Black Bean Vegan Meatballs

Black Bean Vegan Meatballs

Crunchy and savoury, these black bean vegan meatballs are to die for. This recipe is so simple to make and delivers maximum flavour. Not to be missed!

Black Bean Vegan Meatballs

As a child I loved spaghetti meatballs. Slurping spaghetti lathered in tomato sauce was my favourite pastime. Since turning vegan I’ve searched high & low for an adequate replacement for meatballs. I think I’ve found it in this recipe for black bean vegan meatballs.

These plant based balls are truly the perfect meatball. Unlike other replacement meatballs they don’t crumble and gain a wonderful crispy exterior when cooked. They have the perfect crunch to soft ratio. The best thing of all, this recipe is so simple. It just involves you bunging all the ingredients into a food processor. That’s my kind of dinner prep!

Of course meatballs wouldn’t be without a rich tomato sauce. My recipe for simple marinara sauce is the perfect accompaniment. Now you can make the perfect spaghetti meatballs or meatball sub at home. Glorious.


Serves 4 People (2-3 meatballs each)
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes

This meal is around 97% less polluting than the average UK meal.

  • Eating this recipe will save around 2.83 KG CO2e per person.
  • That’s equivalent to the emissions produced driving 23.43 KM in a modern car.
How do I calculate this?


  • 1 (400g) Can Black Beans (drained and rinsed)
  • 2 Small Onions (peeled and diced)
  • 2 Cloves Garlic (peeled and finely diced)
  • 50 g Nutritional Yeast
  • 50 g Oats
  • 50 g Chickpea Flour (you can substitute this with plain flour, but the texture won't be as good)
  • 2 Tablespoons Tomato Paste
  • 1/2 Teaspoons Fennel Seeds
  • 10 g Fresh Parsley
  • 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil


  • Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a frying pan over a medium heat. Toss in the fennel seeds and fry for about a minute or until the fennel starts to give off a more potent smell.
  • Tip the fried fennel seeds and remaining olive oil into a small food processor. Tip in all the rest of the ingredients and blitz into a chunky mixture. You want most of the ingredients to break down but don't worry if there's an odd half a black bean or two in the finished product!
  • Lightly flour a work surface and dust your hands with the flour. Then scoop about an ice-cream scoops worth of the black bean mixture into your hands and roll into a ball. Place onto the floured surface. Continue this process until you have about 10 – 12 evenly shaped balls.
  • Heat a large frying pan over a medium high heat. Coat the bottom of the pan in a thin layer of olive oil. This is normally about 4 – 5 tablespoons worth but it might vary depending on the width of your pan.
  • Arrange your meatballs into the hot oil and fry for 5 minutes. Once cooked flip over and fry for a further five minutes. Gently press the meatballs down with the back of your spatula or cooking utensil when flipped to give the balls a little bit more surface area.
  • After 10 minutes total cooking your meatballs should have a nicely golden brown and crispy exterior. If they're still looking a bit pale don't be afraid to cook them a little more, flipping and rotating as you see fit. Don't worry these balls are practically impossible to overcook.
  • Once finished serve the meatballs immediately. They go great nestled in a rich tomato sauce served with fresh pasta. Delicious!
5 from 1 vote

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