Lentil Mushroom ‘Meatballs’ (Vegan)

With spring teasing us and winter seeming endless in Montreal, I’ve been craving comfort foods and pasta seems to be on the top of that list.  One of my son’s favourite meals is spaghetti, so I thought it would be an interesting challenge to add meatballs to our spaghetti, minus the meat and in a super healthy way.   

I’m also entering these lentil mushroom meatballs in the Best of Main Dishes in Canadian Lentils Recipe Revelation Challenge! If you like this recipe, it would be so appreciated if you would go to their Facebook page and ‘like’ my recipe.  The prizes are incredible, the biggest one being $2000!  

Vegan Lentil Meatballs

Vegan Lentil Mushroom Meatballs

I thought back to the traditional recipes I recreated to be meat-free, such as my Good Shepperd’s Pie  and realized lentils are a delicious, healthy substitute that work really well.   These ‘meatballs’ are savoury and satisfying and can be incorporated into your spaghetti dishes or even in a pita sandwich or sub.  They also make delicious leftovers, tasting even better after a little while!IMG_4188-2

IMG_4196-2I took my time making these on a Sunday afternoon, since they yield about 15 meatballs, I figured they are perfect for weeknight meals and work lunches.  I still haven’t really mastered cooking up a storm on the weekends to make my weekdays a little easier, but with my son starting school this fall, I know I’ll have no choice but to start!

Vegan Lentil Meatballs

Lentil Mushroom Meatballs (Vegan)
Yields 15
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Prep Time
40 min
Cook Time
30 min
Prep Time
40 min
Cook Time
30 min
Ingredients
  1. 2 flax eggs (2 tablespoons flax meal + 6 tablespoons water)
  2. 1 cup dried green lentils, rinsed and picked over
  3. 1 bay leaf
  4. 2 cups vegetable broth
  5. 8 ounces cremini mushrooms, washed and sliced
  6. ½ cup old-fashioned oats
  7. ½ cup flat-leaf parsley leaves
  8. 1 teaspoon dried sage
  9. 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  10. 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
  11. ½ teaspoon dried thyme
  12. ½ teaspoon dried terragon
  13. 2 tablespoons olive oil
  14. 1 medium white onion, chopped
  15. 4 garlic cloves, minced
  16. 3 tablespoons red wine
  17. 1 tablespoon tamari soy sauce
  18. kosher sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Begin by preparing your flax egg. Grind flax seeds in a coffee grinder, you need about 1 1/2 tablespoons of flax seeds to end up with 2 tablespoons flax meal. Pour 2 tablespoons flax meal into a small bowl, top with 6 tablespoons of water and whisk with a fork for a few minutes. Place in the fridge for use later.
  3. In a small saucepan, combine lentils, bay leaf, and vegetable broth. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes. You want your lentils to be al dente.
  4. Remove from heat, drain, and discard the bay leaf.
  5. In a food processor, combine the lentils with the mushrooms, oats, parsley and spices. Pulse, making sure not to overdo it and end up with a mushy mixture. See photo for texture you want.
  6. In a large skillet over medium heat, warm the olive oil. Add the chopped onion and sauté for 5 minutes, or until translucent. Add the garlic and continue to sauté for another minute or two. Add the lentil-mushroom mixture to the skillet and cook for another 5 minutes, stirring often.
  7. Add red wine and soy sauce to skillet. Continue to cook, stirring often, until liquid has been absorbed. Add salt and pepper to taste, stir.
  8. Remove from heat and allow to cool until it is comfortable to handle.
  9. Remove flax eggs from the fridge and pour into a medium sized bowl. Add the lentil-mushroom mixture and mix well to combine.
  10. Use your hands to form a golf ball-sized ball. Place each 'meatball' onto the baking sheet, leaving an inch of space between each one. You should have about 15 'meatballs'.
  11. Bake for 30 minutes, or until golden brown.
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I hope you all had a nice, relaxing weekend, and a Happy St. Patty’s Day to you all today!   

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Vegan Spaghetti + Meatballs

One of my favourite things about blogging is the amazing community of fellow foodies.  The beautiful photos and creative recipes have me sucked in for hours.  When I first saw this recipe over at An Ode to Mung Beans, I thought it looked mouthwatering and was compelled to give it a shot!  Well, it is a fantastic vegan meatball!  My (almost) four year old son devoured them, as did the hubby and I.  Thank you Sammy for the amazing recipe.  Here are a few photos of our dinner.
The full recipe is here Vegan Spaghetti n’ Meatballs – ‘Pork Style’.  I encourage you to peruse through her entire blog!

Vegan meatballs

Vegan Spaghetti & Meatballs

Vegan Spaghetti & Meatballs

Vegan Meaty Spaghetti Sauce

This is one of those go-to recipes which satisfies the toughest critics, omnivores, and preschoolers alike.  I like to make a pretty big batch and freeze it for lazy days.  Spaghetti can definitely lack in the nutritional department, so I try to incorporate as many healthy elements as possible into this dish.  For one, using gluten-free spinach fettuccini noodles.  These noodles do not contain wheat, rather, they are made with brown rice flour and spinach.  Secondly, I use textured soy protein (TSP), which is a very versatile high protein, high fiber meat substitute.  It is so simple to add to your dishes, because it will take the flavour of whatever it is you are cooking.  Since it is dehydrated, it needs to cook along with your dish or be reconstituted in water ahead of time.

Also, in this recipe I used canned tomatoes; in the summer time we use fresh tomatoes straight out of our garden.

Here is the recipe:

Bob Red Mill Vegetable Soy Protein

Vegetarian ‘Meaty’ Spaghetti Recipe

Makes 8 servings

Ingredients:

  • 2 cans good quality whole tomatoes
  • 1 cup organic TSP (textured soy protein)
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons dried oregano
  • approx. 10 basil leaves, roughly torn
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon organic raw sugar
  • 1 teaspoon chili pepper flakes
  • a pinch of kosher sea salt and freshly ground pepper

Vegetarian Spaghetti Sauce

Directions:

  • Heat olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat.
  • Sauté garlic, stirring occasionally until slightly browned.
  • Add the tomatoes and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat, and let simmer.
  • Add oregano, basil, chili flakes, sugar (to cut the acidity) and salt and pepper.
  • After about 10 minutes, using a handheld blender, blend the tomatoes into a sauce.
  • Add the TSP.  Do not blend this.
  • Let simmer for 30 minutes.
  • Boil pasta noodles according to directions.
  • Remove from heat and drain pasta.
  • Plate pasta and top with spaghetti sauce.
  • Serve and enjoy!

Vegetarian 'Meaty' Spaghetti