These homemade air fryer veggie burgers are probably the quickest and easiest vegan burger recipe you'll ever make! Pantry-friendly ingredients are mixed in a bowl, formed into patties, and cooked in the air fryer OR baked in the oven. It's that easy! They're low in fat and high in protein thanks to TVP, beans, and vital wheat gluten (seitan). Make them gluten-free with one swap!
Why This Recipe Works
Quick, filling, high-protein, low-fat, smoky, savory, and tender but not mushy! These are a few words that come to mind when describing these air fryer veggie burgers.
One of the things we all love so much about the air fryer is how quickly it cooks foods, right? So I thought it would be fun to create a veggie burger mixture that's equally as quick!
Sautéing ingredients like onion, garlic, and mushrooms is a great way to add flavor and create truly delicious veggie burgers, like these vegan mushroom-barley burgers. But sometimes you just want a short cut!
So think of it as your short-cut veggie burger recipe, that's both delicious AND healthier than store-bought veggie burgers.
I think you'll love it because it's:
- seriously low effort - NO chopping or hauling out the food processor
- ready in 25 minutes
- nut-free with oil-free and gluten-free options
- low in fat and high in fiber and plant-based protein
- a great base for experimenting with different seasonings
- and if you don't have an air fryer you can bake them in the oven!
- TVP - textured vegetable protein is usually easy to find in the bulk bins at the grocery store or order online. I use this TVP from Anthony's.
- vital wheat gluten - this is a high-protein flour created from wheat. It's used to make seitan. I have an entire seitan category if you need other ways to use vital wheat gluten. To make these veggie burgers gluten-free, use your favorite GF flour blend.
- soy sauce - or certified gluten-free tamari.
- beans - I've tested the recipe with black beans and kidney beans. Black beans create a more beefy, neutral color (pictured above). Kidney beans add a touch of red color to the burgers (used in the uncooked mixture below).
- sriracha - we're not using enough to make the burgers spicy, just enough to add subtle tang and sweetness in the background. Use ketchup or BBQ sauce if preferred.
- smoked paprika - adds a naturally smoky flavor.
- oil - optional; 1 tablespoon of oil gives the patties a bit more moisture but isn't required. We really enjoy them both ways.
- apple cider vinegar - a little bit of apple cider vinegar balances the flavors.
- seasonings - dried oregano, onion, garlic, and smoked paprika add savory and smoky flavor. If you have dried parsley, go ahead and toss some of that in, too!
See recipe card below for quantities and the full recipe.
- Heat up ⅔ cup water and pour over the TVP. Set aside.
- Place the beans in a mixing bowl and mash with a fork. Add all remaining ingredients except the flour/vital wheat gluten, and stir to combine.
- Add the vital wheat gluten (or GF flour) to the bowl and stir. Now use your hands to make sure everything is well incorporated. Lightly knead and mix for 30 seconds or so, to develop the gluten.
- Preheat your air fryer to 350 degrees F (see oven instructions below). Form the mixture into a rectangle and divide evenly into 4 pieces. Shape into patties about ⅝-inch thick. Air fry for 12 minutes, flipping at the halfway point.
Tip! Air fryers tend to vary, so it's always a good idea to keep a close eye on the food the first time you try any air fryer recipe. You may need to slightly adjust the cook time.
If you don't have an air fryer that's no problem! We also tested these veggie burgers in the oven.
- Preheat the oven to 370 degrees F, and line a baking sheet with parchment or a silicone mat.
- Bake for 21 to 23 minutes, flipping the burgers at the halfway point.
- Gluten-free - instead of vital wheat gluten use your favorite GF baking blend. I tested the recipe with King Arthur's gluten-free flour.
- Oil-Free - if you strictly avoid oil in your diet you'll be happy to know you can simply omit it from the burgers without issue.
- Spicy - feel free to add more sriracha, a different hot sauce, black pepper and/or crushed red pepper flakes.
Equipment & Batch Size
I use the 6-Quart Instant Vortex Air Fryer, but any type of air fryer should work for this recipe.
If you plan to make a double batch, 8 burgers, you'll need to either air fry them in two batches or bake them in the oven.
To prep the burger mixture, you'll also need 1 small bowl to hydrate the TVP, 1 mixing bowl, and a few measuring cups/spoons and utensils.
Store leftover patties in the refrigerator for up to 5 days, or freeze for up to 1 month.
Air fryers vary quite a bit, so the first time you try any air fryer recipe it's a good idea to keep a close eye on the food. Check the burgers at the halfway point and during the final 2 to 3 minutes of cooking.
I suspect our air fryer runs hot compared to others. So you may find you need to slightly adjust the temperature and/or cook time. When the veggie burgers are crisp around the edges and piping hot in the middle, you'll know they're done.
More TVP Recipes
I hope you enjoy these quick and easy Air Fryer Veggie Burgers! If you try the recipe be sure to leave a comment below to let us know.
Homemade Air Fryer Veggie Burgers
- 1 cup TVP (textured vegetable protein)
- ⅔ cup hot water
- ¾ cup cooked black or kidney beans, rinsed and patted dry
- 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
- 1 ½ tablespoons soy sauce - or tamari for GF
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon oil, optional - or smooth raw almond butter
- 2 teaspoons sriracha hot sauce - or ketchup or BBQ sauce
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon dried parsley, optional
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- ¼ cup vital wheat gluten or a gluten-free all-purpose flour blend - sub regular all-purpose or whole wheat if desired
- Preheat air fryer to 350 degrees F or oven to 370 degrees F.
- Combine TVP and hot water in a bowl and stir well.
- In a mixing bowl, mash the beans with a fork. Add the hydrated TVP and all remaining ingredients except the flour/vital wheat gluten. Stir to combine.
- Add the vital wheat gluten/flour to the bowl and stir. Now use your hands to make sure everything is well incorporated. Lightly knead and mix for 30 seconds or so, to develop the gluten.
- Form the mixture into a rectangle and divide evenly into 4 pieces. Shape each piece into a patty about ⅝-inch thick. Note: flatter/thinner burgers will be firmer and more dry; slightly thicker patties will be softer and more moist inside. We like them both ways!
- Air fry for 11 to 13 minutes, flipping at the halfway point. The burgers are done when firm, crisp around the edges, and piping hot in the center.
- To bake in the oven, place the patties on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake for 21 to 23 minutes or until piping hot and firm.
- Let cool for a few minutes then serve on a bun or in a grain bowl or salad.
Estimated Nutrition (per serving)
Nutrition information is an estimate and will vary depending on the exact amounts and specific products and ingredients used. We calculate this information using the online calculator cronometer.com.