Easy Pinto Bean Burgers


One of the first things I taught myself to “cook” was frozen bean burgers from the local Walmart when I was in school in Arkansas.

Is heating something from the freezer considered cooking? Probably not. But I was so proud of myself, making dinners out of frozen black bean burgers or whole wheat pasta with jarred sauce.


When I went away to school and finally had a dorm apartment with a tiny kitchen, I started buying my own food instead of just eating in the caf all the time. There’s only so many Cinnamon Toast Crunch dinners you can take.

I pretty much only made 3 meals in college for myself: frozen pizzas, whole wheat pasta with jarred sauce and veggies on the side, and those frozen black bean burgers (that I still love). The only bad thing about cooking the same 3 things over and over? I couldn’t eat any of these meals for years after getting out of school – I had eaten them so much over a year and a half that I was completely sick of them.


Lucky for us, I was never totally turned off of bean burgers AND we finally made a good batch at home.

Oh, I’ve tried to make them at home before.

I’ve made lots of batches but some just didn’t have enough spice or they fall apart as soon as you take a bite. But these burgers are exactly how we like ‘em: crispy on the outside, tender on the inside.

And bonus: you could make these, freeze them at home, and not even have to go down that isle in the grocery store.


Easy Pinto Bean Burgers

Makes: 6 burgers


  • 2 (15 oz.) cans pinto beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 1/2 cup masa harina (or very finely ground cornmeal)
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 scallions, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Pour the beans into a large bowl and mash them together with a potato masher or 2 forks. Once most of the beans are mashed and creamy, set the bowl to the side.
  3. In a medium bowl, beat the eggs together and stir in the masa harina and olive oil.
  4. Pour the eggs and masa into the bowl with the beans and add the garlic, scallions, smoked paprika, cumin, salt, and pepper. Mix everything together and shape the beans into 6 equal burgers.
  5. Place the burgers on a parchment-lined baking sheet and bake at 350 for 15-20 minutes.


  1. Love the pictures in this. So simple and beautiful!

  2. I’m always looking for another bean burger recipe! Thanks :)

  3. These look amazing and I love the egg on the top!

    But…let’s not get crazy with bashing Cinnamon Toast Crunch. ;)

  4. These look great and so easy! I don’t think I’ve ever used pinto beans but now I must. :)

  5. It’s been too long since I’ve made a veggie burger from scratch… maybe this will be my weekend sandwich.

  6. Yess! Love bean burgers (also a college staple for me) and this recipe looks totally doable, even for a worknight. :)

  7. Oooh, this looks really good! It almost reminds me of a refried bean patty. And that’s a compliment because I loooove refried beans.

  8. I also ate a lot of bean burgers at university…lol. It must be something international! I haven’t really had that many since but these look really tasty.

  9. Those bean burgers look amazing–love the simplicity of them!

  10. These look so good! I’m always on the lookout for good veggie/bean burgers I can put away in the freezer for a busy night. I also love the idea of a fried egg on top!

  11. I love bean burgers – but I’d love to try and make them myself instead of buying the costco box every month.

  12. Never heard of or tried bean burgers? Am I missing out?

  13. Pingback: Weekly Wrap: 8/26-9/1 | Healthy Heddleston

  14. Is there something I can substitute the Masa for? I have family members who are allergic to corn. What function does the Masa serve? Thickener/filler? Binder?

    • Hi Beth – it definitely helps bind everything. You could probably sub in some flour or ground up oats or possibly breadcrumbs.

Comments are closed.