Minutes that it takes to cook: 30

Number of people it serves: 4 – 6

Steps to make the recipe: 8



1 x 400 g can Lucky Star Pilchards in Tomato Sauce

1 x 410 g can chickpeas, drained and rinsed

3 slices wholewheat bread, finely chopped

1 egg

3 Tbsp (45 ml) chutney

2 tsp (10 ml) dried mixed herbs

Seasoned flour, for dusting



Vegetable oil, for frying

1 small onion, finely chopped

1 chilli, deseeded and finely chopped

1 Tbsp (15 ml) white wine vinegar

1 tsp (5 ml) sugar

2 tomatoes, finely chopped

1 carrot, peeled and grated

4–6 burger buns

4 tsp (20 ml) tangy mayonnaise

Handful baby spinach leaves

2 gherkins, sliced lengthways



Drain the pilchards and reserve the sauce. Mash the chickpeas and pilchards together.

Add the finely chopped bread, egg, chutney and herbs.

Divide the mixture into 4–6 balls and shape into patties. Dust with flour and place in the fridge to firm up while the chakalaka is being made.



Heat a small amount of oil in a saucepan, add the onion and chilli and cook over a medium heat until softened and golden.

Add the vinegar and sugar, stirring well so it doesn’t burn.

Add the tomatoes, reserved pilchard sauce and grated carrot, turn the heat down and allow to simmer for 10–15 minutes until softened and thickened. Remove from heat.

Heat a little oil in a shallow frying pan. Reduce the heat and add the burger patties to the pan. Turn them after 3–4 minutes and allow to cook evenly before removing from the pan.

Cut open the burger buns and spread the bottom half with mayonnaise. Layer each bun with spinach leaves, gherkin slices, a burger patty and a heaped spoonful of chakalaka. Balance the remaining bun half on top and serve.



To get the perfect shape and size of the burger patty, use the lid from any jar (like a peanut butter jar) to get the right size

Download Recipe 

Anonymous. (2019). PILCHARDS BURGER WITH CHAKALAKA. [Blog]. PILCHARDS BURGER WITH CHAKALAKA. Available at:  https://luckystar.co.za/project/pilchard-burgers-chakalaka/ . [Accessed 6 November 2019].

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