Veggie “meatballs” are one of the healthiest food trends today. They are savory little balls of beans, veggies and whole grains baked into golden perfection and served with a flavorful sauce. Plant-based dishes like this can be the star of your plate, taking the place of less healthful protein choices. In fact, eating a more plant-based diet is linked with a multitude of health benefits, including lower risk of cancer.
Sage White Bean Veggie Balls:
- 1 small sweet potato, chopped in chunks
- 1 small red onion, chopped in chunks
- 2 stalks celery
- 8 ounces brown mushrooms
- 1/2 cup hazelnuts
- 2 garlic cloves
- 2 sprigs fresh sage
- 1/2 tsp. ground mustard
- 1/2 tsp. celery salt
- 1/2 tsp. black pepper
- 1 Tbsp. soy sauce
- 1 tsp. pure maple syrup
- 1 lemon, juiced
- 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
- 1/2 cup oats
- 2 Tbsp. ground flax seeds
- Salt, to taste
- 2 15.5-oz cans white (cannellini) beans, rinsed and drained
- non-stick cooking spray
Pomegranate Mandarin Sauce:
- 1 cup pomegranate juice
- 1 large mandarin orange, juice and zest
- 1 1/2 tsp. pure maple syrup
- 1/2 tsp. cardamom
- 1 1/2 Tbsp. cornstarch
- 1 large pomegranate, seeded
- Using a food processor, finely shred or chop the sweet potato, onion, celery, mushrooms, hazelnuts, garlic and sage quickly, just until vegetables are chopped but not liquefied.
- Mix in mustard, celery salt, black pepper, soy sauce, maple syrup, lemon juice, breadcrumbs, oats, and flax seeds. Season with salt as desired (optional). Transfer to bowl.
- Mash the drained beans with a potato masher until smooth, with chunks remaining. Add to vegetable mixture, combining well.
- Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.
- Preheat oven to 375 F.
- Shape mixture into about 40 golf ball-sized balls
- Place veggie balls on baking sheet sprayed with nonstick cooking spray.
- Bake at 375 F for 55-60 minutes, until golden brown and cooked through.
- To make pomegranate mandarin sauce, whisk together pomegranate juice, mandarin orange juice, maple syrup, cardamom and cornstarch in a small saucepan. Heat over medium heat until bubbly and thickened. Stir in orange zest and pomegranate seeds and chill.
- Serve veggie balls with sauce.
When using a food processor the shredding attachment works best to shred or chop vegetables.
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 contains cancer fighting foods:
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