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BBQ Sweet Potato Kale Burgers with Creamy Vegan Ranch

Sweet-salty is a killer combo, but right up there with it is BBQ-Ranch. BBQ sauce is sweet/spicy/smoky and ranch is tangy, which makes for an incredible juxtaposition. A couple years ago, I discovered this when I hesitantly made a BBQ sweet potato pizza with ranch dressing on it. It was a Pinterest win that I have now turned into a wholesome burger.

I’ve never really loved ranch dressing, but this ranch is another story. No mayo, no oil, just creamy, tangy yumminess. Best of all, it takes just a couple minutes to whizz up once your cashews are soaked.

The burgers are also fairly simple to put together once your rice and potatoes are cooked. If you can remember to cook those in advance, this meal is easy!


Wholesome sweet potatoes, kale, brown rice and an explosion of flavorful spices make these burgers complete winners! My little one absolutely loved the burger mixture before it was cooked (she doesn’t even bat an eye at red pepper flakes and chili powder, that’s how we know she’s our daughter!), then she also loved the handiness of being able to hold her own little patty. I love biting into a saucy (like DRIPPING), smoky, sweet, spicy burger and knowing it is 100% good for the body and soul. Food doesn’t get much better than this!


5 from 1 vote
BBQ Sweet Potato Kale Burgers with Creamy Vegan Ranch
Prep Time
30 mins
Cook Time
20 mins
Total Time
50 mins

Bursting with smoky, spicy and sweet BBQ flavor, these nutritious burgers taste amazing slathered with a quick tangy homemade ranch dressing. Gluten-free, Oil-free, Vegan, and delicious!

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: BBQ, Burger, Ranch, Veggie burger
Servings: 6 burgers
  • 2 small sweet potatoes/yams
  • 1 cup cooked brown rice
  • 2 cups packed chopped kale
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes (omit if you don't like heat)
  • 1/4 cup your favorite BBQ sauce
  • 1/2 cup quick oats
Ranch Dressing
  • 1/2 cup Unsweetened Original Ripple Milk
  • 1/3 cup raw cashews (soaked at least 10 minutes in hot water)
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice (about the juice of one lemon)
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1 tbsp fresh dill (or 1 tsp dried dill)
To serve
  • 6 whole wheat hamburger buns (optional)
  • avocado slices
  • lettuce or spring mix
  • additional BBQ sauce
  1. Cook sweet potatoes by baking them in the microwave for about 12 minutes, or until both are soft. Cut them open to let cool. 

  2. Cook kale by putting chopped kale in a dry non-stick skillet. Stir over medium-high heat until it is about half the original volume and is wilted and tender, about 3-4 minutes. 

    Preheat the oven to 375. 

    Into a food processor, scoop out the sweet potato and discard the skins. You should have roughly 2 cups of cooked sweet potato. Combine all the ingredients except 1/2 of the rice. Process until well combined but not totally smooth. You want some texture. Stir in the rest of the rice to add even more texture. 

  3. Scoop the mixture using a 1/3 or 1/2 cup measure (depending on how big you want the burgers) and make 6 to 8 burgers. Place on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake at 375 for 10 minutes. Carefully flip them and then bake 5-10 more minutes until they are the desired firmness. If I'm serving these as burgers on a bun, I want them to be more durable than if I'm just going to eat them with a fork. 

Ranch Dressing:
  1. In a small bullet or twister jar, or a high-speed blender, combine all ingredients. Blend until very smooth. 

To serve:
  1. Top burgers with lots of additional BBQ sauce, slathers of ranch dressing, avocado, spring mix, and all your other favorite burger toppings. They are delicious with or without a hamburger bun. 

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  1. I made this last night for dinner. I didn’t make the ranch sauce; maybe next time. Yummy burgers. I used store bought bbq sauce in the recipe, but want to research homemade WFPB for better nutrition. We will make these burgers again because we all liked them, including our three children.

    1. I’ve made a delicious homemade BBQ sauce from the Forks over Knives website. There are healthier BBQ sauces available to buy now, too, that have no sugar. Thanks for the comment!

  2. I made these last night and they were amazing!!! The patties held their shape perfectly and the ranch was a great addition. I also ate them for lunch today and already want to make them again 😄

    1. I’m so glad you liked them! I have kind of forgotten about this recipe, I need to make them again. Thanks so much for the feedback!

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