Vegan Albondigas (Mexican 'Meatless' Meatballs)

Like many other people here at Bite Me HQ we're trying to eat more plant-based meals but I am incredibly fussy so I have found many meat replacements unsatisfying in terms of taste, texture or both. I have however finally found a plant-based mince that makes great 'meatballs' so we've adapted our Albondigas recipe for a vegan meal that the whole family can enjoy.

Vegan Albondigas

I have used 'The Meatless Farm' vegan mince but you may find others work as well. You just need to look for one that holds together well rather than a free-flowing variety. There are a few steps but they are simple and can be done ahead of time.

Anyway onto the recipe. You will need;

  • 400g or 1 pack of plant-based mince (we used The Meatless Farm) as it's widely available.
  • 2 medium onions, finely chopped
  • vegetable oil for frying
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped or grated
  • 1/4 pint vegetable stock
  • 1 tsp yeast extract (GF if appropriate)
  • 1/4 pint red wine
  • 400g tin chopped tomatoes
  • 200ml passata
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • Serve with rice and optional chopped coriander to garnish.

Method.

To make the 'meatballs'.

  • Fry off the chopped onion. Put half aside and leave the remainder to cool in a large bowl.
  • Once cooled add Spice Mix 1 and the mince. Mix well and make into small ping pong ball sized meatballs. If using the mince mentioned it should come together easily with no need for egg replacer or flour. Place on a plate, cover with film or foil and put in the fridge for 20 mins.
  • Add a little oil to a frying pan. Place 5-6 balls in at a time and brown in the oil. Once browned. set aside until all are fried off.
  • Clean out the pan. Add a little fresh oil, the remaining onions and the garlic and fry gently to cook the garlic through. Add Spice Mix 2, the wine, stock, tomatoes and passata and yeast extract, cover and simmer for 20 minutes. Check seasoning and add if needed. 
  • Using a stick blender, blitz the sauce until smooth. Carefully drop in the 'meatballs' and heat through on a gentle simmer for 20 minutes. 
  • Serve with rice or crusty bread. Sprinkle over fresh coriander to serve if you like. Enjoy.

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