This herbed cauliflower quinoa meatball recipe is a protein-packed vegetarian alternative. It combines riced cauliflower and quinoa with garlic and herbs for a savory, tender meatball that’s perfect with pasta or veggie noodles!
Meatballs! Without meat. With cauliflower and quinoa instead! Wait, what? Are they still considered meatballs? I don’t know. And I don’t really care, either. Because they’re GOOD and that’s all that matters.
If these aren’t technically meatballs, then let’s talk about what they ARE:
- Incredibly tasty over veggie noodles such as spiralized zucchini
- Also yummy on top of regular pasta noodles
- Hearty and filling
- Easy to assemble and cook
- FIVE simple ingredients (plus a couple basic seasonings)
- Ideal for meal prep
- Can be made ahead of time and heated up in the sauce of your choosing for 10-minute dinner situations
- Delicious with red sauce, alfredo, white wine sauce, or pesto
See? The possibilities are endless. These vegetarian meatballs are the little engine that could. I’m especially loving them with zucchini noodles and my favorite spicy red pasta sauce (I’m digging DeLallo’s spicy arrabbiata right now, because I caught it on sale obviously). I love that I’m getting a serving of plant-based goodness and I feel SO full afterwards.
Something else that I feel must be mentioned. I have been known to grab a few of these directly out of the fridge and dip them in aforementioned spicy pasta sauce. Is that weird? Maybe. Oh well. 🙆 No shame in my game.
These vegetarian meatballs are another recipe option that keeps those 2018 healthy eating goals on track WITHOUT being boring or leaving us hungry. There’s plenty of protein, plenty of fiber, and plenty of flavor. No meat necessary. 💁 Sauce ’em up. Serve, and enjoy!Print
Herbed Cauliflower Quinoa Meatballs
- Prep Time: 15 mins
- Cook Time: 40 mins
- Total Time: 55 minutes
- Yield: 16 meatballs 1x
- Category: Main Dish
- Method: Oven
- 3 cups riced cauliflower
- 1 cup cooked quinoa
- 1/4 cup gluten free panko
- 2 eggs (or vegan eggs)
- 2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
- 1 Tablespoon thyme
- 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- Preheat oven to 400ºF and line a baking sheet with parchment.
- In a large bowl, combine riced cauliflower and quinoa. In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs. Add whisked eggs into the large bowl, then add panko, garlic, thyme, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper. Mix together until well combined.
- Form the mixture into balls about 2 Tablespoons in size. Arrange on the baking sheet. Place baking sheet into the oven and bake 40 minutes, flipping halfway.
- Serve over zucchini noodles, regular pasta, or veggies and top with your favorite sauce!
*To make this recipe vegan, swap out the eggs for flax eggs or vegan egg substitute of your choice.
* Nutritional facts are based upon one “meatball.” I typically eat 3-5 of them when served with zoodles or pasta, but everyone’s appetite and dietary needs are different. :)
- Serving Size: 1
- Calories: 54
- Sodium: 88 mg
- Carbohydrates: 8 g
- Fiber: 1 g
- Protein: 3 g