Veggie burgers with pumpkin make a satisfying, protein-packed, and super flavorful dinner. Top with a slice of tomato and a swipe of mustard–they don’t need much more–and you have a scrumptious replacement for meat or those ubiquitous, crumbly, vegan burgers.

Adapted from Hannah Kaminsky | The Student Vegan Cookbook | Harvard Common Press, 2021

Burgers are one of the most reliable staples to be found in any cook’s arsenal. They are infinitely adjustable, easily prepared, and universally enjoyed, and many satisfying meals both past and present can be attributed to the humble patty.–Hannah Kaminsky


Cooked and cooled patties can be frozen in an airtight container for up to 6 months. If you make a big batch to freeze for easy and quick dinners, put a sheet of parchment paper between them before freezing. Then you can grab just one any time you need a burger fix. Let them thaw first for best results.

A veggie pumpkin burger on a brioche bun with lettuce, tomato, and mustard on a plate with slices of watermelon.

Veggie Burgers with Pumpkin

5 from 1 vote
Pumpkin purée is the secret ingredient holding these particular patties together in this crowd-pleasing chickpea and protein powder-packed formula.
Servings4 to 6 burgers
Calories330 kcal
Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time30 minutes
Total Time45 minutes


For the pumpkin patties

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 cup diced onion
  • 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 can (14 ounce) chickpeas drained
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin purée
  • 1 tablespoon yellow mustard
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 cup plain, unsweetened vegan protein powder or oat flour
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

To serve


Make the pumpkin patties

  • In a medium skillet over medium heat, warm 1 tablespoon olive oil. When shimmering, add garlic and onion, and sauté until aromatic and lightly golden brown, 6 to 7 minutes.
  • Stir in balsamic vinegar, scraping the bottom of the pan to loosen browned bits. Remove from heat and let cool for about 10 minutes.
  • In a separate bowl, use a fork or potato masher to roughly mash chickpeas. You want to keep the texture fairly coarse so that the burger maintains a satisfying bite. Add pumpkin purée, mustard, cumin, oregano, and protein powder or oat flour, mix well to incorporate.
  • Add sautéed vegetables and mix thoroughly, making sure there are no pockets of dry ingredients remaining. The mixture should be soft but manageable, something you can easily mold into patties that will hold their shape. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
  • Measure out between 1/3 to 1/2 cup (80 to 120 g) of burger mixture for each patty, and form into round, flat pucks with slightly moistened hands. You should get 4 to 6 burgers.
  • Clean and dry skillet before returning it to the stove over medium heat. Heat remaining tablespoon of oil.
  • Add two or three patties to the skillet and cook, without disturbing them, until golden, reducing the heat if necessary to avoid burning, about 8 minutes. Flip and cook on second side until golden, 5 to 8 minutes more. Move to a plate and repeat with remaining patties.
  • To serve, spread mustard on bottom buns and top with layers of sliced tomatoes, the patties, and a few arugula leaves, finish with top bun.
The Student Vegan Cookbook

Adapted From

The Student Vegan Cookbook

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Serving: 1 servingCalories: 330 kcalCarbohydrates: 41 gProtein: 19 gFat: 11 gSaturated Fat: 2 gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2 gMonounsaturated Fat: 6 gCholesterol: 23 mgSodium: 390 mgPotassium: 268 mgFiber: 3 gSugar: 8 gVitamin A: 4815 IUVitamin C: 6 mgCalcium: 185 mgIron: 4 mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Tried this recipe?Mention @leitesculinaria or tag #leitesculinaria!
Recipe © 2021 Hannah Kaminsky. Photo © 2021 Hannah Kaminsky. All rights reserved.

Recipe Testers’ Reviews

Veggie burgers with pumpkin are an easy-to-pull-together healthy and flavorful dinner option. They’d work well at a build-your-own burger bar, flavorful enough on their own but could also pair well with caramelized onions, barbecue sauce, etc. The mixture was easy to work with and I formed 4 medium-sized patties that held their shape. Next time I’m going to try baking them in the oven so I don’t have to stand over them as they cook.

Finding an interesting combination that leads to a terrific vegan burger was just what I needed today. Thank you, Leite’s Culinaria! The ingredients were intriguing–pumpkin and garbanzo beans? Food for thought and so I jumped right in. The preparation was straightforward, the list of ingredients not too lengthy or rarified, and yet the combination of the sautéed onions and garlic, deglazed with balsamic vinegar, pumpkin, and mashed garbanzos married beautifully. The addition of oregano, cumin, salt, pepper, and mustard just all worked.

They came together easily, forming 6 nice-sized 1/3 cup patties. Not being a bun eater, I served these veggie burgers with pumpkin on a salad platter of spinach, arugula, sliced tomatoes, cucumbers, and fresh pineapple. A classic coleslaw complemented the burgers. Yummy, buttery croissant breadsticks were offered to those who wished. A spread of German mustard worked well, along with Frank’s Hot Sauce. As an aside, mini-burgers would be a great little side or a children’s treat. These now top my veggie burger list.

Originally published September 3, 2021

About David Leite

David Leite has received three James Beard Awards for his writing as well as for Leite’s Culinaria. His work has appeared in The New York Times, Martha Stewart Living, Saveur, Bon Appétit, Gourmet, Food & Wine, Yankee, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, The Washington Post, and more.

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    1. Lee, we didn’t try it with beans in place of the chickpeas, so we can’t say for certain, but given that beans typically work well in veggie burgers, I think it would work. If you try it, do let us know how it turns out.