Try This Vegetarian Thanksgiving Recipe: Garnet Yam Burgers


Whether you’re vegetarian or you have one or two vegetarians on your guest list, you might be familiar with the usual meat substitutes that are widely available at this time of year. Many of those are certainly delicious, but they’re really not much of a challenge for the host who enjoys cooking from scratch. If you like making new dishes for holiday meals and are looking for a tasty, interesting vegetarian meal idea, you should try this wonderful recipe for garnet yam burgers. The patties are at home both in and out of the bun, and they can easily play a leading role in your meal or work well as a side.

Garnet yams are definitely crave-worthy, with a back-of-the-mouth flavor and subtle sweetness that’s rare in other root vegetables. Plus, they pack a powerful nutritional punch. This recipe combines yams with chickpeas and millet for the firmness and bite of a burger, then brings it all up a notch with the distinct flavors of cumin, chili, and Worcestershire sauce, creating an impressive main or side for vegetarian and non-vegetarian guests alike.

Give it a try and see how impressed your vegetarian (and not-vegetarian) guests will be this year!

Serving suggestion

As a main course, serve on a toasted whole-wheat bun with Sriracha mayonnaise, sliced pickled jalapeños and crispy lettuce, or sweet pickles, ketchup and mustard if you prefer. For an interesting side, skip the bun and serve as it is topped with any or all of the above toppings.

Nutritional information per serving (approximate) 

  • 190 calories
  • 2.5 g. fat
  • 0 mg. cholesterol
  • 230 mg. sodium

Serves 6. Prep time: 30 minutes active; 45 minutes total.


  • 1 ½ cups vegetable broth
  • 1 cup peeled and diced garnet
  • yams or sweet potatoes
  • ¼ cup diced yellow onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ cup canned chickpeas, rinsed, drained and smashed
  • ½ cup millet
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 ½ teaspoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons vegetarian
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • salt
  • 1 cup bread crumbs, divided
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons vegetable oil


Bring the vegetable broth to a boil in a medium soup pot. Add the yams and simmer for about 8 minutes, just until the yams are getting tender. Add the onion, garlic, chickpeas and millet, cover the pot and simmer for another 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. The millet should be tender and the liquid should be entirely absorbed when done. Remove from heat and stir in the cumin, chili powder, Worcestershire, a pinch of salt and half of the bread crumbs. Stir well and form into 6 even burgers.

Put the beaten egg in a small dish and the remaining bread crumbs in another small dish or plate. Gently dip each burger in the egg, and then coat well in bread crumbs. Place the burgers on a sheet pan or plate and refrigerate for about 30 minutes.

Heat the vegetable oil over medium-high heat in a large skillet. Add the yam burgers to the pan and cook for 4 to 5 minutes until browned well on one side. Gently flip the burgers and cook another 4 to 5 minutes.

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