I created these paleo no-meat meatballs when we were looking for an awesome dinner that would excite a dedicated carnivore. There is a deep savouriness of well browned mushrooms that lifts these meatless meatballs to new flavour heights with the parsley, spices and the richness of nutritional yeast.The texture of the paleo breadcrumbs and pea protein flakes round these out perfectly.
Some Paleo Cooking Ideas and Tips
This recipe calls for paleo breadcrumbs. I find I always have plenty as I bake a loaf of my Paleo Sandwich Bread regularly so I save all the offcuts or leftovers in the freezer to make breadcrumbs.
Once I have a decent amount of leftover paleo bread I will take it our of the freezer, roughly break the bread into pieces on a backing tray and dry in the over at about 100ºC for an hour or two until it is dry. Once it is dry I roughly crumb in a food processor and put in airtight container. If I will use it right away I will store in the refrigerator of if not in the next few days I return to the freezer to use as needed.
I take the time to gather and weigh the ingredients before I get started with making the meatless meatballs.
Now that all your fresh ingredients are chopped and diced you can fire-up your stove to medium-high heat and start cooking. Fry off the mushrooms first in high quality plant oil. I prefer to cook with macadamia oil, it has a light nutty flavour and high smoke point. Cook the mushrooms down to cook off the water and brown them.
We are wanting to concentrate the depth of the flavours of the vegetable. Once you have the mushrooms starting to brown, add in the onion and cook until they are translucent and start to brown slightly. Add the crushed garlic then remove immediately from the heat and allow to cook, off the heat, for another minute. Now set this aside to cool slightly before you proceed.
Follow the full recipe and directions below for all the details. This recipe shows you all you need to know to make these moist, chewy, meatless meatballs. To make the Classic Italian Tomato Sauce follow the directions on this recipe page link.
I don’t like to fry food in oil, I prefer to bake. I am not a fan of that fatty feeling I get when I eat fried food. Also, I find it wastes a lot of oil. I have found that I can bake almost all of the food most recipes ask you to fry. When oven baking foods that are normally fried, the secret is giving the food a light spray with a good quality oil spray so the food will still brown really well.
When you are ready to make the meatballs grab a baking tray and line with a sheet of baking paper. Now you can shape tablespoon sized balls and place them out on the baking paper. You should get around 30 paleo no-meat meatballs from one batch.
Preheat the oven to 230ºC. Place the try in the oven and bake for 12 minutes to brown the balls. Once they are baked remove them from the oven and set them aside.
Get your medium size baking dish and lay out a single layer of the paleo meatless meatballs. Once all the meatless meatballs are layered out spoon the three cups of classic Italian tomato sauce over the balls. Now return the baking tray to the oven and bake for another 45 minutes or until the sauce has reduced and the the paleo meatless meatballs have browned edges.
There are so many ways to enjoy eating these paleo meatless meatballs. Try making a spaghetti and meatless meatballs. Serve over mashed sweet potatoes or with a side of roasted vegetables.
Veatballs – The Meat-Less Meatballs
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 400 g fresh mushrooms finely chopped
- 1 pinch salt
- 1 tbsp high quality plant oil
- 1 medium brown onion finely dices
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 2 ½ cup Pea Protein Textured Flakes
- 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
- ⅓ cup Paleo bread crumbs I use home made
- ⅓ cup chopped flat-leaf Italian parsley, packed
- 2 large eggs separated
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 pinch ground black pepper to taste
- 1 pinch cayenne pepper or to taste
- ½ tsp oregano
Sauce for Serving
- 3 cups Italian Tomato Sauce
- 1 tbsp Shredded Nutigiano or Nut based parmigiano
- 1 tbsp chopped flat-leaf Italian parsley, to taste
- Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms to the hot oil, sprinkle with salt, and cook and stir until liquid from mushrooms has evaporated. Stir butter into mushrooms, reduce heat to medium, and cook and stir mushrooms until golden brown, about 5 minutes.
- Stir onion into mushrooms and cook, stirring often, until onion is translucent about 5 minutes. Remove skillet from heat and stir garlic into mushroom mixture until fragrant, about 1 minute. Transfer mixture into a mixing bowl.
- Mix oats into mushroom mixture until thoroughly combined. Gently stir 1 ounce Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese into mixture. Add bread crumbs, 1/4 cup parsley, and 1 egg; season with salt, black pepper, cayenne pepper, and oregano. Mix together with a fork until crumbly. Stir in remaining 1 egg. Mixture should hold together when pressed.
- Cover bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 4 hours. For best flavor and texture, refrigerate overnight.
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees F (230 degrees C). Line a baking sheet with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper.
- Form mixture into small meatballs using a 2-tablespoon scoop. Roll meatballs lightly between your hands until smooth, if desired; arrange meatballs on prepared baking sheet.
- Bake in the preheated oven until meatballs are lightly golden brown, 12 to 15 minutes.
- Bring pasta sauce to a boil in a large saucepan; reduce heat to low. Gently stir meatballs into sauce until coated. Simmer meatballs in sauce until cooked through, 45 minutes to 1 hour. Transfer to a serving bowl and garnish with 1 tablespoon Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese and 1 tablespoon parsley.