Tuesday, July 16, 2024
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Italian Plant-Based Meatballs

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Elevate your culinary experience with these Italian-inspired plant-based meatballs that redefine the art of savoury indulgence. Crafted from a blend of hearty brown lentils, diced brown onions, and aromatic garlic, these meatballs celebrate plant-based goodness. Including earthy button mushrooms and ground linseed (flaxseeds) introduces a delightful depth of flavour and a perfect binding element. These plant-based wonders are then expertly seasoned with Italian bread crumbs and a burst of freshness from freshly chopped parsley, creating a symphony of Italian flavours in every bite.

The brown lentils serve as the anchor of these meatballs, imparting a meaty texture and a rich, satisfying taste. Combined with the sweetness of diced brown onions and the piquancy of garlic, these meatballs offer a blend of familiar and exotic tastes. The addition of button mushrooms not only enhances the umami profile but also contributes to the meatball’s texture, resulting in a dish that’s not just delicious but also nutritionally dense and satisfying.

Imbued with a medley of Italian-inspired spices and the earthy essence of linseeds (flaxseeds), these meatballs are lovingly crafted to provide a wholesome and hearty alternative to traditional meat-based recipes. The combination of Italian bread crumbs and fresh parsley brings a crispy exterior and a burst of herbaceous aroma, culminating in a plant-based culinary delight that can stand proudly on any Italian dinner table. Whether served alongside pasta or as a standalone dish, these Italian plant-based meatballs are a testament to the innovation and creativity that can be achieved in plant-forward cooking.

Italian Plant-based 'Meatballs'

Catherine BarclayCatherine Barclay
These Italian air-fried 'meatballs' are crammed with flavour and very filling. It's a great meal for a cold winter night. Created with mushrooms, lentils, Italian herbed bread crumbs and a good kick of garlic.
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 2 people
Calories 1042 kcal


  • 1 Air Fryer


  • 1 can brown lentils drained
  • 2 brown onions diced
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 3 button mushrooms sliced
  • 1 tbsp ground linseeds (flaxseeds)
  • 1 cup italian bread crumbs
  • ¼ cup fresh parsley chopped


  • Create a flax egg with 1 tbsp of ground flaxseed and 2 ½ tbsp hot water. Place aside to set.
  • Saute in a pan with a little of either water or vege stock the onions, garlic and mushrooms until soft.
  • Add sauteed ingredients into a food processor with all other ingredients, including the flax egg. Pulse to combine. You might need to scrape the contents from the sides to make sure all is combined.
  • Make balls from the mix around the size of a golf ball and place them into the tray of the air fryer.
  • Cook in the air fryer at 180°C for around 15 mins, stopping halfway through to turn the balls over.
  • Heat in a saucepan your favourite bolognese sauce. In a second saucepan, cook the whole wheat spaghetti following the packet instructions.
  • Serve the 'meatballs' on a plate of greens, whole wheat spaghetti and coated with the bolonaise sauce.


Calories: 1042kcalCarbohydrates: 182gProtein: 66gFat: 6gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3gMonounsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 1mgSodium: 825mgPotassium: 2490mgFiber: 70gSugar: 13gVitamin A: 833IUVitamin C: 32mgCalcium: 276mgIron: 20mg
Keyword plantbased, vegan
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
Catherine Barclay
Catherine Barclay
Normally you might find me behind the coding of our sites but over the years I have become much more concerned about what has been happening in the kitchen as well - families do that for all of us don't they? Background experience is in Account Management and Web Development but as my passion has grown for WFPB so has my desire to speak out.

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