eggplant meatballs

Meatless eggplant meatballs are an amazing way to get more vegetables into your diet. You won't miss the meat.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings 4
Author Marie@FeelingFoodish


For the tomato sauce:

  • 28 oz can of crushed or diced tomato
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 onion , chopped
  • 1 tablespoon garlic , minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil

For the eggplant meatballs (see note):

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound (500 g) eggplant, large dice (about 1 medium-large sized eggplant)
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 onion , chopped
  • 1 tablespoon garlic , minced
  • 1 can white beans (butter, cannelloni, or navy)
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley
  • 1/2 cup fresh breadcrumbs
  • pinch of red pepper flakes

To serve:

  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • Tomato sauce from above


For the sauce:

  1. In a medium sized saute pan, heat the olive oil over medium high heat and add the onion. Saute for a few minutes, until the onion becomes soft (about 3 minutes).
  2. Add the garlic and keep heating for another minute or so
  3. Add the rest of the sauce ingredients and cook, covered, over low heat for 20 minutes
  4. Set aside.
  5. In the meantime, make the eggplant meatballs

For the meatballs:

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees
  2. Use 1 tablespoon of oil to baking pan and place in the oven to preheat
  3. In a large saute pan, heat 1 tablespoon oil, and add eggplant
  4. Cook eggplant over medium high heat for 15 to 20 minutes until tender and then transfer to a food processor
  5. Add 1 more tablespoon of oil to now empty pan and add the onion. Cook for 3 minutes and then add the garlic and keep cooking for about another minute.
  6. In the meantime, rinse and drain the beans and add them to the food processor along with the parsley.
  7. Pulse the ingredients until combined but not pureed.
  8. Add the onion, garlic mixture, the breadcrumbs and the seasonings to the food processor with the eggplant mixture and pulse again.
  9. Form the mixture into 12 equally size balls
  10. Remove preheated pan from oven and arrange the meatballs on the tray
  11. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes until firm and well browned.

To serve

  1. Serve with tomato sauce, or place in baking dish, top with cheeses and sauce and broil on low unti the cheese is melted (about 3 minutes)

Recipe Notes

You can make the mixture one night and then roll and cook them another night if you are short on time