Vegan Sweet Potato Burger with Chickpeas & Spinach

January 8, 2022

Before we discuss my favorite new recipe, vegan sweet potato burger, I want to talk about the key ingredient; sweet potatoes.

If you are an active member of our health and wellness community, you have probably heard me speak of the health benefits of sweet potatoes a few times. But it is worth repeating because they are a true superfood.

Here are my top 5 favorite reasons to consume more sweet potatoes and I recommend 3-5 servings a week.

  1. Sweet potatoes are high in vitamin B6, vitamin E and an excellent source of vitamin C. Vitamin B6 can impact your mood, your sleep, and your pain levels. B6 is often depleted by stress. If you don't replace your B6 with the right food, anxiety and stress can worsen. So if you have a lot of pressure in your life, I highly recommend lots of sweet potatoes.
  2. Sweet potatoes are a good source of iron, potassium, and manganese. Manganese is often called the anti-stress mineral and manganese-rich foods can help a person feel calmer
  3. Sweet potatoes do not cause sugar spikes. Although most calories in sweet potatoes come from carbs, they are low-glycemic carbs and rich in fiber, which helps with blood sugar control.
  4. Sweet potatoes are high in carotenoids. Beta-carotene, lycopene, and lutein are all different varieties of carotenoids in sweet potatoes. They all act as antioxidants with potent chronic disease fighting properties and protect cells from free radicals.
  5. Last but not least. Sweet potatoes are the fountain of youth! The people from Okinawa have a life expectancy among the highest in the world, and 27% of their diet consists of sweet potatoes.

If you are asking yourself how are you going to eat 3-5 servings of sweet potatoes a week?  There are many ways to consume them.  Like this vegan sweet potato burger which will go down as one of my favorite new recipes.

Or keep it simple. Just peel, cut and roast the potato chunks in the oven until they are soft and caramelized for extra sweetness. Or cut into wedges, toss with some seasoning and bake to make sweet potato fries.

Also, don't feel like you always have to use the same spices for this vegan sweet potato burger. Switch it up. You could create an Asian inspired version by adding garlic, ginger, basil and soy sauce.

Try Mexican flavors, by adding some oregano, cilantro, cumin and chili powder. That selection of spices would taste delicious topped with a roasted poblano pepper.

So anything goes.

If you love this vegan sweet potato burger recipe as much as I did, I know you will enjoy my Twice-Baked Stuffed Sweet Potato with Cashew Cream and this Chickpea Stew with Sweet Potatoes, Spinach, Lemon and Roasted Red Pepper Puree. 

Thanks for joining me today and I hope you enjoy today's plant-based recipe.

If you try this recipe, please let me know!  Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo #ordinaryvegan on Instagram.

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Vegan Sweet Potato Burger with Chickpeas & Spinach Recipe

Vegan Sweet Potato Burger with Chickpeas & Spinach
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Swap out the beef for one of the healthiest foods on earth - sweet potatoes.
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: Southwestern
Serves: 4
  • 1½ pounds sweet potatoes
  • 1 cup drained, rinsed cooked chickpeas
  • 2 tablespoons Vegan Worcestershire sauce
  • 4 tablespoons aquafaba liquid (liquid from the cooked chickpeas)
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 cups spinach (lightly blanched or sautéed - water squeezed out)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped scallions, white part
  • 1 teaspoon paprika (sweet or smoked)
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • Fresh ground black pepper
  • Light sprinkle of red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 1½ cups of garbanzo bean flour (aka chickpea flour)
  • ½ cup Panko bread crumbs (or more if needed)
  • 1 teaspoon of extra-virgin olive oil to keep from sticking to saute pan or non-stick saute pan
  1. Pre-heat oven to 450 degrees f. Wash an scrub sweet potatoes, poke a few holes in the skin and place on a baking sheet
  2. Cook until soft about 45-55 minutes. Skin sweet potatoes when cooled, and place into the food processor.
  3. Add all the other ingredients to the food processor except for the garbanzo bean flour and bread crumbs and process until smooth.
  4. Remove the mixture to a large bowl and mix in the garbanzo bean flour.
  5. Add the gluten-free panko breadcrumbs and combine. Adding more breadcrumbs if still too sticky. Form into 4-6 patties.
  6. Spray a large non-stick saute pan with a little oil and heat over medium-high heat. Add the patties and cook until brown, turning, about 3-4 minutes on each side.
  7. Remove and keep warm.
  8. To serve, place buns on a sheet tray and place in the oven. Toast until golden brown, about 3-5 minutes.
  9. On the bottom of the bun place sweet potato patty. Top with mashed avocado, spinach leaves and lettuce. Spread the horseradish sauce on the top bun and place on top of the burger.

Horseradish Cream
Prep time
Total time
Serves: ¾ cup
  • ½ cup raw unsalted cashews, soaked for 2-24 hours, rinsed and drained
  • ¼ cup unflavored almond milk
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon organic maple syrup
  • 4 tablespoons (or more) of freshly grated horseradish (add gradually and taste for. spiciness)
  • ¼ teaspoon salt (or more to taste)
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  1. Add all the ingredients to a food processor. Blend until smooth. Taste for seasonings.





55 thoughts on “Vegan Sweet Potato Burger with Chickpeas & Spinach

    1. Hi Mary – Yes you can use ground flax seed eggs – 2 tablespoons of ground flax seed whisked with 5 1/2 tablespoons of water – place in refrigerator for 10 min to thicken. This equals 2 eggs. Or you could use Bob’s Red Mill egg replacer. Hope that helps. Thanks for being part of our healthy community!

    1. Hi Deborah – I like using cooked chickpeas in this recipe which come in a 15-ounce can or carton. But if you are cooking dried chickpeas – here is what I recommend.
      Place the dried chickpeas in a large bowl and cover with cold water. The chickpeas will expand to over double their size, so make sure you cover by several inches of water to allow for expansion. Cover the bowl with a clean towel and let them soak for approximately 12 hours. Drain the water and rinse the beans before cooking. Place the chickpeas into the bottom of a large pot and cover with water. Use 1 quart of water per 1 cup of chickpeas. Bring the chickpeas to a boil, then reduce heat and reduce the chickpeas to a simmer. Add 1/8 of a teaspoon of salt per cup of chickpeas. Let the beans cook for approximately 50-60 minutes until desired tenderness. Certain dishes require very tender beans (like hummus), while other dishes call for firmer beans like stews and soups that will be cooked again. Adjust the cooking time to achieve the desired tenderness for your purposes. Hope that helps. Thanks for being part of our healthy community!

    1. Hi Linda – You could use any kind of flour. Whole wheat word work if it doesn’t need to be gluten-free. I like the chickpea flour because is has the complex carbohydrate starch which the body is able to slowly digest and use for energy over time, making it a much more beneficial flour then plain white flour.

  1. Looking forward to trying this recipe. I’m trying to reduce the amount of oil I use, and am wondering if I can cook these in the oven on parchment paper instead. Also, I wasn’t aware until recently that Worcestershire sauce isn’t vegan. It has anchovies in it. There are vegan options available though.

    1. Hi Janine – Meant to put vegan in front of the Worcestershire sauce – What I used was vegan and it was delicious. Added a nice umami. Yes you could definitely bake these on parchment paper. Thanks for stopping by and thanks for being part of our healthy community!

      1. Hi,
        They turned out amazing, and thanks for the reply. Next time I will try to use Vegan Rochester sauce.

    1. Hi Margaret – Absolutely these can be frozen up to 6 months – Hope you enjoy and thanks for stopping by! Nancy

  2. This is the first recipe I tried from your site — it was delicious, even though I forgot to put in the onion and didn’t make the horseradish sauce. I doubled the recipe and made a lot! We ate them warmed up over the next several days and ate them with different things (hot peppers, chopped up on a salad, cold dipped in ketchup), and they were great that way too.

    Thanks for introducing me to healthy food I can make AND my family will eat! 🙂

    1. Thank you for taking the time to give your feedback Lee – I appreciate it. I love these vegan burgers. Nancy

  3. Hi these burgers look amazing and can’t wait to try them. I am gluten free but don’ t use gf bread as i try to avoid too many grains, what could I use instead? Many thanks.

    1. Hi Karen – I have never tried this but perhaps some ground nuts could work as a binder for this recipe. I would recommend almonds or cashews. Hope that helps and thanks for being part of our healthy community!

  4. Hi Nancy, your recipes are always so good, but … you could start a national burger chain with this one! My family of 5 is vegan and this is our favorite burger, either home-made or from a restaurant. We discovered by accident that using purple sweet potatoes (we used Japanese) gave them a very “real” burger color. Thank you for this and everything! PS – Is it too late to promote this for Memorial Day weekend?

    1. Hi Dave – Thank you so much for those kind and encouraging words – you made my weekend and no it is never too late to promote a great recipe and I will use your quote if thats alright with you. Have a wonderful Memorial Day weekend. Nancy

  5. how many cups of cooked sweet potatoes is 1 1/2 pounds sweet potatoes..???

    I have a couple of large ones here and have no idea what they weight.
    Would love to try this..sounds great


  6. how many cups of cooked sweet potatoes is 1 1/2 pounds sweet potatoes..???

    Would love to try this..sounds great


    1. Hi Joanne – one large sweet potato yields about 1 1/2 cups of cooked – hope that helps and thanks for stopping by

      1. Hi Nancy! I’m new to this site and your podcast! In this recipe, just for clarification, am I supposed to use 1 1/2 pounds of sweet potato or 1 1/2 cups? The recipe mentions 1 1/2 pounds, but you had also mentioned something about 1 1/2 cups… thanks so much!

        1. Hi Sari – sorry for the late reply – it is approximately 1 1/2 pounds of sweet potatoes. Hope you enjoy. Happy New Year!

  7. Hi Nancy,
    Would like to know if the spinach is cooked when added to the food processer or should it be raw.sharda

    1. Good question Shardou – Lightly saute spinach over medium heat until wilted. This only takes 2-3 minutes. Squeeze out any water. I updated the recipe. Thanks for the heads up.

      1. Hi! Is the amount of spinach (2 cups) the fresh spinach before slightly sautéing? Or do you need to end up with 2 cups of it sautéed? Thank you!

  8. Hi. I have made the sweet potato burger and the flavour was great. Sadly I had an accident near the sink and lost the chick pea water. I found the burger way to soft. Is that because I was missing aquafaba??And even though I halfed the quantities I still had load,s . Any idea other than the missing aquafaba why it was so soft and what tip,s do you have to make if firmer.

    1. Hi Tracey – sorry to hear they were soft. The aquafaba liquid binds them so that could have played into the softness. Next time if they are too sticky before you cook them, just add more bread crumbs next time. That will help bind them together and make them much more firm. Thanks for reaching out and for being part of our healthy community!

    1. Hi Shardou – Thanks for stopping by! You could replace it with wasabi or even a ground stone mustard just to give it a punch. You could also just omit it. Hope that helps and have a wonderful day! Nancy

  9. Hi from New Zealand Nancy! I made these today and they were delicious ! I also want to take this opportunity to say how much I am enjoying your podcasts, I only discovered them a couple of months ago and I’m glad I did. They are so informative and interesting and you present them in a way that makes the minefield of vegan nutrition so easy to understand , thank you for that. Have a beautiful day! Marj ☺

    1. Hi Marj – thank you so much for your kind and generous words! I love that you are listening all the way from New Zealand! Nancy

  10. I love your website and your recipes! These butgers are amazing!! I will never buy bean burgers again! I love that the recipe makes such an abundant supply. Thank you very much!

    1. Hi Deborah – I have never subbed pumpkin but it sounds yummy and I don’t see why not. Thanks for stopping by

  11. I just made these burgers last night. While the flavor was good, the burgers were mushy on the inside. I baked the sweet potatoes in the instant pot instead of the oven. Would that have made them too moist? I only had about 3/4 cup of panko in my pantry, but I almost think I could have added 2 cups of panko to make them less mushy. Any thoughts?

    1. Hi Valerie – most vegan Veggie burgers are much lower in fat so they are not as dense. More dry ingredients like bread crumbs will help. Also make sure there is not too much water when you add your sweet potatoes – I would dry them off before adding if you are boiling them. Hope that helps. Thanks for stopping by and for being part of our healthy community.

  12. Question on the spinach. Does it call for 2 cups of cooked spinach, or 2 cups raw that gets cooked.
    I measured 2 large handfuls, weighed 2 oz., and steamed it. Net result was 1/2 cup. Is this correct?

    1. Hi Pamela – I like to use 1 – 2 cups of spinach that has been blanched / steamed – water pressed out – Thanks for stopping by

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