These homemade vegan meatballs are a healthy alternative to storebought veggie meatballs. They are made with simple ingredients and flavorful as can be! You can even freeze them for later meals.
I love meatless meatballs. They’re the ultimate comfort food – the kind of protein-packed meal that satisfies everyone.
Storebought vegan meatballs are convenient, but nothing stands up to the whole food ingredients found in these homemade vegan meatballs.
The best part? You can easily freeze these veggie meatballs and keep on hand for a quick weeknight meal! And they hold together well – no crumbly mess here! Byee-bye storebought veggie balls.
These vegan meatballs are
- Easy to make
- Made in just 30 minutes
- Oven-baked (with a pan-frying option)
- Made with classic meatball ingredients- just minus the meat!
What’s in these veggie balls?
These vegan meatballs are made with whole food ingredients and a few classic meatball seasonings.
Olive oil sauteed mushrooms, onions, and reduced sodium soy sauce. This combination provides the umami core of the meatballs; the flavor that takes it from bean ball to meat ball!
Italian seasoning. Choose a premade seasoning from the store or make your own. Italian seasoning usually contains basil, oregano, rosemary and thyme.
Breadcrumbs. Choose traditional breadcrumbs, or try Italian breadcrumbs for an extra herb-packed meatball.
Chickpeas. It’s not a vegan meatball without a little plant-based protein.
Worcestershire sauce. This classic meatball ingredient is traditionally made with anchovies, but store-brand versions are usually vegan. Check the ingredient label to ensure the Worcestershire sauce is vegan.
Nutritional yeast. AKA the secret ingredient!
Flax egg. Made with flaxseed and liquid, this “egg” helps hold the meatballs together and prevents any crumbling.
How to make vegan meatballs
Step 1. (Preheat oven to 350 degrees F). Heat oil over medium heat in a large saute pan, then add saute chopped mushrooms, diced onions and soy sauce, sauteing until softened. This will take about 5 minutes. Drain off the extra liquid.
Step 2. Make a flax egg by combining flaxseed and non-dairy milk, let rest for 3 minutes. Add to a food processor with all of the other ingredients.
Step 3. Pulse the ingredients until mostly broken down. You want a mostly smooth mix with some small pieces of chickpea or mushroom remaining.
Step 4. Form into 12 tablespoon sized balls and place on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Bake for 15-18 minutes at 350 degrees F.
Step 5. The meatballs are ready when lightly browned and no longer raw on the inside.
- For a richer flax egg, use unsweetened non-dairy milk instead of water. If you don’t have non-dairy milk available, water will also work.
- For a crispy outer meatball, spray lightly with cooking spray before baking. This will make the vegan meatballs extra crispy!
What to serve with vegan meatballs
Classic spaghetti and meatballs is a perfect way to serve these vegan meatballs. Choose your favorite spaghetti- whether it’s protein pasta, whole wheat or white- and marinara sauce.
Add a serving of broccoli or your favorite veg for an extra veggie-packed meal.
Looking for more vegan dinner recipes?
- Baked Tofu with Peanut Sauce
- Vegetarian Black Bean Burgers
- Hummus Pasta with Lemon and Arugula
- Vegan Tater Tot Green Bean Casserole
The Best Vegan Meatballs
- 1 can (15 ounces) chickpeas drained
- 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon olive oil divided
- 4 ounces white or crimini mushrooms
- 1/2 cup diced yellow onion from 1/2 medium onion
- 1 tablespoon reduced sodium soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed
- 2 tablespoons non-dairy milk or water
- 1 cup plain breadcrumbs
- 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
- 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- cooking spray (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.
- Roughly chop the mushrooms and dice the onion. In a medium pan, heat 1 teaspoon olive oil over medium heat. Once hot, add the mushrooms, onion and 1 tablespoon soy sauce. Saute for 5 minutes, or until mushrooms are softened. Drain excess liquid.
- To make a flax egg, mix together 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed and 2 tablespoons non-dairy milk in a small bowl. Let rest for 3 minutes.
- Combine chickpeas, flax egg, breadcrumbs, Italian seasoning, nutritional yeast, Worcestershire sauce, salt, 1 tablespoon olive oil, and sauteed onion in mushroom in a food processor with a standard blade attachment. Pulse until mostly broken down. Some small bits of chickpea or mushroom should still exist.
- Use clean hands to roll the meatball mixture into 12 roughly tablespoon sized balls. Line up the meatballs on the sheet pan. Spray lightly with cooking spray for an extra crispy/browned result (optional).
- Bake for 15-18 minutes in 350-degree oven. They are done when lightly browned on the outside and no longer mushy on the inside.
- Worcestershire sauce: Check the ingredients label to make sure your worcestershire sauce is vegan/vegetarian. Most store-brand versions are made without anchovies, making them vegan.
- How to freeze: You can freeze either cooked or uncooked. Make layers between each ball using parchment or wax paper (this prevents them from sticking together). I prefer to freeze baked, then reheat in a pan with a bit of oil. If reheating from raw, add an extra 5 minutes to the oven baking time.
- To make gluten-free: Choose gluten free breadcrumbs in place of traditional breadcrumbs. Gluten-free tamari can be used in place of soy sauce.
- To pan-fry: Lightly coat a skillet with cooking oil. Saute the meatballs over medium heat, turning often to evenly brown. The meatballs can lose their circular shape with frequent turning, but you can just pat them back into shape with the back of a spatula.
- *Note that I have not tried deep-frying these meatballs.