Vegan Burgers: Mushroom Pecan Sliders

I had some fun facebook this morning, playing a guessing game with this photo.  And, Dana quickly identified them as my “Mushroom Pecan Burgers, Take II” from LTEV.

Why ‘take II’?  I first created this recipe for my first cookbook, The Everyday Vegan.  They were delicious, but a touch delicate and best suited for stuffing inside a pita then taking their rightful place inside a burger bun.  For LTEV, I decided to reinvent them, making them firmer, more savory, and also giving a wheat free and gluten-free option.

Most recently I made them into ‘sliders’ for Father’s Day.  Hubby loves these burgers, and I usually make them for his birthday or Father’s Day – or both!  Now, some of you very observant readers might think you see some grains of rice in there.  Indeed you do – can’t get anything past you!  I had some leftover brown rice in the fridge, and so decided to substitute some of the oats with about 1 cup of rice, to use up the rice (and also stretch out the mix a little).  It worked beautifully, and I would add it again if on hand.  I wouldn’t replace all the oats with brown rice (as the oats help to absorb moisture), but a partial substitution worked well.

Also, if try my “Almonnaise” as an oil-free substitute to vegan mayonnaise!  It’s on page 55 of LTEV (and I hope to upload a YouTube clip for it soon).

Mushroom Pecan Burgers, Take II gluten-free option, oil-free option

1 tbsp olive oil (omit for oil-free version and use just 1 tsp water)

1 lb brown (cremini) mushrooms (ends of stems trimmed), chopped (cremini have more flavor than white button mushrooms, but white mushrooms can also be used)

Freshly ground black pepper

1 ¼ cups onion, diced

couple pinches sea salt

3 – 4 large cloves garlic, minced

1 tbsp balsamic vinegar

2 – 2 ½ tbsps tahini

1 tbsp light miso (ex: brown rice)

½ tsp ground sage

1 tsp dried oregano

1 1/2 tbsps balsamic vinegar

1 tbsp tamari

1 ¾ cups rolled oats (use certified gluten-free for that option)

1/2 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves

1 tsp vegan worcestershire sauce (optional, omit for wheat-free/gluten-free version)

½ cup pecans, lightly toasted (see note)

In a large skillet (as large as you have) over high heat, combine the oil, mushrooms, and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms have started to brown and shrink down (9 to 10 minutes). Push most of the mushrooms to the outer edges of the skillet (creating a well in the center), turn the heat down to medium or medium-low, and add the onion and salt. Cook for a couple of minutes, then add the garlic (adding the garlic later helps prevent it from burning). Stir the mushrooms into the onion mixture and cook for another 6 to 7 minutes, until the onion is softened and translucent. Add the 1 tablespoon of the balsamic vinegar to the pan, stir, and then remove from the heat.  In a food processor, combine about three-quarters of the mushroom mixture with the tahini, miso, sage, oregano, the remaining 11⁄2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar, and the tamari, oats, fresh parsley, and Worcestershire sauce (if using). Process until it just comes together. Add the pecans, pulse once or twice (to break up but not fully process), and then add the remaining mushroom mixture, pulsing once or twice just to incorporate.  Remove the blade, and shape mounds of the mixture into patties with your hands (yielding six, or five larger patties). The patties can be refrigerated or cooked immediately. To cook, place on a nonstick skillet over medium or medium-high heat and cook the patties for 6 to 8 minutes, then flip and cook for another 4 to 5 minutes until a golden sear has formed on each side, working in batches, if necessary. (To oven-bake, place patties on baking sheet lined with parchment paper.  Bake at 400 degrees, for roughly 10 minutes on one side, then flipping and baking another 10 minutes.) Serve up!  Makes 5 to 6 patties.

Serving Suggestions: Because these burgers take a little more prep than others, pair with the simplest of spuds, such as baked whole sweet or white potatoes. But if you’re up to just a little more prep, try Lemon Dijon Green Beans or Sunshine Fries with Rosemary and Coarse Sea Salt. A green salad will round out the meal and add freshness; try one loaded with raw veggies and drizzled with Walnut Mustard Vinaigrette.

Toasting Nuts:  To toast nuts, place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.  Place in oven preheated to 400 degrees, and bake for 7 to 12 minutes, tossing once or twice through the baking process to distribute through evenly during cooking.  Watch carefully as toasting times vary by nut, and they can turn from golden to burned in just seconds.

Thanks to Ricki Heller for including this recipe in her Wellness Weekend round-up!

Link to RECIpage to share/print!


  1. Amarpal Virdee says

    Hi – I would love to make these for my 4 year old boy Jeevan who was recently confirmed as celiac. I know you can get gluten free oats but my dietician has said we should stay clear of these in the first year as they have a protein in oats that have a similar property to gluten.

    Any suggestions on how to make the above without oats? Anything else I can sub in?

    Thanks in advance

    • Dreena says

      Hello Amarpal, you could try buying GF breadcrumbs – or making crumbs out of the GF bread you eat – and then substituting those for the oats. You may need a little extra since oats are very absorbent. Also, a friend of mine passed along info about this company: They have oat products branded PrOatina™, and apparently they are very low in the avenin peptide that cause allergic reactions. Thought I’d pass it along to you if you want to look into that option too. Good luck.

  2. Charise says

    I have made these delicious burgers 3 x since I saw it here. They are the best tasting , moist, savory delights ever! I love my veggie burgers & these are going to be a crowd pleaser! Vegans all over have to try these & meat eaters will love them & might be fooled by the way they look! I processed them , made patties & baked them in the oven . I’m in love – can ya tell? Thanks!

  3. Kirsten Ness says

    Hi Dreena,

    I would like to try these burgers, but my IBS won’t let me have onions and garlic! This leaves me with a major conundrum! I usually substitute carrots and a bit of celery, or some zucchini for the ‘bulk’ that onions provide, and either chives or the green part of green onions, and a pinch of garlic powder for the flavour. Obviously this is a major substitution in this recipe! Since you’ve had the burgers, in your opinion, would carrots, celery or zucchini (or a combo) be the best bet flavour wise, or is this recipe just best not to use since it’s so onion ‘heavy’!

    Thanks for any advice you can offer!

  4. Barbara Jansen says

    I made this once before and my anti-vegan son actually said that he liked them. I have not made them since then mostly because my husband is not a big fan of any vegan burger but coincidentally my daughter-in-law who was also over the day I made them mentioned that they were one of her favorite things that I have made since becoming Vegan. I guess I will be making them again soon sometime. Another thing that is good is that it is one of the only burger recipes that I found that doesn’t need beans which one of my daughters is allergic to.

  5. lauren says

    Just made these again tonight. Of all the veggie burger recipes I have tried, this is the only one my husband has liked. Thanks so much!

  6. noelle says

    Just made these , served with millet and cashew cheese… subbed regular oats for quick oats and coconut oil for olive oil and they were absolutely delicious! Thank you so much for the recipe!

  7. Melissa Chapman says

    I made these burgers (slider-sized) last weekend for my mushroom-hating, nut-allergic sister-in-law – with a change. I subbed pepitas and sunflower seeds for the pecans. She loved them. And my daughter, who is leaving for college in 2 weeks has requested that I make some for her to keep in her freezer when she’s away. These burgers are a hit in my house!

  8. Tiffany says

    Hi Dreena,

    I love your blog and all of your cookbooks! I just made your passion peanut sauce and it was divine drizzled on brown rice, broccoli, carrots, mushrooms and tofu.

    I want to make your Raspberry Cornmeal Pancakes this week. Unfortunately I don’t have vanilla soy milk in the house or raspberries.

    Can I substitute unsweetened almond milk? (maybe add a little vanilla extract and some sugar? How much would you suggest of each?) I assume blueberries would work just as well as raspberries?

    I am so sorry, but my aunt is allergic to flax meal and I would love to make these for her as she is gluten intolerant. (I would be using GF oats). Can I substitute anything for the flax?

    Thank you so much!

  9. jennP says

    i just tried these tonight!! i absolutely loved them!! I have SOOOO not ever been disappointed with your recipes Dreena!! Sometimes I am rather nervous tasting some new recipes… but I am never afraid when I taste yours. I have yet to try one I didn’t like!
    My daughter snuck into the kitchen as I was making them, she had just finished her supper. She snuck a taste of the dough and begged me to have one when they were ready! She is quite a particular eater (doesn’t like mixed foods much- she prefers eveything separately.) I can’t wait to see if she will love them as much as I do!
    My only regret??? that i didn’t double the recipe!!

    • Dreena says

      Thank you Jenn!! What a bright light in my morning to read this, thank you. I had read something kind of discouraging this morning, and you have picked up my mood. :) I hope you know how much it means to a cook/author to receive this kind of feedback about a recipe. It’s like a big warm hug!!! And, I love that your daughter was into the mix – it’s not entirely ‘mellow’ for kids, so that’s a big plus! Thanks for the cheer!

  10. Rebecca says

    The only thing I’d add is that it’s much easier to shape the patties if your hands are a little damp, so the mixture doesn’t stick to them. And I love how they don’t stick to the pan at all! So good. Now I just have to resist eating them all myself!

    • Dreena says

      Great point Rebecca, thanks for mentioning that – it *can* be a bit of a sticky process! And, I say eat ’em all!!! 😉

  11. Rebecca says

    Oh, yum! In a minor miracle, I saw Dreena’s Facebook posting, just happened to have all the ingredients and a clean food processor in my now Dreena Burton-friendly kitchen, and whipped up a batch of these in no time! Delicious! I am reminded of a post I recently read of how to answer when someone asks, “Why do vegans want everything to taste like meat?” – The answer: “Why do meat eaters want their meat to taste like plants?” After all, they rarely eat just a hunk of raw, bloody flesh; instead they cook it, douse it in ketchup, mustard, pickle, onion, bbq sauce, and eat it on a grain bun! So, for those omnivores and we vegans, this burger fits the bill admirably.

    • Dreena says

      Rebecca, I talked about very same at Summerfest, that it’s about the seasonings, herbs, aromatics, sauces, dressings, and marinades we use in food (meat included) that make it taste amazing! And, yes, how many people eat a burger without bbq sauce, or any of those condiments – you said it!!

  12. Ellery says

    These look great! Love that they can be oil free and refined sugars free!
    Just a question: I can’t seem to find the Note for the toasted pecans. How do you recommend doing this? Thanks!

  13. Tiffany says

    These are my favorite burgers!! Dreena, I love your book. Thank you so much for such lovely and delicious recipes. I am looking forward to making your citrus scented almond muffins this weekend! I hope you have a wonderful Friday and weekend with your family :)

    • Tiffany says

      By the way, I also want to make your raspberry cornmeal pancakes this weekend too. I bought corn meal from the whole foods bulk bins..I’m not sure if it is fine grain. Can I put it into my blender and give it a finer texture? Would that work in the recipe?

      Is polenta (the small yellow looking pieces) the same as cornmeal.

      Thank you Dreena!

      • Dreena says

        Oh, cornmeal is SO varied, it’s confusing isn’t it? Well, if you’ve seen ‘Bob’s Red Mill corn flour’, that’s the consistency that will work best in the pancakes. Here’s a link if it helps at all: Polenta is sometimes called cornmeal, but there is coarser grain cornmeal and then finely ground cornmeal which is like a flour – but a little more textured/heavy, a coarse flour. That make sense?? And… giving it a buzz in the blender is a great idea!

    • Dreena says

      Tiffany, you always leave such kind feedback. Thank you! I think you’ll love those muffins, they have been a hit when I’ve made them for others. Wishing you a beautiful weekend too!

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