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These vegan, Lentil Meatballs with Coconut Curry Sauce are truly delicious! Infused with fragrant Indian spices, they are healthy and full of flavor. Vegan and Gluten Free! Video.
These flavorful vegan, Lentil Meatballs are served over a fragrant Indian-spiced Coconut Curry Sauce. The aroma will drench your kitchen in goodness. The lentil meatballs are baked, rather than fried – so they remain relatively low in fat. Served with basmati rice or a salad, this meal is hearty, healthy and delicious. I also just learned… it also won BEST vegan recipe over at Food 52!
Lentil Meatballs | 60-second Video
Lentil Meatball Ingredients
- Black lentils (uncooked) -I adore these little Black Caviar lentils because of their petite size, their dark color and rich earthy flavor. They are meaty little guys, who hold their shape after cooking, and take only 20 -25 minutes to cook. But feel free to use brown lentils or green lentils. Any whole lentils will work great here- just do not use split lentils.
- fennel seeds
- Kosher salt
- granulated garlic
- firm tofu
- olive oil
Indian Coconut Curry Sauce:
- fresh turmeric (or ground turmeric )
- olive oil
- fresh tomato
- Fenugreek leaves – truly elevate! Use fresh or dried. Note: Fenugreek seeds are a different flavor.
- Coconut milk (not lite)
- lime juice
- salt, pepper, seasonings
TIP: Dried fenugreek leaves truly elevate this dish! We use them often here on the blog- so they won’t go to waste!
How to make Lentil Meatballs
Cooked Lentils and cooked quinoa are mixed with cilantro, garlic and spices.
Tofu is whipped in a food processor into a thick paste, and acts as the binder here. Fold this into the lentil-quinoa mixture.
With wet hands, form, into ping-pong-sized balls and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
Bake the lentil meatballs in the oven for 20-22 minutes.
While they are in the oven make the coconut curry sauce. I highly recommend making a double batch of the sauce!
Place lentil meatballs over the sauce and sprinkle with cilantro.
What to serve with Lentil Meatballs?
- Basmati rice
- Naan Bread
- Indian Spinach Salad
- Palak Paneer
- Bombay Carrot Salad
- Authentic Chai!
- Chai Cookies!
Enjoy the Lentil Meatballs- let us know what you think in the comments below.
- 1 cup black caviar lentils (uncooked) Sub green or brown lentils, just not “split” lentils
- 1 tsp fennel seed
- 1/2 cup quinoa ( uncooked)
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 1 tsp granulated garlic
- 1/3 cup chopped cilantro
- 6 oz firm tofu, pressed down ( to release water) and patted dry – this acts as the binder ( do not use silken tofu)
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
Coconut Curry Fenugreek Sauce: ( if you like extra saucy, double the recipe)
- 4 cloves garlic- minced
- 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, grated
- 1 teaspoon fresh turmeric, grated (or 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric )
- 1– 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 extra large tomato, finely diced, with juices
- 1 tablespoon dried fenugreek leaves
- 14 ounce can coconut milk (not lite)
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 1 teaspoon brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt, more to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne, more to taste
- fresh cracked pepper to taste
1. On high heat, bring lentils and fennel seeds to a boil in a small pot with 3 cups water. Cover, turn heat to low and simmer 25 minutes. Drain well.
2. On high heat, bring quinoa to a boil in a small pot with 1 cup of water. Cover, turn heat to low, simmer 15 minutes, turn heat off, leave covered.
3. Make the sauce. In a skillet or saute pan, over medium heat, saute garlic and ginger in olive oil, until just golden, stirring often to prevent scorching. Add turmeric ( root, or ground) sauté 1 more minute. Add diced tomato, and sauté until most of the juices evaporate, about 5-8 minutes. Stir in coconut milk, fenugreek leaves, lime, brown sugar, salt, cayenne and pepper. Taste for salt. Bring to a simmer, then turn off the heat until ready to serve.
4.Make the vegan lentil meatballs. Pre-heat oven to 400F. In a food processor, place the cooked quinoa, and half of the lentils, and pulse until the texture of coarse sand—place in a large bowl. Add the remaining lentils, salt, granulated garlic, and chopped cilantro to the bowl and mix well.
In the same food processor add the tofu (blotted well, broken apart) and olive oil. (The tofu will bind the mixture and oil will keep them from drying out.) Pulse tofu and oil until a smooth paste, scraping down the sides as necessary. Scoop it into the lentil mixture and mix it in well.
Prepare a parchment-lined baking sheet. With your hands, kneed lentil mixture briefly so it’s thoroughly mixed and salt and spices are evenly distributed. With wet hands form small ping pong sized balls. Place on baking sheet and place in the 400 F oven for 20-25 minutes.
5.Warm the sauce and place lentil meatballs in the sauce, and sprinkle with cilantro. Serve immediately.
Double the sauce for extra saucy! Most people are enjoying this doubled. 🙂
- Serving Size: 3 lentil balls
- Calories: 295
- Sugar: 2 g
- Sodium: 244.4 mg
- Fat: 8 g
- Saturated Fat: 2 g
- Carbohydrates: 40.2 g
- Fiber: 6.8 g
- Protein: 18.5 g
- Cholesterol: 0 mg
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