Vegan San Antonio Bean Burger
Beans, Cheez-Whiz and Fritos on a Burger? You're DARN TOOTIN!
I've recently been watching a lot of George Motz's videos, he's THEE hamburger historian and he loves to show all the different burgers that the US has to offer. They are usually very simple and unique, which is probably my favorite kind of burger, and this burger from San Antonio Texas fits the bill!
If you've never put Fritos, Beans and Cheese on a burger, you're in for a treat. And if you have, well then you know you're in for a treat!
Let's Talk Beans
This is really a recipe for Refried Beans and Cheese Sauce. You can use storebought beans if you like, whether it's already refried, or if they are whole pinto beans, it's quite easy to turn them into refried beans as well. Just mash them up, use some of the bean juice to help with the texture, and season to your liking.
Personally, I think it's worth the extra time to make the beans from scratch. Not only do they taste way better, but you'll have a bunch leftover for the rest of the week!
I start by soaking dry pinto beans over night. You don't need to soak, but it'll take longer to cook 'em. I've never actually made them on the stove top because I use my Instant Pot, which I highly recommend, it will cut the cooking time down by at least half if not more. I've never made them on the stove top, but you basically just need to cook them until they are soft. I don't have any recipes to suggest but I'm sure there's a bunch on the old interweb if you need to cook them this way!
Also, as far as the texture is concerned, you can mash these to your desired consistency! I use a potato masher at first, and then I'll make them extra smooth with an immersion blender, but do whatever you like!
For the seasonings, you can really do whatever! This is simply the way I like to make my beans, so take the measurements with a grain of salt (but don't skimp on the salt, nothing worse than bland beans!)
For more info on how to make beans from scratch check out this LINK.
Let's talk cheez whiz
The only note I'd leave for the Cheez Whiz is I highly recommend grating your own cheese instead of using the pre-grated kind. I've found the texture to be way better. I use the Daiya Cheddar blocks.
Here's a video for the Burger!
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Makes 1 Burger with a lot of leftover beans and cheese!
3 - 4 oz plant based meat
1 cup of Fritos (lightly crushed)
1 burger bun
1 pound dry pinto beans
2 bay leaves
5 cloves garlic
1 onion (diced)
1 jalapeño (diced)
1/3 cup crisco (or oil)
1/2 Tbsp salt (more to taste)
1 Tbsp chipotle in adobo
1/2 tsp cumin
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp smoked paprika
2 Tbsp mushroom seasoning
8 oz vegan cheese (grated)
1/4 cup vegan butter
1/4 cup flour
2 cups plant-milk (unsweetened)
Salt to taste
Turmeric for color
(for the Refried Beans)
Sort through your beans to make sure there's no rocks or weird looking beans. Discard them if you do find any!
Soak your beans in room temperature water overnight (8-10 hours). Make sure to cover them so there's at least 2 inches of water above the beans as they will expand quite a bit as they rehydrate.
Drain your beans and add them to the Instant Pot. Cover with 6 cups of water, 2 bay leaves and 5 whole peeled garlic cloves.
Cook on high pressure for 30 minutes. Natural release for 10 - 15 minutes.
In a large pot, add 1/3 cup of crisco and let it melt. Then add in your diced onion and jalapeño and cook for about 8 minutes or until the onions are translucent.
Using a slotted spoon or spider, add your beans into the pan. Stir to combine with the onions and pepper.
Add in the rest of the seasonings and stir to combine.
Using a potato masher, mash up your beans to your desired consistency. If you want them extra smooth you can use an immersion blender too.
If the beans are too thick (which they probably will be) add in about a cup of the bean water from the Instant Pot and stir. Add more bean water until you get your desired consistency. Taste for seasoning and adjust, then set aside on low heat.
(for the Cheez Whiz)
I highly recommend grating your own cheese, I've found the texture to be far superior.
To make the Cheez Whiz, melt butter in a pan over medium heat.
Add flour a tablespoon at a time and whisk in between each tablespoon. Once all flour has been added whisk thoroughly and cook for 1 minute.
Add plant milk 1/2 cup at a time and whisk in between each 1/2 cup. Bring to a simmer.
Add vegan cheese and stir until melted.
Add salt and adjust to taste. Feel free to season how you like! Add some tumeric for color if you want.
Once cheese is where you want it, lower the heat and cover to keep warm.
(to make the BURGER!)
Toast your burger buns until golden brown.
Form or smash your 3-4 oz of plant based meat into a patty and cook in a pan at medium heat for 3-4 minutes per side.
Assemble the burger as shown and ENJOY!