Vegan Mushroom-Walnut ‘Meat’balls

These tangy treats are delicious when served over pasta or on bread as a sub sandwich! Include meat; about half a pound of ground beef, lamb or chicken would work with this version.

  • ½ tsp Extra-virgin olive oil, more for drizzling
  • ½ Yellow onion, about 1 cup chopped
  • 8 oz Mushrooms, de-stemmed, chopped
  • 1 cup Black beans, cook drained and rinsed
  • 2 lg Garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 tbs Balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbs Tamari
  • ½ cup Walnuts
  • 1½ cups Brown rice, cooked
  • ½ tsp Chili powder
  • ½ tsp Onion powder
  • ½ tsp Sea salt
  • ½ tsp Black pepper, freshly ground
  • 1 cup Panko bread crumbs
  • 2 cups Marinara sauce, jarred or homemade
  • ½ cup Fresh basil, chopped
  • Several handfuls of arugula, optional
  • Vegan parmesan cheese, optional

  1. In large skillet, heat ½ teaspoon of olive oil over medium heat. Add onion and cook until soft, about 2 minutes. Add mushrooms and pinches of salt and pepper, and cook until browned and soft, 5 to 8 minutes. Add ½ cup black beans, garlic, the balsamic vinegar and tamari sauce, and cook for 2 minutes or until everything is well-browned and soft. Remove from the heat and let cool slightly.
  2. In food processor, pulse the walnuts. Add mushroom mixture and pulse until just combined (do not puree). Add remaining ½ cup of black beans and pulse briefly. Transfer mixture to a large bowl and stir in brown rice, chili powder, onion powder, salt and pepper. Mix until combined. Taste and adjust seasonings.
  3. Preheat the oven to 400°F and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Spread panko breadcrumbs onto a plate. Form mixture into 18, 1½ inch balls and gently roll in the crumbs to make cohesive balls. Place on baking sheet and refrigerate for 20 minutes or overnight.
  4. Drizzle generously with olive oil and bake for 35 to 40 minutes, carefully flipping halfway through.
  5. Heat marinara sauce in a skillet and add meatballs. Heat until just warmed through and serve immediately on pasta or bread with parmesan.

Serves 6 | Prep Time 60-75 mins