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Appetizer, Entree, Side, Vegetarian, Fall |280 calories per serving|160 minute recipe

Golden Beet Veggie Balls

This content was last updated on December 18, 2019

Boost the delicious and the health potential of your holiday meals with more plant foods! Try making a plant-based entrée like these veggie “meatballs”, filled with the goodness of beans, grains, vegetables, and herbs. These crispy veggie balls are filled with the earthy, holiday flavors of golden beets, white beans, sage, and hazelnuts. Serve them alongside this easy almond crema dip for the perfect party appetizer, holiday entrée, or comforting side dish.


Veggie Balls
  • 1 bunch fresh golden beets (about 5)
  • 1 (15-oz) can cannellini beans, rinsed drained (about 1 3/4 cups)
  • 2 green onions, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup mushrooms, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup fresh chopped parsley
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped hazelnuts
  • 1/4 cup ground flax seeds
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat breadcrumbs (may use gluten-free)
  • 1 tsp. sage
  • 1 tsp. tarragon
  • 1 tsp. thyme
  • 1/2 tsp. smoked paprika
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper
  • 2 Tbsp. reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 Tbsp. tahini
Almond Sage Crema
  • 1 cup peeled, slivered almonds
  • 1/3 cup plain, unsweetened plant milk
  • 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. ground sage
  • Sea salt (to taste, optional)
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh, chopped sage leaves
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
Makes 8 servings (2 1/2 Tbsp). Per serving: 280 calories, 15 g total fat (1 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 0 mg cholesterol, 28 g carbohydrates, 12 g protein, 7 g dietary fiber, 220 mg sodium, 7 g sugar, 0 g added sugar.


Veggie Balls
  1. Trim beets and scrub outside surface, leaving peels on. Shred beets with food processor or box grater.
  2. Place beans in a mixing bowl and mash slightly with a potato masher to achieve a thick mixture with some lumps.
  3. Add beets, onions, garlic, mushrooms, parsley, hazelnuts, flax seeds, breadcrumbs, sage, tarragon, thyme, smoked paprika, and black pepper. Toss together well.
  4. Mix in soy sauce, tahini, and lemon juice—using hands to combine well.
  5. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour (or overnight).
  6. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F and spray a baking sheet with non-stick cooking spray.
  7. Form 24 golf ball-sized balls out of the mixture and place evenly on baking sheet.
  8. Bake veggie balls in top rack of oven for about 40 minutes, until golden brown.
  9. Serve with Almond Sage Cranberry Crema.
Almond Sage Crema
  1. Soak almonds in water for 2 hours (or overnight).
  2. Drain the water and place soaked almonds in the container of a blender or food processor.
  3. Add plant milk, lemon juice, garlic, black pepper, and ground sage and process to make a thick, creamy dip.
  4. Transfer crema to a dish and stir in fresh sage, cranberries, and salt if desired. May garnish with additional freshly ground black pepper and fresh sage.


You can use any plain unsweetened plant milk for this recipe (i.e. soy, almond)

This recipe is by Sharon Palmer, RDN, The PlantPowered Dietitian. She is a Los Angeles-based, award-winning food and nutrition writer, plant-based food expert, and author of Plant-Powered for Life and The Plant-Powered Blog.

This recipe is reprinted from The New American Plate Cookbook, which features 200 mouth-watering recipes and color photos. It is available from bookstores and online booksellers. Proceeds from sales fund cancer research.

This recipe contains cancer fighting foods:

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