I don’t know about you but pasta is a staple in our house. One of the easiest recipes to make with pasta is spaghetti, but what is spaghetti without the meatballs? Before going vegan, I made them with ground turkey. Now, I make them with lentils! One of the perks about making them with lentils versus raw meat is that you can taste test as you are making it to see if you need to add anything. That being said, this was a bit of trial and error getting the right consistency and the right flavor. However, I’ve finally gotten it hubby and kid approved, so it is time to share the recipe!
-2 cups cooked lentils
-2 TB gluten free flour blend (This is what I use: Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free 1-to-1 Baking Flour, 22 OZ)
-1 TB minced garlic
-1/2 cup gluten free panko or regular rolled oats
-2 TB maple syrup
-1 1/2 TB Italian Seasoning
-1/2 TB Basil
-2 tsp powdered onion
-1 tsp sea salt
-1 tsp vegan worchestire (You can buy it: Annie’s Organic Worcestershire Sauce Vegan 6.25 fl oz Bottle or make it yourself: https://www.karissasvegankitchen.com/vegan-worcestershire-sauce/)
-A couple of sprinkles of red cayenne pepper (less than an 1/8 of a tsp)
Start by cooking your lentils and preheating your oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. I typically cook 1 cup of lentils with 3 cups of water. For more information on how to cook lentils, check out this helpful blog post on it: https://www.acouplecooks.com/lentil-to-water-ratio/. Please note I don’t add salt to mine when I cook them. Once the lentils are cooked and drained, smash them with a potato masher and then add in all the other ingredients, mixing until well combined. If you have a food processor and want to save time, instead of smashing the lentils manually, you can simply throw the lentils and all the other ingredients into the food processor and let it do the work for you. If you use rolled oats instead of panko, I highly recommend using the food processor to help break up the oats and provide a better texture overall for the meatless meatballs. However, I have made them with oats without using the food processor and they still came out fine, aside from the texture being a bit chunky. Once you have combined the ingredients, lightly grease a baking sheet, your hands, and a tablespoon measuring utensil. This will help the lentil meatball mixture not stick to your hands or anything else for that matter when you are working to roll them into balls. Scoop out the lentil meatball mixture using the tablespoon, measuring out a leveled off tablespoon per meatless meatball. Once you have scooped out all the lentil mixture (you should have about 30 total), roll them into balls. Set them on your baking sheet, evenly spaced out (at least an inch between each ball) and cook at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 15 minutes.
If you want you can flip them about halfway through the cooking time so that they are evenly cooked on each side, but I usually don’t because they turn out fine without that extra step. Once they are done baking, let them cool for a few minutes and then serve! They are great in spaghetti or anything else that requires meatballs.
Makes 30 meatless meatballs
If you need a sauce recipe for your spaghetti, check out my bell pepper sauce: http://herbivorehomemaker.com/bell-pepper-spaghetti-sauce/
Note: If you want to make this sugar free, you can use water in place of maple syrup.
Pro-tip: If you have the time, make the lentil meatball mixture at least a couple hours before and let it cool in the fridge before rolling it into balls. When it is cooled it is easier to roll into balls. That being said, if you don’t have time to do this, no worries, they will still turn out fine.
If you have any questions or comments, let me know! As always, if you make this and you are active on social media, please share how it turned out and be sure to tag me @herbivore_homemaker on Instagram and/or @herbivorebekah on Twitter.