Meat-Less Meatballs Recipe

Meat-Less Meatballs Recipe
Staff Writer
"Meat" balls
Geri Salmon

"Meat" balls

It’s 2011. I wanted to try something new. Meatballs without the meat. I’m not saying they didn’t end up good, because with the right finesse and spice they eventually did, I’m just saying sometimes classics are better left unchanged.

On the upside, this version is vegetarian and diet-friendly.  The meat substitute I used has 0 grams of fat and only 70 calories per serving.  I paired the meatless balls with Shiritaki noodles, which are a great pasta alternative – only 20 calories, 0.5 grams of fat, and 3 grams of carbs per serving.

Ingredients

  • Olive oil
  • ½ jalapeño, finely chopped
  • 1 shallot, finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • ¾ pound Gimme Lean Ground Beef Style
  • 1 egg
  • Pinch of salt
  • Pinch of black pepper

Directions

Coat a hot pan with olive oil.  Sauté jalapeño, shallot, and garlic in the pan for a few minutes. Remove from the heat and add chopped parsley.

In a bowl, season the “meat” with salt and pepper. Combine all ingredients, cracking the egg directly into the mixture. Form the “meat” into ½ inch balls.

Reheat the pan over medium heat, with a generous coating of oil. Cook the balls for 8-10 minutes, turning them so they brown on all sides.

Serve hot with your favorite tomato sauce.

Meat Shopping Tip

Most cattle are fed a diet of grass until they are sent to a feedlot – where they are finished on corn. When possible, choose beef from cattle that are “100% grass fed” - it will be more expensive, but better for your health.

Meat Cooking Tip

The method used to cook beef is dependent on the cut. Cuts that are more tender, like filet mignon, should be cooked for a relatively short amount of time over high heat by grilling or sautéing. While less tender cuts, like brisket and short ribs, should be cooked for a longer time with lower heat by braising or stewing.