It’s a cloudy Saturday morning and I’m writing all snuggled up on the couch, in sweats, hair in a messy bun and OC Housewives on in the background.
Sort of dreamy, no?!
I like working on Saturday mornings because it feels socially acceptable to have the tv on in the background ha.
Cozy and comforting is all I’ve been wanting and craving this week.
So, lots of snuggles and warming recipes like these Veggie Chickpea “Meatballs” have been on the agenda. The drop in temperature has me in the mood for all things Fall, which is probably super annoying to some people because it’s not Fall yet (it’s only Labor Day weekend) but all the littles went back to school and that’s what I associate the next season with. I can’t help myself! Plus, I feel it in my bones that summer is quickly fading away when I wake up to that certain chill in the air.
I know you guys know what I mean!
I also blame this on Target and Home Goods because somehow, everything I see while shopping determines how I should live my life. LOL.
How do they do that?? They’re scary good at convincing me I NEED the cozy coffee cup and white pumpkin candle and comfy knit sweater and who knows what else.
I mean, everyone lives their life by what Target has on display.
It’s totally normal.
Back to cozy and comforting, which perfectly describes these Veggie Chickpea “Meatballs”. If you’ve been following me on social media, you’ll know about my latest obsession with lentil pasta. I’m not the only one! I got the idea from Lauryn of The Skinny Confidential and so many other bloggers are crazy about this magical pasta too – and for good reason! It’s packed with plant protein, fiber and iron and could not be any more DELISH.
I swear, if you haven’t tried it yet, YOU MUST. Lentil pasta is popping up everywhere in the stores. Why not pack in a punch of extra nutrition where we can?!
And what better to pair the pasta with than vegan meatballs! There’s no better time to share a heart-healthy recipe for homemade veggie balls.
What are the main ingredients?!
Breadcrumbs (buy gluten free breadcrumbs or use ground up gluten free oats!)
These plant based meatballs are simple, made in the food processor, and baked in the oven until golden brown (or you can fry in a pan), but still soft on the inside. The whole family will gobble them right up! I imagine they freeze well but I haven’t tried freezing them. This recipe will make 12-14 meatballs, depending on what size you roll them into. Perfect for a few lunches or dinners throughout the week, or to feed your family.
I’m so excited for you to try them!
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil, for sautéing
- 1/3 white onion, chopped small
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 cup sunflower seeds
- 1/2 cup breadcrumbs (sub for gluten free breadcrumbs or gluten free oats)
- 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
- 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
- 3/4 teaspoon sea salt and black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
- 2 medium carrots, quartered
- 1 small zucchini, quartered
- 1 cup kale (or spinach)
- 1/2 cup fresh basil (or 2 teaspoons dried)
- 1 15 oz. can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- Heat coconut oil on medium-heat in a pan on the stove, until hot. Add in onion and sauté until translucent, about 4-5 minutes, then stir in garlic, cook for 1-2 minutes and turn off heat.
- preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Grease a baking sheet with coconut oil (or use parchment paper).
- In food processor, combine sunflower seeds, breadcrumbs, nutritional yeast, Italian seasoning, sea salt, pepper and cayenne. Blend until mixture becomes a fine consistency and transfer to a large bowl.
- Next, in food processor, combine carrots, zucchini, kale and fresh basil. Blend/pulse until chopped up small, but not watery. You may have to scrape down the sides from time to time. Transfer into the same large bowl.
- Now blend up the chickpeas until sticky when pressed together between two fingers. This will hold the meatballs together. Then transfer into the same bowl and start mixing the ingredients together by hand. Then start squeezing the mixture until it begins to stick together like cookie dough.
- Roll into golf-ball sized meatballs (about 12-14) and place on baking sheet.
- Bake for 10 minutes then turn them over and bake for 8-10 more minutes.
- Serve over lentil pasta with your favorite sauce.
- You can also fry them in a pan until golden brown on all sides.
- I have no tried freezing them, but if you do, please leave us a comment below!
Also, I acquired all of these ingredients from Whole Foods using Instacart. Have you heard of them?!
Instacart is a same-day grocery delivery service that I’ve been dying to try and is seriously addicting because you shop for everything you need online – and it’s delivered to your door within a couple hours, or you can choose a time. It couldn’t be any easier and they deliver from multiple stores in your area!
Find out what stores use instacart in your area here.
**Use my code ‘glowingfridge’ for $10 off and free delivery on your first instacart order!!**