I love a fake meatball. Ever since Nate’s Meatless Meatballs became impossible to purchase without insane shipping costs, I’ve been searching for a suitable alternative. I’ve previously made some pretty great TVP-based “meatballs”. Alas, TVP is also nearly impossible to buy where I live now. I found this recipe for vegan zucchini “meatballs” on Pinterest from the blog Making Thyme for Health.
They were pretty easy to make – easier than the TVP version. They did not bake all the way through in the middle, but I adjusted the recipe below with suggestions I think will correct that problem. I added more spices than called for in the original recipe. The taste and texture were really good. The only downside to this recipe is the cleanup. It was so heinous that Robbie asked me to never make it again 🙁 I suppose I will have to save this recipe for a day when I have the time to cook and do the dishes so, like never, basically. Huge shout out to my dish doing husband who makes cooking possible.
1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
2 tbsp minced garlic
1/2 c rolled oats
1/2 tbsp dried basil
1/2 tbsp dried oregano
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp nutritional yeast
juice of 1/2 lemon
1 1/4 c shredded zucchini
one jar of spaghetti sauce
pasta of your choice, cooked as directed on the package (Robbie had fettuccine and I had zucchini noodles.)
- Use a food processor with the shredding blade attached to shred the zucchini. I used almost two large-ish zucchini. Measure it out to be sure you have at least 1 and a 1/4 cups of shredded zucchini. Set aside.
- Remove the shredding blade and use the food processor to blend the drained and rinsed chickpeas, minced garlic and oats. I used pulse for 5 seconds three of four times to get everything finely chopped. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl.
- Add the basil, oregano, garlic powder, salt, and nutritional yeast to the chickpea mixture. Stir to combine with a spoon.
- Add the shredded zucchini and lemon juice. Stir to combine again.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
- Form the mixture into balls and place them, spaced apart, on the lined cookie sheet. I believe I had enough for 15 balls at about a rounded tablespoon each. Bake for 15 minutes then turn them over and bake for another 15 minutes.
- While the “meatballs” are baking, prepare the pasta and heat the spaghetti sauce.