: Chickpea Burgers, Sour Cherry Salsa, Meatless Dinner, Healthy Dinner Ideas, Vegetarian, Vegan, Vegan Dinner Ideas, Healthy Dinner

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About the Authors

Sonja Overhiser

Cookbook Author and writer

Sonja Overhiser is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best healthy cookbooks of 2018. She’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the food blog A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.

Alex Overhiser

Cookbook Author and photographer

Alex Overhiser is an acclaimed food photographer and author based in Indianapolis. He’s host of the food podcast Small Bites and founder of the recipe website A Couple Cooks. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Alex is author of Pretty Simple Cooking, named one of the best vegetarian cookbooks by Epicurious.

11 Comments

  • Reply
    Kelsey @ Appeasing a Food Geek
    June 14, 2017 at 7:04 am

    These burgers look divine! I’ve never made veggie burgers myself, but I think I need to change that… Also I love the use of the salsa. So refreshing! And tart cherries have become my jam–great highlights on their health benefits. (PS I love seeing the little windows into your family! I can’t stop smiling when I see the photos!) xoxo

    • Reply
      Sonja
      June 17, 2017 at 4:42 pm

      Homemade veggie burgers can be challenging, but we found this recipe to be one of our faves! And agree on tart cherries…we are cherry addicts over here — a good thing to be addicted to :) Thanks so much about the family comment too — we’re having such fun with our little guy!

  • Reply
    Abby @ Heart of a Baker
    June 14, 2017 at 10:03 am

    I bet it’s such a joy to introduce Larson to all the members of your family, he’s the CUTEST! I never would have thought to top my veggie burgers with cherries, but this looks like a perfect idea :)

    • Reply
      Sonja
      June 17, 2017 at 4:41 pm

      Ahh thank you about Larson! Yes, cherry salsa is unique but it adds an interesting twist to veggie burgers. Thanks so much!

  • Reply
    Kelli @ Hungry Hobby
    June 14, 2017 at 9:03 pm

    I love tart cherries they are the best to add a zing of flavor to anything! I love them in granola bars recently but can’t wait to try this!

    • Reply
      Sonja
      June 17, 2017 at 4:40 pm

      Same over here! I find myself going at them by the handful…but we love inventing recipes for them too! Let us know if you try it.

  • Reply
    Genevieve Crum
    June 15, 2017 at 6:59 am

    A few of my friends and I have been wanting to cook a cherry-themed dinner to celebrate the start of cherry season here in northern Italy, and this was the perfect recipe! The burgers were absolutely delicious and the salsa has become my new favorite fruit salsa recipe (although maybe I’m biased because of my deep love for all things cherry haha).

    • Reply
      Sonja
      June 17, 2017 at 4:38 pm

      So glad you enjoyed this recipe! Did you use dried cherries for the salsa or do they have fresh ones in Italy?

      • Reply
        Genevieve Crum
        June 18, 2017 at 6:10 am

        They actually only have fresh ones here so we dried them out a bit in the oven and then used them that way! But I also love dried cherries when I can get them at home!

  • Reply
    Garner
    June 17, 2017 at 6:52 am

    Awesome burger. I like this burger.

  • Reply
    Elise Ho
    June 19, 2017 at 4:33 am

    The tart cherry salsa fascinates me. I think I will have it on my next veggie burger.

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