Recipe For Veggie “Meat” Balls with Spaghetti


I’m always faced with the same dilemma when it comes to making dinner for Lulu. I try to make a meat-less equivalent for the vegetarians in the house. Today I cooked meatballs for dinner, which Lulu and his sisters obviously don’t eat. I decided to try my hand at making veggie meatballs. The veggie balls are nut-free and egg-free, which is perfect for my 9-year-old-sister-in-law who has all those allergies. I didn’t know what to expect, but the result was surprisingly pleasant.

You can serve the veggie balls as appetizers as well, falafel-style or in a sandwich à la Saad’s. I serve them in a simple tomato sauce with wheat spaghetti.

1. Info for Veggie “Meat” Balls with Spaghetti

  • Cook Time: unavailable
  • Total Time: unavailable
  • Servings: 6
  • Calories: unavailable

2. Ingredients for Veggie “Meat” Balls with Spaghetti

  • 1/4 cup panko crumbs
  • 2 cloves garlic, very finely minced
  • 1 15-oz can canellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 Tbs celery, very finely diced
  • 1 Tbs baby carrots, very finely diced
  • 1 Tbs parmesan powder
  • 1 Tbs fresh mint, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/3 tsp black peppercorns, freshly ground
  • 2 tsp jalapeno green chile, seeded, finely minced
  • 1/2 tsp Vegemite
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp xanthan gum
  • 1 tsp ginger garlic paste
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika powder
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 2 Tbs lemon juice, freshly squeezed
  • 1/2 tsp soy liquid lecithin
  • 4 Tbs canola oil
  • 1/2 cup sorghum flour, for breading, as needed
  • 1 shallot, finely chopped
  • 1 jar marinara sauce
  • 1 package wheat spaghetti, cooked according to package directions
  • 1 Tbs unsalted butter
  • 4 Tbs parseman cheese shavings
  • 2 Tbs flat leaf parsley, coarsely chopped

3. Directions:

  1. In a very small bowl, add the xanthan gum and lecithin to enough vegetable oil (about a teaspoon) to dissolve the xanthan gum.  This will keep the xanthan gum from beading up into balls when it comes into contact with water. Add the liquid lecithin. Stir them together thoroughly. It’s kind of like making a roux.  Add the lemon juice and sugar to the xanthan gum / lecithin mixture. Set aside.
  2. Combine the canellini beans, carrots, celery, mint, jalapeno, vegemite, garlic powder, ginger garlic paste and paprika in a food processor. Pulse just until everything is coarsely mashed. Add the panko crumbs. Add the xantham gum/lecithin mixture and pulse 2-3 times. Season with salt and pepper. Roll the mixture into 2-inch balls.
  3. Sprinkle a plate with sorghum flour. Thinly coat each ball with sorghum flour.
  4. In a large saucepan, heat about 1 tablespoon of oil. Cook the shallot until golden. Add the marinara sauce. Reduce the heat to a simmer.
  5. In a non-stick pan, heat the rest of the oil. Add the minced garlic and cook until it’s slightly golden. Remove the garlic to prevent it from burning. Add the veggie balls and cook them for about 5-6 minutes on each side until they are firm and nicely browned. Transfer the veggie balls to the marina sauce. Stir gently, without breaking the balls. Cover and let stand for about 3-4 minutes.
  6. Transfer all the sauce and veggies balls to a large platter.
  7. Saute the spaghetti in butter in the same saucepan used for the marina sauce for about 2 minutes, just enough to heat up the pasta.
  8. When you’re ready to serve, form a nest of spaghetti in each plate. Place some marinara sauce in the center and some veggie balls. Sprinkle some parmesan shavings and garnish with parsley.
  9. Serve hot.

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