High Protein Black Bean Burgers Recipe with Protein Waffle Fries
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Having one of the pickiest eaters in the world under my roof means I’m constantly looking for ways to come up with alternatives for unhealthy or higher calorie meals. In this case, burgers are on the approved foods list but as I’m sure you know, they can be dangerous in the calorie department. One way I like to put a healthier spin on burgers is by adding black beans to bump up the volume — more food with fewer calories — of the meal. These also make the approved foods list, but I’m always pushing the limits and looking for ways to add more protein to recipes. That’s what you’re looking at today. These high protein black bean burgers have nearly 10 extra grams of protein than my regular black bean burgers recipe. And even better, the picky eaters will never know.
This recipe makes 6 burgers, but you could easily double the recipe or make smaller burgers to make meals for the entire week or have an even lower calorie meal option. That is if you can stop with just one.
Ingredients for High Protein Black Bean Burgers
I’ve calculated the macros and calories using 93/7 ground turkey, but you can use any ground meat you like. Normally I mention how draining and rinsing ground meat as it cooks can remove up to half the fat, taking 85/15 closer to 93/7. This saves calories and money. But in this case, it’s a bit harder to drain fat from burgers so this is probably a time to go with a leaner cut.
For the beans, the servings may look a bit confusing in the directions — just use 1/2 a 15.25 ounce can.
You’ll notice I used unflavored protein powder in addition to an egg as a binder. You will typically see breadcrumbs or oats used here, so we’re saving carbs and upping the protein! For the protein powder, I used Now Sports Whey Concentrate unflavored.
If you don’t want to use protein powder or don’t have any on hand, you could use breadcrumbs, flour, or shredded cheese like parmesan. The shredded cheese actually works quite well and keeps the recipe lower in carbs.
If you’re hesitant to buy unflavored protein for the fear of not using it outside of this recipe, know that you can easily flavor it with stevia, cocoa powder, and other sweeteners. Most of my recipes call for vanilla protein powder and end up as totally non-vanilla dishes. Here are a few recipes I’ve made recently with unflavored protein:
- Waffle Fries and Garlic Parmesan Fries
- Cheesy Garlic Bread Sticks
- Chili Cheese Tots
- Buffalo Cauliflower Wings
Bun Selection and How to Make Cauliflower Buns
In the recipe, you’ll see Flatout Foldits. If you’ve never had these, they’re phenomenal! But as you can probably tell from my photos, I couldn’t find them in Target and opted for a lower calorie hamburger bun. I know Kroger carries all the Flatout products but if you have trouble finding them, going with a bun comparable in calories (100) will be fine.
There’s also the possibility of going with something like my high protein cauliflower buns. With 117 calories, 15 grams of protein, and only 3 ingredients, I think you’ll dig these. Click here for the recipe.
High Protein Black Bean Burgers
Black bean burgers with a higher protein twist.
- 1 lb 93% Lean Ground Turkey or extra lean ground beef/ground chicken
- 1 scoop (33g) Protein Powder unflavored
- 7/8 C (227g) Canned Black Beans drained, rinsed (1/2 a 15oz can)
- 1 large Egg
- 1-2 tsp Salt and Pepper or your choice of seasoning
- 6 slices Fat-Free American Cheese Slices or other low fat cheese
- 6 Flatout Foldits or 100-calorie hamburger buns
Mix protein powder, an egg, black beans, and seasoning in a large bowl.
Add ground turkey or meat of choice, stirring with hands or rubber spatula until evenly mixed.
Heat a large griddle or two skillets over low-medium heat. Spray with low-cal nonstick cooking spray.
Using your hands, form 6 patties with your meat mixture. Start with a palm-sized portion for evenly sized burgers.
Add patties to skillet and leave untouched for 5-7 minutes or until the bottoms are fully cooked and sides have begun to brown. Flip and cook for 5-7 additional minutes. (Your patties should be cooked through but not burned. You can always cut into your thickest patty to test.)
Towards the end of cook time, add cheese slices to each patty.
Toast the Foldits or buns on the skillet or in a toaster oven and enjoy!
Per Burger with Foldit (makes 6): 308 Calories | 32P | 27C | 8F
You can’t have high protein black bean burgers without fries. Check out my high protein waffle fries recipe if you haven’t already. One serving of these with a burger and 2 Tbsp of reduced sugar ketchup will only run you around 470 calories.
And that’s it! I hope you enjoy. If you try this recipe — or any recipe on my site — tag me in your creation on Instagram. I’ll be sure to share it with everyone.
Before you go, I have a quick question. Do you love chocolate?
Of course you do, and that’s why I put together a free cookbook just for chocolate lovers. You can learn more about it here or enter your info below to download it for free. Enjoy!