Vegetarian "Meatballs" And Mushroom Gravy Recipe

meatballs and gravy over potatoes
meatballs and gravy over potatoes - Miriam Hahn/Tasting Table

If you're a meatball fan but don't eat meat and aren't a fan of pre-made meat substitutes, you may be on the lookout for a "meatball" recipe made with plant-based ingredients. We're here to make your day and tell you that this recipe for vegetarian "meatballs" with mushroom gravy is for you. The meatball mixture blends quickly in a food processor and the mushroom gravy is a one-pan wonder that can also be used on lentil loaves and veggie burgers.

Wellness coach and recipe developer Miriam Hahn brings us this recipe, and she's especially a fan of the clever use of chickpeas to get that desirable meaty texture, without actually using any meat. "Chickpeas are often used to replicate burger and meatball recipes in the vegetarian world and for good reason. They're loaded with plant-based protein, have a meat-like texture when cooked, and when paired with other essentials, they hold together well," she says. "This recipe is delicious on its own or served over steamy hot, buttered mashed potatoes!"

Read more: Ingredient Substitutes Every Vegan Should Know

Gather The Ingredients For Vegetarian Meatballs And Mushroom Gravy

vegetarian meatball ingredients
vegetarian meatball ingredients - Miriam Hahn/Tasting Table

To make this recipe, you'll need lots of pantry staples that you might already have in your kitchen. For the dry goods, you'll need some chickpeas, breadcrumbs, avocado oil, soy sauce, tomato paste, salt, cumin, pepper, flour, vegetable broth, Worcestershire, dried thyme, and garlic powder. "I have also used rolled oats in place of breadcrumbs in this recipe and that works fine if you happen to have those on hand," Hahn shares.

From the produce department you'll need red onion, garlic, and cremini mushrooms. And finally, some cold items: egg, butter, and white miso paste. To make this recipe vegan, just use a flax egg, dairy-free butter, and vegan Worcestershire sauce.

Blend The Meatball Ingredients

mixture in food processor
mixture in food processor - Miriam Hahn/Tasting Table

You'll be using the oven soon so preheat it to 400 F now. Then pull out a large food processor and add the chickpeas, breadcrumbs, red onion, garlic, oil, 2 tablespoons of soy sauce, tomato paste, ½ teaspoon of salt, cumin, and pepper to a large food processor.

Pulse the mixture to break down the beans but keep the mixture chunky. "Resist the temptation to turn on the food processor and let it run. When you over blend the mixture, you lose the chunky texture we need for these meatballs," Hahn shares.

Shape The Meatballs

meatballs on baking sheet
meatballs on baking sheet - Miriam Hahn/Tasting Table

Now go ahead and measure out about 2 tablespoons of the chickpea mixture and form it into a ball. You should be able to get 18 meatballs that are 1 ½-inch in diameter. Place the meatballs on a baking sheet with a silicone mat or parchment paper and spray the tops with cooking spray. Pop the tray into the oven and bake for 20 minutes, flipping the meatballs and spraying them with more cooking spray at the halfway point.

Make The Mushroom Gravy

adding flour to mushrooms
adding flour to mushrooms - Miriam Hahn/Tasting Table

While the meatballs are cooking make the gravy. Using a large frying pan brought to medium-high heat, add the butter. Once melted add the onion and cook for 3 minutes. Now add the mushrooms and cook for 5 more minutes. "Stir these frequently so that you get even cooking in the pan," Hahn says.

To add some thickness to the gravy, add the flour to the mushrooms and stir to give them a good coating. Then add the broth, remaining soy sauce, miso paste, Worcestershire, thyme, garlic powder, and the remaining salt. Keep stirring until the gravy thickens and all of the ingredients are incorporated before lowering the heat to simmer and setting the timer for 5 minutes.

Serve The Meatballs Topped With Gravy

meatballs and gravy
meatballs and gravy - Miriam Hahn/Tasting Table

The meal is ready so dish out some meatballs and top them with the mushroom gravy. Garnish with chopped chives if desired. You can eat the meatballs and gravy alone or serve them on top of mashed potatoes. This makes a hearty winter dinner and is a great leftover lunch. The meatballs and gravy will last well for up to 5 days in the fridge if kept in a sealed container.

Vegetarian Meatballs And Mushroom Gravy Recipe

meatballs and gravy in bowl
meatballs and gravy in bowl - Miriam Hahn/Tasting Table

Prep Time: 15mCook Time: 33mYield: 4 ServingsIngredients

  • 1 (15-ounce) can chickpeas, rinsed and drained

  • 1 cup breadcrumbs

  • ½ cup diced red onion, divided

  • 2 garlic cloves, minced

  • 2 tablespoons avocado oil

  • 1 large egg

  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce, divided

  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste

  • 1 ½ teaspoon salt, divided

  • ½ teaspoon cumin

  • ¼ teaspoon pepper

  • 3 tablespoons butter

  • 16 ounces cremini mushrooms, thinly sliced

  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

  • 1 cup vegetable broth

  • 1 tablespoon white miso paste

  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme

  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder

Optional Ingredients

  • chopped chives, for garnish


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 F.

  2. Add the chickpeas, breadcrumbs, ¼ cup red onion, garlic, oil, egg, 2 tablespoons soy sauce, tomato paste, ½ teaspoon salt, cumin, and pepper to a large food processor. Pulse the mixture to break down the beans but keep the mixture chunky.

  3. Form the mixture into 18 balls, about 1 ½-inches in diameter, and place them on a baking sheet. Spray the tops with cooking spray and bake for 20 minutes, turning and re-spraying halfway.

  4. Add the butter to a large frying pan and bring the heat to medium-high. Add the remaining ¼ cup red onion and sauté for 3 minutes. Add the mushrooms and cook for 5 minutes. Add the flour and stir to coat, then add the broth, remaining soy sauce, miso paste, Worcestershire, thyme, garlic powder, and the remaining salt. Simmer for 5 minutes.

  5. Top the meatballs with gravy and serve, optionally garnished with chopped chives.

Read the original article on Tasting Table.