Vegan Lentil Meatballs (grain-free, meat-free)

Hooray for meatballs without the meat. No soy, no gluten, no seitan; simply made from lentils and almonds. These lentil meatballs are a new favorite around here; perfect to add to our Magical no-cook tomato sauce

lentil meatballs. vegan. high protein. simple to make. delicious. kids approved. grain-free.

In addition to being high in protein these meatballs are full of fiber. Each meatball has about 5 grams of protein. That's 20 grams in the bowl shown above. Add that to a bowl of pasta and you got all kinds of healthy "good" carbs, vitamin C, micronutrients, fiber, essential enzymes and protein. No dairy or meat needed. 

meatless lentil meatballs. 5g protein per ball. vegan. dairy-free. grain free. soy free.

These meatballs are so easy, no need to sauté any onions or garlic and the only fat I used was vegan butter. I'm obsessed with Miyoco's European style cultured vegan butter. Have you tried it yet? Holy moly. And it's Free of cholesterol, lactose, egg, gluten and palm oil and made without GMOs. 

I just threw all the meatless meatball ingredients into a food processor and once it turned into a dough paste type of thing it was ready to cook up. So simple. And you can play around with your own spices and herbs.  

vegan meatless meatballs. lentil protein. 5 grams protein in each meatball. grain-free.
Meatless meatballs. Homemade lentil meatballs made with fresh ingredients. 5 grams of protein in each ball. Dairy-free. Grain-free. Soy free.

These meatballs taste light and airy but also hearty and spicy. They are drop-the-mic delicious. Simple, fresh and easy to whip up. Tip: try using the Trader Joes already cooked lentils to save you time! If you do that, you just made your life a whole lot easier and dinner prep time so much more tolerable. 

Vegan meatless lentil meatballs. Dairy-free. Grain-free. High protein. Soy-free.

Your kids will love them, too. Store them in an airtight container and throw them in your kids' lunch boxes along with some tomato dipping sauce or leftover pasta. Eat them on top of salads or inside a big collard green like a taco. They are versatile little meatballs. 

dairy-free, soy-free, grain-free meatless lentil meatballs. high protein. simple fresh ingredients.

Lentil Meatballs Recipe

Yields approx 12-14 balls

Ingredients

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. 
  2. In a food processor bowl add all of the ingredients. 
  3. Pulse and scrape the ingredients over and over until you have a smooth dough. Not too wet and pasty but more like a clumpy dough. I know when my dough is ready because the dough starts to ball up and roll around in the food processor as one large blob. 
  4. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. 
  5. Remove dough by forming small balls using your hands. If it seems too wet (it shouldn't stick to your fingers) then add a touch more almond flour. Place balls onto the lined cookie sheet. 
  6. Before you bake them you'll first want to sauté / cook them in a large skillet using butter or olive oil. You will want to toss them to be sure they roll around and cook evenly. About 5 minutes or until they start to brown. 
  7. Place the balls back onto the parchment paper lined cookie sheet and bake the meatballs for about 30 minutes. Keep checking on them. You want them cooked all the way through. 
  8. In the meantime prep your noodles and marinara or your salad. 
  9. Once thoroughly cooked, let them cook before serving. 
  10. Store leftovers in the freezer until ready to use. Bake them at 375 degrees F until they are warmed all the way through. 

note: recipe adapted from http://minimalistbaker.com/easy-lentil-meatballs/. 

Butternut Squash {vegan} Baked Pasta Dish

I have made this 3 times this week. Ha. Once for work and then again because it was so tasty and easy to make. 

The first dish I started with was a butternut squash lasagna and then ended up as just a simple baked pasta. I'm definitely tired of the same old tomato sauce pasta that I make almost every week. It's really really good but I wanted something more festive for the Fall. 

Butternut Squash (vegan) Baked Pasta Recipe | gluten-free | plant-based

The sauce is creamy and naturally sweet. Best of all it's so easy to make. The most difficult part of this recipe is the homemade cheese and even that is a) not hard to make and b) you don't even need it. Instead you can buy some vegan ricotta or you can use real ricotta if you're not vegan. 

Butternut Squash (vegan) Baked Pasta Recipe | gluten-free | plant-based

The amount of vegetables in this dish makes it really healthy. It's not just a bowl of cheese and noodles. You can play around with the veggies in the dish as well. I subbed the zucchini one time for frozen cauliflower. And it turned out awesome. 

Onion

Butternut squash 

Zucchini

Spinach

Corn 

Brown rice 

Cashews

That's a lot of produce and plants right there. 

I'm excited to share with you this video I created - demonstrating how to make this dish from start to finish. If you like it, subscribe to my channel and stay tuned for more of these tutorials. I am going to do a few a month.  

Butternut Squash Baked Pasta Recipe

Serves 4 main dishes or 6 side dishes

BUTTERNUT SQUASH SAUCE INGREDIENTS

  • 4 cups butternut squashed (skinned, seeded and cut into cubes)
  • 2 cups yellow onion (skin removed and cut into large chunks)
  • 2 Tbls vegan butter
  • 1/2-3/4 cup (8 oz) vegetable broth
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 Tbsp miso paste
  • 1/2 tsp red chili flakes (optional)
  • 3/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 cup vegan sour cream 
  • 2 cloves raw garlic

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Cut open the butternut squash, cut off the thick skin and remove all the seeds. Cut remaining squash into large cubes. 
  3. Cut the onion in half. Remove the thin skin. Cut up into large chunks. 
  4. On a cookie sheet spread the butter around evenly. Place the raw chopped veggies on the cookie sheet. Sprinkle with salt. 
  5. Cook for 25 minutes. Check on the veggies from time to time because the onion can burn if you slice it to thin. Remember to keep the chunks large. 
  6. Meanwhile, add the rest of the ingredients to a high speed blender. Add then add the cooked veggies. 
  7. Blend on high until completely smooth and looks like a thick creamy sauce. You might need to add a tad more liquid (veg broth) depending on the desired thickness of the sauce. Remove and set aside.

BUTTERNUT SQUASH BAKED PASTA INGREDIENTS

  • 1/2 bag (8oz) of your favorite gluten-free pasta. I used Tinkyada shells
  • 1 cup frozen corn or fresh 
  • 1 zucchini thinly sliced or cut with a mandolin or peeler
  • 2 cups spinach
  • Butternut squash pasta sauce (recipe above)
  • 2 cups Vegan Queso sauce or fresh vegan ricotta (or even real ricotta cheese if you're not vegan)
  • fresh sage or thyme
  • pinch of sea salt and pepper for 
  • 1/2 cup veggie broth 

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (if you just made the butternut squash sauce, keep the oven on after you bake the squash and onion).
  2. In a baking dish of choice, layer about 3/4 cup of sauce on the bottom of the dish. Add pasta shells. 
  3. Top the shells with veggies. Sprinkle with some salt and pepper. 
  4. Add your cheese or cheese sauce on top of that. And add more of your veggies. Keep repeating steps 2-4 until you're out of noodles and out of sauce.
  5. Pour 1/2 cup water or veggie broth on the top of the baking dish before you cook it. 
  6. The only important rule here is that you cover the noodles completely in sauce. Don't leave dry noodles exposed.
  7. Bake for 30 minutes. The sides of the dish will start to brown when it is done baking. Test to be sure noodles are fully cooked before you let it cool and serve.  
Butternut Squash (vegan) Baked Pasta Recipe | gluten-free | plant-based

Raw Vegan Alfredo Sauce Over Kelp Noodles

I've been meaning to test out a few vegan Fettuccine Alfredo recipes lately but haven't really made it a priority because to be honest, I don't even know if I have ever really liked the traditional sauce. I can't put my finger on why it always turned me off, because I was a macaroni and cheese addict. You'd think they would go hand in hand for me. But nope

Pregnancy + fresh lettuce tacos + mac and cheese

Check out my post about pregnancy cravings and foods where I also share my fresh lettuce cup taco lunch recipe

Click on over to PUREmamas section of the blog to get the recipe and the story. 

Also, if you didn't get a chance yet to see my vegan creamy shells + cheese recipe, it's not too late...read more about it over at the Honest Company blog. This recipe is creamy, "cheesy" and really hits the spot when it comes to mac-and-cheese cravings. However, this unique recipe is dairy-free. Yep, that's right, dairy free mac and cheese recipe. Mmmmmmmm.  

Zucchini Pasta with Olive Tapenade

I'm over at the Honest Company again this week, guest blogging! Today I'm featuring one of my latest favorites - an olive tapenade over zucchini noodles. It's amazing! (I got the idea from chef perkunas food delivery! He makes one that is to die for. It's different but has lots of green olives. YUM and I'm obsessed. Try it!) 

olivecaperpasta.png
olivecaperpasta5.png

This dinner or lunch salad is so unique and full of flavor. The combination of flavors is unlike what you have ever tasted. 

This Zucchini Pasta with Olive Tapenade recipe is a must-try! 

For full recipe and photos, go to the Honest Company blog!