5,771 Readers

Lentil Quinoa Meatballs

·
·
2 min read
Summary

Trying to eat less meat? You’ll want to try these Lentil Quinoa Meatballs. They’re a bit different than traditional meatballs in that the flavor is slightly different, but also in that you won’t be getting saturated fat, hormones, antibiotics, or any other unwanted ingredients that come with red meat. Instead, you’ll receive tons of fiber, plant-based protein, lots of phytonutrients, and vitamins and minerals found in the quinoa and lentils. What’s fantastic about this recipe is that it’s so versatile. Make them as a party appetizer, stuff them into an organic whole grain wrap, dip them in your favorite plant-based sauce, or top them on spaghetti squash for “spaghetti and meatballs.” Tell us how you enjoy them and what fun things you pair with them in the comments below.

Yields4 ServingsPrep Time20 minsCook Time30 minsTotal Time50 mins

Ingredients

 2 tbsp vegetable broth (unsalted, preferably homemade)
 1 cup onion (chopped)
 4 cloves garlic (minced)
 1 cup organic summer squash (yellow or green, grated)
 1 cup organic spinach (chopped)
 ½ cup sunflower seeds (raw, unsalted)
 1 cup lentils (green or brown, homecooked or BPA-free canned or packaged)
 2 tsp dried oregano
 2 tbsp basil (fresh, chopped)
 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
 ¼ cup kalamata olives (chopped)
 1 cup quinoa (cooked)
 ½ tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
 ¼ tsp salt (optional)
 ¼ tsp pepper (optional)

Directions

1

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

2

Heat the vegetable broth in a medium stovetop pan on medium heat. Add the onions and cook until translucent (about 3–5 minutes).

3

Stir in the garlic and squash and cook 1–2 minutes.

4

Mix in the spinach until slightly wilted. Remove from heat and set aside.

5

In a food processor, coarsely grind the sunflower seeds.

6

Add the onion squash mixture, half of the lentils (½ cup), oregano, basil, nutritional yeast, and olives. Blend until the mixture is smooth.

7

Scoop into a large bowl. Mix in the other ½ cup lentils, quinoa, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes, if using.

8

Scoop the mixture with a spoon into clean hands and roll to form a “meatball” about 1 ½” in diameter.

9

Place the meatballs on the parchment-lined baking sheet. You’ll have about 30 small meatballs.

10

Bake for 30 minutes or until crispy on the outside and soft in the middle.

11

Serve with your favorite tomato sauce or one of the suggested sauces, below!

Chef's Notes

Substitutions
Use ½ teaspoon of garlic powder in place of fresh garlic.

Red or white onion would work well in place of the yellow.

Use organic green or yellow squash.

Instead of spinach try collards, Swiss chard, or kale.

If you don’t have sunflower seeds, use walnuts.

Instead of quinoa, use organic short-grain brown rice.

How to enjoy
Stuff the meatballs in between organic whole-grain bread or a wrap, pile on the veggies, and hummus, and enjoy as a sandwich.

Enjoy them with just about any sauce — tomato, Kale Walnut Basil Pesto, Sweet and Smoky Romesco, Mouthwatering Avocado Cream, or a savory cashew cream.

Add them to a grain or salad bowl.

Make spaghetti squash and “meatballs.”

Double the recipe and bring them as an irresistible appetizer to a summer picnic.

Ingredients

 2 tbsp vegetable broth (unsalted, preferably homemade)
 1 cup onion (chopped)
 4 cloves garlic (minced)
 1 cup organic summer squash (yellow or green, grated)
 1 cup organic spinach (chopped)
 ½ cup sunflower seeds (raw, unsalted)
 1 cup lentils (green or brown, homecooked or BPA-free canned or packaged)
 2 tsp dried oregano
 2 tbsp basil (fresh, chopped)
 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
 ¼ cup kalamata olives (chopped)
 1 cup quinoa (cooked)
 ½ tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
 ¼ tsp salt (optional)
 ¼ tsp pepper (optional)

Directions

1

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

2

Heat the vegetable broth in a medium stovetop pan on medium heat. Add the onions and cook until translucent (about 3–5 minutes).

3

Stir in the garlic and squash and cook 1–2 minutes.

4

Mix in the spinach until slightly wilted. Remove from heat and set aside.

5

In a food processor, coarsely grind the sunflower seeds.

6

Add the onion squash mixture, half of the lentils (½ cup), oregano, basil, nutritional yeast, and olives. Blend until the mixture is smooth.

7

Scoop into a large bowl. Mix in the other ½ cup lentils, quinoa, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes, if using.

8

Scoop the mixture with a spoon into clean hands and roll to form a “meatball” about 1 ½” in diameter.

9

Place the meatballs on the parchment-lined baking sheet. You’ll have about 30 small meatballs.

10

Bake for 30 minutes or until crispy on the outside and soft in the middle.

11

Serve with your favorite tomato sauce or one of the suggested sauces, below!

Lentil Quinoa Meatballs