After IKEA announced its new vegan meatballs, I began craving meatballs. Obsessively craving is a more accurate description.
Well played IKEA.
Because of this craving and the fact that the nearest IKEA is more than an hour from home, I rummaged through my pantry and freezer to see if I could satisfy the obsession. What I ended up with was the most delicious veggie burger in existence.
Makes sense in my head.
To clarify, I did make some of the mixture into meatballs using a small scoop and baking them until firm. They were a nice addition to top of some gluten-free spaghetti. But I just couldn’t leave well enough alone and thought, what if?
That question usually leads me down a long and winding road, sometimes leading to success and sometimes leading to a new lesson learned. This time it led me to an easy and delicious veggie burger. If all roads were this easy to travel, my life would be less interesting.
Let me give you a little nutrient breakdown so you can fully appreciate this humble little burger. With this knowledge, you can feel good about what you are using as fuel for the amazingly complicated machine that is your body.
The chickpeas and green peas pack a protein punch while providing iron, calcium, and vitamins A and C.
Kale is one of the most nutrient-dense foods on the planet, so sneak it in whenever possible. It is high in vitamins A, B6, C and K and minerals such as manganese, calcium, copper, potassium, and magnesium. Fiber and protein are some more benefits of kale, so eat up Buttercup!
Sorry I called you Buttercup.
Ground psyllium husks act as a binder to keep the form of the patty while providing fiber. Fiber helps control blood sugar, promotes cardiovascular health and helps provide a feeling of fullness, thereby aiding weight loss. It also helps to keep your skin healthy, did ya know? It helps move yeast and fungus from the body so they don’t have a chance to be excreted through the skin, triggering acne or rashes. Fiber also helps keep things moving along ifyouknowwhatImean.
Flax meal also acts as a binder while providing a healthy dose of Omega-3 fatty acids and lignans. It also is a good source of fiber. Again with the fiber!
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Gluten Free & Vegan Veggie Burger or Meatball Recipe
Makes 4-6 patties (depending on size desired) or a 4 servings of meatballs
1 15 oz. can of chickpeas (250g drained weight)
1 c. green peas – thawed (100g)
1/2 corn kernels – thawed (50g)
1 packed cup of kale (30g)
1/2 c. diced bell pepper (50g)
1 c. diced mushrooms (50g)
1 Tbsp. flax meal
1 1/2 Tbsp. Bragg Liquid Aminos
2 tsp. ground psyllium husk
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
scant 1/8 tsp. black pepper
scant 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
In a food processor, combine the chickpeas, green peas, corn, and kale. Pulse several times to combine. Toss in some mushrooms and bell pepper and remaining ingredients and process until smooth. Stop the processor and scrape the sides down to ensure all the ingredients are combined.
Form the patties:
With your hands, scoop about 1/3 cup of the mixture and form into a ball. Place on a parchment-lined baking sheet and press the mixture with a rubber spatula, forming it into a circle. Smooth the top.
If you have a burger press, feel free to use the ring to keep the circle uniform in shape. I threw caution to the wind a free-formed ours into a circle-ish shape.
For meatballs, use a small scoop to place on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
When all the patties or meatballs are formed, bake in a 350 degree oven for 15 minutes.
Flip the patties and bake for an additional 15-20 minutes until firm enough to lift from the baking sheet without splitting in the middle. There is no need to turn the meatballs. Just let them bake the additional time.
If your heart desires, you may also pan-fry these. The middle won’t dry out as much so it will be less firm, but it will still be delicious!
Let cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes.
Now it’s time for burgers, or spaghetti, or salad!
I’m confusing your palate, I know. I apologize. It’s just that this recipe is so versatile! So many options, so little time!
- When making burgers, we dress them simply with hummus, sliced avocado and spinach or kale. Cheese it up for a vegetarian option.
- Top a bowl of pasta with these “meatballs” and your favorite sauce.
- Chop up a patty to top off a spinach salad for a filling and nutrient-dense lunch or dinner.
Be kind to your body and show your belly some love!
Tell me, how would you dress your burger? If you make this into meatless meatballs, what is your favorite sauce?