Sweet Potato Black Bean Burger Patties

These sweet potato black bean veggie burger patties are tender, hearty, delicious and highly satiating with irresistible Indian flavours. 

No doubt, I still love my potatoes but have you tried sweet potato fries yet? They are so addictive! And with all the hype over this sweet potato being a healthier option, it is the best choice to make these burger patties and replace our junk food. 😁

The burger patty recipe starts with a base of steamed or roasted sweet potatoes and a can of black beans held together with oats and infused with some fresh coriander, onion, and Indian spices. Don't want to use canned beans? no problem, take the long route and cook some beans. Don't have black beans? again, no issues, replace with what you have. This recipe is very versatile because I have been making these sweet potato patties since 2017 with kidney beans (rajma) and sometimes with chickpeas, and now with black beans. You can also play around with the spices per your taste. My meat-lover partner relishes this pure veggie burger and doesn't miss the meat for once! πŸ˜‰

These sweet potato burgers are super delicious and can beat all your favourite burger joint's veggie burgers. I know that is a tall claim, but you won't be disappointed. Even though the patties are tender, I can guarantee that they retain their shape while cooking making them a delight to eat without any mess. Also, did I mention that you can cook these patties in the oven, on the stove, or even on the grill, I am sure even the air fryer will work! 😍They also freeze well, so you can make a full batch and enjoy them over time. Remember if using a frozen batch, DO NOT THAW. And finally, This sweet potato burger patty recipe is easily adaptable to special diets like vegan or gluten-free. And once again, I am not kidding - this burger is truly filling! I made two burgers for myself but could eat only one. 

What can I use as a binder for a sweet potato black bean burger?

The most common question around making veggie burger patties is how to keep them from falling apart? or how to make it stay together? or how to make the patties firm? etc. The answer to all this is - to use a good BINDER ingredient. Usually, we go for an egg but in this recipe, we need a dry binder like breadcrumbs or flour that can absorb the moisture of both sweet potato and beans. For a healthier and vegan option, I chose to use oats. You can replace it with cooked rice, cooked burghul, poha, flaxseed flour, etc. You can test with several options because we will be adding the binder only in the end. So take a portion of the mixture and add the choice of binder to check if it holds, cook and check if you like the taste. Versatile much?

These Sweet Potato black bean burger patties are so easy to put together as all the main ingredients are pre-cooked. The recipe is vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free if you sub the oats with gluten-free options like rice or millets! If you are eggitarian, then take the burger a notch up with some slices of hard-boiled egg or fried egg! 

Sweet Potato Black Bean Burger Patties Recipe

Yields: 6 burger patties 


For the sweet potato burger patties:

  • 500gms sweet potatoes washed and skin scrubbed
  • 1 can (400g) black beans, rinsed and drained (see notes for substitute) 
  • 1 medium onion, diced finely
  • 2 teaspoon ginger garlic paste
  • 5 to 6 green chillies, finely chopped 
  • A handful of fresh coriander leaves, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon red chilli powder
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala powder (see notes for substitute)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil or ghee
  • 3/4 cup oats, coarsely ground (see notes for substitute)  
  • Salt to taste
  • oil for cooking (I used olive oil mixed with sunflower oil)


  • Black beans: I have used canned black beans for convenience. If you have to cook from scratch, then soak a cup of beans overnight and pressure cook with a dash of salt. Drain and use in this recipe. You will need roughly 1 and 1/2 cups of cooked beans. Some of the other options are chickpeas, kidney beans like rajma, fava beans, lima, white, etc.  
  • Oats: You can try replacing oats with quick-cooking oats, cooked bulgur, cooked rice, or soaked poha. I have had success with all these options but you have to adjust the quantity. If you are not on any diet, then feel free to use panko breadcrumbs. Whatever binder option you decide to use, add them in the end until the mixture firms up. 
  • Garam Masala: For this batch, I went all Indian but previously I have made batches that are akin to middle eastern flavours. You can switch garam masala with a dash of cinnamon or allspice or nutmeg and a pinch of all three. 


Prepare the sweet potatoes: 

  1. Bake or boil or steam the sweet potatoes with skin until cooked through. 
    • Oven roasting method:  Preheat the oven to 200 C. Halve the sweet potatoes horizontally. Rub them with olive oil and place cut side down on a lined baking tray. Bake the sweet potatoes until soft for about 30 minutes and set aside. 
    • Boiling method: Add the sweet potatoes into a large pot of water and Boil covered until tender. You can also pressure cook the sweet potatoes with skin on for 2 to 3 whistles. 
    • Steaming method: Bring water to a boil in a large pot. Place the steamer colander in the pot and put the sweet potatoes with skin in it. Cover the pot and allow steam until you can insert a knife without resistance, about 30 to 45 minutes depending on the thickness of the sweet potatoes. Using tongs, remove the sweet potatoes from the steamer basket and let rest for 5 minutes. 
  2. Peel and discard the skin while still warm and add them into a large mixing bowl. 

Prepare the black beans: 

  1. Drain and rinse the canned black beans and let them sit in the colander until you have the rest ingredients ready to use. This will give the beans time to drain completely. 

Prepare the burger patties mixture:

  1. Roughly mash the sweet potatoes using a fork or a potato masher. Add the chopped red onions, green chillies, fresh coriander leaves, ginger-garlic paste, and the spice powders (turmeric, red chilli, coriander, cumin and garam masala). 
  2. Add the drained black beans and salt to taste and mix everything thoroughly. 
  3. Start adding the ground oats until the mixture is no longer too wet but holds together when you shape a portion into a patty. 
  4. Cover and refrigerate the patty mixture for about 15 to 20 minutes to help the oats soak up any moisture. 

Shape the burger patties: 

  1. Divide the mixture into 6 equal portions for standard burger buns. If making sliders, then make more portions as per your needs. You can use a measuring cup to make the patties uniform in size.
  2. Lightly wet your hands with water or oil and shape the patties into a disc of the bun size. Place them on a greased tray and freeze for 20 minutes or until firm to touch. 

Cook the burger patties on a stove-top: 

  1. Heat two to three tablespoons of olive oil in a thick-bottomed pan. 
  2. Place 2 or 3 patties and cook on low to medium flame for 4 to 5 minutes. Tilt the pan and use a spoon to scoop some oil and spoon over the top of the patties. Do not flip until the patties are firm to turn.
  3. Flip each patty carefully and let it roast for another 5 minutes. The patties are firm outside and tender inside. 
  4. Add more oil if required before placing the remaining patties. You may keep the remaining patties in the freezer until frozen completely before you can pack them in a ziplock for later use.
  5. Remove the patties from the pan and start assembling your burgers. Serve immediately.


  • If planning to oven roast the patties, preheat the oven to 180c, then place the patties on a baking tray lined with parchment paper and brush with oil. Bake in preheated oven for 20 to 25 minutes.
  • Start toasting the burger buns while the patties are cooking. Keep all the condiments and sliced tomatoes and onions ready. Spread the burger base with prepared sauces and place the hot patty, immediately place the cheese slice so it gets a chance to melt. Top this with tomatoes, onions, pickles, eggs, herbs etc. and cover with more sauce and close the burger. Enjoy! 
  • You can skip the buns and use lettuce wraps for a lower carb intake. 

What goes with sweet potato burgers?

Simple ideas for assembling burgers:

  • 3 or 6 burger buns, toasted with butter or lettuce wraps
  • mayonnaise
  • feta cheese
  • labneh
  • coriander chutney
  • chilli oil
  • cheese slices
  • onion slices
  • ripe tomato slices
  • boiled or fried egg 
  • avocado 
  • ketchup

Easily the best veggie burger you can make at home without much effort. I hope you will give this a try for a weekend brunch. 

Originally published in 2017, updated the content, recipe and images in 2022. 

In my home we call this "Bathas Kizhangu" but I recently learnt that in Malayalam it is actually called madhura kizhangu. What do you call Sweet Potato in your language? Let me know in the comments or come chat with me on Instagram @butfirstchaai