These sweet and spicy ‘meatballs’ are a flavour explosion and they contain no meat! Perfect to whip up in a big batch, they are gluten free, vegan, dairy free and perfect for meatless Monday or a meat free meal!
When it comes to vegan sweet treats, it’s safe to say I’m quite comfortable.
Before reading further, check out these creations here which are all completely vegan.
That was me too. Chicken, meatballs and other products you’d never associate with the word ‘vegan’.
When Gardein reached out to collaborate together and try out two of their products, I was immediately drawn to their ultimate beefless grounds and their meatless meatballs. Back in Australia, I’d tried a similar vegan ground beef product and made the most amazing patties with them. Now that I was here and had these new products, I was keen to recreate.
So what exactly is Gardein? Garden is a plant based protein brand which offer quick and easy frozen foods. They are made from non GMO Soy and are all certified vegan. While Gardein do have products which are gluten free, unfortunately, their meatless meatballs are not. Solution? Recreate them using their ultimate beefless grounds which are! Winning!
So did they taste exactly like Gardein’s meatless meatballs?
No. Not even close.
I’ll leave those for Gardein and those whom are gluten free or want to try a sweet and spicy- I’ve got you covered!
These vegan sweet and spicy meatballs are a party in the mouth-Sweet, spicy AND salty. Although the prep is a little bit time consuming, it is so worth it. Although I’m not the biggest fan of dried fruits, they are a necessity in this recipe. They can be made in a huge batch and frozen and simply thawed for an easy weeknight meal or in a sub with salad!
Bonus? These can be made into full sized patties for burgers to throw between some burger buns like these. You know what? I’m kind of cringing that I didn’t whip these bad boys up and serve them to my mates when proving that vegan foods could be impressive.
Please read the instructions carefully when making these- Depending on the ingredients you end up using, you’ll need to play around with the flours/unsweetened milks. In terms of my flour recommendations, it is this one by Gluten Free Mama. Even back in Australia, I’d always need to play it by ear to adjust to form perfect meatballs which don’t crumble or aren’t too moist.
Make these Vegan Sweet and Spicy Meatballs and for those of you whom are full fledged meat eaters- Start adding a meatless meal to your plan each week…starting with these. Check out them raisins…..
- 1 cup Gardein meatless grounds (for non vegans/vegetarians, sub for ground meat of choice)
- 2 small sweet potatoes, mashed*
- 2 T chopped onions
- 2 T chopped carrots
- 1/4 cup gluten free oat flour (can sub for bread crumbs, oat bran, oatmeal, crushed up crackers)
- 1/2 cup raisins
- 1/2 cup baby spinach, chopped finely
- 1 tsp curry powder
- 1 tsp red pepper flakes
- 1 T mixed herbs
- salt to taste
- pepper to taste
- 1 flax egg- 1 T flax + 3 T water (Can sub for 1 egg if not vegan)
- 1- 2 T coconut flour, sifted (can sub for any flour)**
- Dairy free milk***
- Extra flour for minor dusting
- Oil for frying
- Sweet chilli sauce, for dipping
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the meatless grounds, sweet potatoes, carrots, onions, oat flour, raisins, spinach, curry powder, red pepper flakes, mixed herbs, salt and pepper and mix very well. Add the flax egg and stir into the mixture until fully incorporated.
- If mixture is still moist, add the flour 1 tablespoon at a time until a they can be formed comfortably into meatballs.
- If mixture is too crumbly, add dairy free milk 1 tablespoon at a time until mixture can be comfortably formed into meatballs.
- Heat a large frying pan very generously with oil and once hot, dust the meatballs very lightly in flour before pan frying for 3-4 minutes on each side, until golden. Repeat until all meatballs are cooked. Serve and cover with sweet chilli sauce, or condiment of choice.
- * Can be subbed for any mashed starch (potatoes, pumpkin, kabocha, etc)
- ** Please refer to directions for flour information
- *** Please refer to directions for milk instructions
- There are many outcomes for this recipe depending on what flour you use, whether you choose to add the egg or not.
- These can be baked in the oven but you'll need to ensure the meatballs remain intact by adding necessary flour.
Have you ever tried a Gardein product or something similar?
What is your spice tolerance? Mine is amazing. I need to go to a chilli festival.