Cinco de Mayo menu

Yesterday we covered the appetizers and the history of Cinco de Mayo. Today we will discuss the main dish, homemade Black Bean Burgers, and the why behind Cinco de Mayo. describes Cinco de Mayo as a “relatively minor” holiday in Mexico that has evolved into a celebration of Mexican culture and heritage in the U.S. Oh really? Because it seems to me it’s just an ordinary day celebrated with an obligatory Corona, Tecate or shot of tequila. I’m pretty sure the evil geniuses in the marketing departments of these companies are behind the popularity of Cinco de Mayo in the states. (Thank you?)

Cinco de Mayo first hit my radar screen back in college. Ohio State was still on a quarter (rather than semester) schedule when I was there, so Cinco de Mayo fell right around the mid-way point of the quarter. A party was a natural reprieve from the five weeks of school we had left until summer break.

Homemade Black Bean Burgers

Creating homemade dishes instead of relying on packaged meals has been on my mind a lot as of late. It’s so easy to grab a frozen veggie patty out of habit and perceived convenience, but what’s really in those things? And where does all of the food come from? Though I don’t always have the answer to the latter question when cooking or baking from scratch (i.e. I don’t know where the chicken farm that produces my egg is located), I really like knowing how things come together. And the sense of satisfaction I get from pulling scratch meals together is just the icing on the cake.

The recipe I used came from Whole Foods Market. For the most part, I followed the recipe as written (I used fresh herbs instead of dried herbs) to establish a baseline for future homemade black bean burgers. I was really impressed with the consistency of the burgers – they really were like a thick, juicy hamburger. Since I am trying to stay away from meat, the black bean burgers were a very satisfying substitution.

As for the flavor, the recipe calls for quite a few herbs and spices, and you may need to stray from the measurements below to suit your own tastes. I really regret not adding cumin to the black bean mixture, and I suspect chili powder would taste pretty good in them as well. I also thought about adding a few whole black beans to the patties, and I bet adding a different variety of beans like pinto, or even corn, would make for a nice modification.

Homemade Black Bean Burgers

This is a great basic recipe that lends itself to experimenting with flavors and toppings. I enjoyed my burger with tomatoes and cilantro left over from the guacamole and salsa appetizers, and a I bet a nice slice of avocado or a dollop of sour cream would have tasted equally delicious. Try the recipe sometime, and you are sure to have a delicious homemade black bean burger ready in a matter of minutes.

If you would like to see more Mexican-themed foods before tomorrow’s post, check out my Cinco de Mayo board on Pinterest. Enjoy!

Day 1: The Appetizers
Day 2: The Main Dish
Day 3: The Side Dish
Day 4: The Drink
Day 5: The Dessert
Homemade Black Bean Burgers
Serves: 4-6
  • 1 (15-ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 egg
  • ½ yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 cup bread crumbs
  • 2 teaspoons hot sauce
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon basil
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • olive or other vegetable oil for cooking
  1. Place the rinsed and drained beans in a large bowl and use a fork to mash to the desired consistency.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients to the bowl and mix well to combine.
  3. Shape the mixture into patties.
  4. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
  5. Arrange patties in a single layer (working in batches, if needed) and cook, flipping once, until golden brown on both sides and cooked through, about 10 minutes.
  6. Serve as desired.

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