Our search for the perfect veggie burger recipe has been going on for years now—we don't always want meat, but we also don't want bland frozen patties; black bean mush that falls apart as soon as we pick it up; or a gigantic bite of an oily, half-cooked mushroom. These nine veg-heavy (and in some cases, vegan or gluten-free) burgers are as close to perfect as we've found, and they're all as satisfying to sink your teeth into as the real thing. Pro tip: Make double batches of these recipes and store in the freezer to use when you’re feeling lazy.

Mushroom Zucchini Burger

An earthy combination of mushrooms, zucchini, and soy sauce mingle with ground sunflower seeds and oat flour in this gluten-free and vegan burger. The accompanying mustard sauce cuts through the rich burger with notes of sweet tomato and acidic apple cider vinegar.

Roasted Zucchini Burger

We saw the words “garlic whipped feta” and nearly cried tears of joy. Of course, it’s not all about that creamy Greek yogurt and cheese sauce (well, maybe it kind of is... ), but just picture how tasty it must be smeared over a roasted yellow squash and zucchini burger. We’re heading to the store right now.

Beet and Feta Burger

Imagine how satisfying it would be to bite into this incredible magenta burger—just maybe don’t wear a white shirt. Bursting with creamy feta and handful of fresh basil, these potassium-rich beet burgers are a killer addition to any barbecue spread.

Sweet Potato and Tofu Burger

Mash sweet potatoes with tofu and a dollop of tahini for a burger that’s just the right balance of sweet and nutty. We think it sounds like a perfect winter burger, but we also won't tell if you make a batch for a summer supper.

Green Chile Burger

Bursting with protein from their chickpea base, these spicy green chile burgers are bound to become a weekly staple. Use crushed yellow corn tortilla chips instead of flour to offset the moisture from the chiles and chickpeas. The best part? These burgers come together in 30 minutes!

Chickpea and Cauliflower Veggie Burger

Blend Old Bay seasoning into a mixture of mild chickpeas and cauliflower for a burger that’s reminiscent of your favorite crab cake—but packed with veggies and protein. If you don’t have time to make the vegan mayo, add a squeeze of lemon to your favorite jarred version.

Spicy Cauliflower Burger

Pepper jack cheese gets cozy with cauliflower and cooked quinoa in these spicy burgers. Try your favorite mild nut flour instead of breadcrumbs if you’re avoiding gluten, and serve with chopped fresh cilantro and crunchy purple cabbage.

Vegan Lentil Burger

Bite into these four-ingredient burgers and we bet any yearning for beef will subside. Cook plant protein-rich lentils (we recommend using the mild brown type) and blend with raisins, walnuts, and breadcrumbs. The result? A substantial burger with a just touch of sweetness.

Sweet Potato Black Bean Burger

Pair protein-heavy black beans with roasted sweet potato, quinoa or millet, and oats in this vegan and gluten-free burger. Flavored with a rich spice mixture of cumin, chili powder, and cayenne, these patties are just as tasty when served classically on a bun as they are over a bed of lettuce smothered in your favorite burger toppings

Originally published July 2016. Updated May 2017.

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