Lentil Burgers: Rebooting Healthy Eating Habits

Lentil Patties

The current issue of Martha Stewart Living magazine arrived at my house recently. As always, the first thing I did was flip to the back recipe section to see what edibles are in store this month. I wasn’t disappointed either, there are 32 recipes in this issue– including the lentil burgers you see pictured here. I’ve never made lentil burgers before. I’ve even teased a few of my vegetarian friends about lentil burgers. So I was surprised to find that Martha’s Lentil Patties with Lettuce and Yogurt appealed to me so completely. This is partly because the recipe isn’t trying to be a a cuter than cute replacement for meat. I see it as just another delicious (and simple) way to enjoy my favorite legume. This time in the form of a lentil burger.

Once I decided which recipe I was going to try first, I started looking through the rest of the issue. I immediately noticed that this is the first time the January and February issues of Martha Stewart Living have been rolled into one seasonal issue. Which is fine with me. The January issues in the past were usually all about clutter-clearing your closets and keeping your home desk organized. Useful tips were sure to be found, but frankly they bored me. I’m not saying these organizational inspirations aren’t featured in this combo issue. They are. But they’re balanced with the things I like best about MSL, the edible inspirations.

Eric Pike (editor in chief) must feel the same way. He opens the issue warning us that the “excess of the holidays” means that “early winter is often a time for rebooting healthy eating habits…”

I agree. So reboot I shall. Lentil burgers are just the boot in the butt I need. GREGLentil Burgers Martha Stewart Living

Lentil Patties with Lettuce and Yogurt 

Print This Recipe Total time Yield 4Source Martha Stewart Living Jan/FebPublished

The lentil mixture can be made a day ahead and stored in the refrigerator. Form it into patties just before cooking.

Lentil Burgers Martha Stewart Living


  • ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons, dried French green lentils
  • coarse salt (as needed)
  • 1 small red onion (half finely diced half thinly sliced)
  • 2 large eggs (lightly beaten)
  • 1 cup fresh breadcrumbs
  • 2 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves (plus more for serving)
  • 2 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil (plus more for serving)
  • 1 small head lettuce (such as oak leaf, Bibb, or escarole, leaves separated)
  • ½ cup plain yogurt
  • cayenne pepper (as needed for serving)
  • 12 caper berries (or substitute about 2 tablespoons capers, rinsed)


Bring lentils and 3 cups water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Reduce heat, season with salt, and simmer until lentils are tender, about 20 minutes. Drain and let cool. (If not using lentils immediately, let cool and then refrigerate in cooking liquid up to 5 days.)

Combine lentils, ½ teaspoon salt, diced red onion, eggs, breadcrumbs, and parsley in a medium bowl. Transfer half of mixture to a food processor; pulse until smooth (or mash with a potato masher). Fold into remaining lentil mixture until well combined. Using a ¼‑cup measure as a scoop, shape mixture into eight 2 ½‑inch patties.

Heat a heavy, large skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil and swirl to coat bottom. Add patties in a single layer, working in batches if necessary. Cook, turning once, until crisp and brown, about 4 minutes. Transfer patties to serving plates and let cool slightly.

Divide lettuce leaves among serving plates; top with lentil patties. Divide yogurt among plates. Season with salt, sprinkle with cayenne, and drizzle with olive oil. Garnish with caper berries, sliced onion, and parsley.