Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Spicy Lentil "Meat"balls

It's about time I came around with a new recipe! :-) Last week I saw a tweet that linked to a recipe for lentil "meat"balls. I was totally intrigued! I didn't have all the ingredients that specific recipe called for, so I did some research online and combined a couple of recipes to make my own. They turned out well! These are pretty spicy, so you may want to use less red chile powder for a milder batch. Also, they turned out a little softer than I expected, but they still tasted great crumbled in the tomato sauce!
Lentils are such a versatile food. Did you know they are a bean? I used the think that they were another type of grain - but no! The benefit of lentils over other types of dried beans is that they cook up so much faster! In one cup of these little beans you get (nutritiondata.com):
  • Only 230 calories!
  • 16 grams of fiber!
  • 18 grams of protein
  • 37% of DRI for Iron!
Lets make some lentils, shall we?
All the ingredients together and ready for a quick puree!
Ready for the oven. :-)
Simmer briefly in tomato sauce.
Spicy Lentil "Meat"balls
(Adapted from Simple Vegan Cooking recipe)
- 1 cup of dried brown lentils
- 2 1/2 cups of vegetable broth
- 1 cup of whole wheat bread crumbs (I made my own by toasting a few slices of bread and sending them through the food processor until crumbly.)
- 1/2 cup of rolled oats
- 1/2 onion, chopped
- 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 handful spinach
- 1/2 teaspoon red chile powder
- 2 tablespoons Worchestershire
- 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
- Salt and Pepper to taste

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Bring the lentils and broth to a simmer in a medium sized saucepot on the stove. Once simmering, cover and cook until broth has been absorbed by the lentils. It should take ~25 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, combine the onion, oats, breadcrumbs, spinach and spices in a food processor.
4. Add 1/2 of the prepared lentils to the other ingredients in the food processor. Puree until smooth. Pour into bowl with the rest of the lentils and mix well.
5. Form mixture into 1-inch balls and place on a baking sheet. Bake for 25 minutes or until the outsides begin to brown a little.
6. To serve, add to your tomato sauce as you simmer it before using on your pasta. Pour over whole wheat noodles and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.


  1. I love brown and yellow lentils. They are so easy to cook. Taste wise, I'm not a fan of whole wheat pasta especially the 100% versions. I prefer the pasta with added bran over the 1000% whole wheat. I have made meatless meat balls using chickpeas and black eye before, but not lentils. Great recipe!

    1. I haven't seen the pasta with added bran before, it's sounds good though! I'll have to check the store for it next time I am there. :-)

  2. Deb why would you think they were a grain?! You're silly!