Memorial Day Weekend is a time for busting out the grill, kicking back with a fizzy beverage and toasting the unofficial arrival of summer. It’s also a time for the plant-based set to bust out their best barbecue recipes in case their entourage needs a gentle reminder of just how tasty vegan fare can be.

This year, MDW is looking a little—a lot different—and while we’re filled with sadness from being apart from loved ones we can think of one thing we can do to quell the pain: Make some damn good ‘cue. One thing we don’t want to be dealing with this weekend? Complicated recipes with 100 steps so involved you feel anointed with an honorary culinary degree come dinner. That’s why this weekend, we’ll be whipping up these vegan BBQ sliders, courtesy of the recipe developers at Pampered Chef. As the makers of neat kitchen tools and gadgets (think: corn kernel cutter, salad cutting bowl set, apple wedger) they certainly know a thing or two about making mealtime preparation fast and efficient.

The “burgers” come together with carrots, sweet potatoes, and red onion and get slathered in a delectable homemade barbecue sauce. Since it’s South Carolina-style sauce, the base is made from mustard. With only a handful of pantry ingredients and spice rack staples, it’s quite simple to make on your own, but if you’ve got a go-to pre-made barbecue sauce feel free to swap in about a cup of it in lieu of the homemade version. Until the time comes when we can safely have the full crew over to show them once again that yes, eating vegan is really that delicious, let’s get cooking.

Pampered Chef’s Vegan BBQ Sliders

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 20 minutes

Makes 6 servings

Ingredients

For burgers:

  • 1  bulk carrot (also called juicing carrots), peeled and cut into thirds
  • 1 sweet potato, ends trimmed and cut in half
  • ½  red onion
  • ¼ tsp (1 mL) salt
  • 12   vegan slider buns
  • 12   dill pickle slices (optional)

For South Carolina Barbecue Sauce:

  • ⅓ cup (75 mL) yellow mustard
  • ⅓ cup (75 mL) apple cider vinegar
  • 1–2 garlic clove, pressed
  • ¼ cup (50 mL) tomato paste
  • 2½ tbsp (37 mL) light brown sugar
  • ½ tsp (2 mL) reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • ¼ tsp (1 mL) paprika
  • ¼ tsp (1 mL) black pepper
  • ⅛ tsp (0.5 mL) cayenne pepper

Instructions

  1. Spiralize the carrot and the sweet potato with the fettuccine blade using a veggie spiralizer like this one. Then spiralize the red onion with the ribbon blade.
  2. Snip all the vegetables into shorter pieces with kitchen shears.
  3. Place the vegetables into a microwave- or oven-safe container. Sprinkle with salt and mix well to combine with tongs.
  4. Microwave, covered, on HIGH, 12–14 minutes, or until the vegetables are very tender. You can also bake the vegetables in the oven until cooked.
  5. Meanwhile, prepare the barbecue sauce by whisking all the sauce ingredients together in a medium bowl.
  6. Remove the vegetables from the microwave. Pour the sauce over the vegetables and mix well with the tongs.
  7. Microwave, covered, for 1½–2 minutes, or until the sauce starts to thicken and the mixture is warmed through.
  8. Place the vegetable mixture on buns and top with dill pickle slices.