May is National Hamburger Month, and Memorial Day weekend is often regarded as the unofficial start of summer (aka grilling season). What better way to celebrate this time of year than with an ode to the veggie burger? Veggie burgers are versatile, easy to prepare, and SO much healthier than their meaty counterparts.


Veggie burger benefits:

Have you ever wondered about the true price of a cheeseburger? The human, environmental and animal impacts are astonishing.


Health: While most hamburgers are high in artery-clogging saturated fat and cholesterol, veggie burgers are made of healthy ingredients like vegetables, quinoa, lentilsbeans, brown rice and other grains. Most veggie versions still supply plenty of protein, but unlike meat, also give you plant-powered fiber and antioxidants!


Environment: Animal agriculture is a greater contributor to global warming than transportation. And due to their high methane output, cattle are one of the worst offenders of all farmed animals.


Animal agriculture also uses enormous quantities of water, monopolizes land that could be more productive for crops, and contributes to deforestation of critical rainforest and other habitats.


Meanwhile, veggie burger staple crops such as beans, grains and vegetables can be grown cleanly and efficiently.


Ethics: Resources are scarce, and animal agriculture’s footprint on the earth is unacceptably large. Study after study shows we can feed more people on a plant-based diet than on a Western diet that includes meat, eggs and other dairy products.


Animal products are also more expensive than plant foods. With nearly 15 percent of American households considered “food insecure” shouldn’t we be seeking more cost-effective ways to feed ourselves? Efficiency is just one of many benefits of a plant-based diet…or a plant-based burger!


Variety: A burger is a burger, right? Well not with veggie versions! The base for most commercially prepared veggie burgers is soy protein or wheat gluten, although there are also a few rice and vegetable-based options. But when you make your own, you can customize the list of ingredients, and the combinations are only limited by your imagination.


The compilation of recipes below speaks to the versatility and adaptability of the veggie burger. From beans to broccoli, there’s something here for everyone!


10 must-try veggie burger recipes:

Got an awesome veggie burger recipe? Share it with us in the comments below!


This story was written for One Green Planet and is reprinted with permission here. One Green Planet is your online guide to making conscious choices that help people, animals and the planet. To learn more, visit the site, subscribe to the feed and join the growing community on FacebookTwitter and Pinterest.