Vegan Spaghetti and Beetballs!  A beautiful twist on the comforting familiar classic.  Beets, black beans, walnuts, and basil make these plant-based meatballs scrumptious and so satisfying.  

Looking for more? Check out our 20+ Easy, Delicious Beet Recipes.

Vegan Spaghetti and Beetballs!  A beautiful twist on the comforting familiar classic.  Beets, black beans, walnuts and basil make these plant-based meatballs scrumptious and so satisfying.  Top with an easy rustic tomato sauce for a meal the whole family will love! #vegan #veganmeatballs #beetballs #spaghetti #veganspaghetti

May you take time to celebrate the quiet miracles that seek no attention.

John O’Donohue

We are getting serious with comfort food here folks!  Sitting down to dinner with a plate of this before you will have you celebrating the little pleasures of life.  And the fact that it is vegan and gluten-free takes it to a whole new level of goodness.

The best thing about these Vegan Beetballs is that they are completely bursting with flavor.  Black beans give depth, toasted walnuts give richness and texture, and fresh basil enlivens everything.  Additionally, these Beetballs are jam-packed with nutrients, plant protein, and they are gluten-free!  Deliciousness + healthy = a perfect meal!

Rustic tomato sauce consists of classic ingredients providing just the right balance- little tang, a bit of spice, and lots of savory flavor creating a perfect complement to the beet-balls.  With minimal effort, the sauce comes together quickly with a few pantry staples.

Vegan meatballs are baked in the oven while you prepare the tomato sauce.  Serve over pasta or in a roll (they make a delicious meatball sandwich), or for a lighter version try them with zucchini noodles.  Both the sauce and beetballs can be prepared ahead of time.  

Spaghetti and Beetballs | 60-second Video

ingredients in beetballs

We are honoring the beautiful beet in this vegan Spaghetti and Meatballs recipe.  

Why Beets?

  • Beets work so well here giving succulent earthy flavor and gorgeous color!  
  • Beets are high in phytonutrients making them rich in antioxidants that help to fight inflammation and repair cell damage.  
  • Beets are shown to improve cognitive health and brain function.  Um…. yes please!!!
making the beet balls

While walnuts are toasting and cooling, chop onions, garlic, beets and carrots.

saute the onion for beet balls

Lightly caramelizing onions with add tons of flavor.

pulse the ingredients in a food processor

Pulse walnuts and basil together.  Set aside once the texture is like coarse sand.

pulse the ingredients

Next pulse everything but the beans.  Pulsing ingredients in separate sessions helps to achieve a meatier texture to the finished beet-ball.  

psyllium powder

We use psyllium fiber for a binder.  It has a very neutral flavor and it also adds nutrition.  Yay!

vegan Worcestershire sauce

We like this vegan Worcestershire for a great flavor booster.  

beet balls

Here is the texture we are going for.  Pulse a few times, stopping to check consistency and to scrap down the sides if needed.  Add beans and pulse a few more times.  It is ok if beans are not completely broken down.

making the beet balls

Add nuts back in.  Pulse 2-3 times until just mixed.

 make this ahead

At this point, you can refrigerate the mixture for up to a day.

beet balls

Scoop balls onto a parchment-lined tray.  A cookie scooper is helpful here.  The mixture is quite moist.

baked beet balls

Baking for 40 minutes at 335 allows time for the beet-balls to firm up and cook through.  Let them cool on the tray as they will firm up more.

beet balls
tomato sauce ingredients

With the Beetballs in the oven, start on the sauce.

It begins with olive oil, garlic and red pepper flakes (optional of course!)

Whole tomatoes are preferred here as they break down beautifully, give vibrant flavor and perfect texture for the sauce.

tomato sauce

Simmer the sauce for about 20 minutes and it’s ready!

Make the optional “Cheezy Sprinkles”.

walnut hempseed crumb topping

Toast up ground walnuts, hemp seeds, and nutritional yeast for a quick vegan cheesy topping for your spaghetti and vegan meatballs!  

Toss the sauce with cooked spaghetti, zucchini noodles or even spaghetti quash. Top with the Beetballs and “Cheezy” Sprinkles. 

Vegan Spaghetti and Beetballs!  A beautiful twist on the comforting familiar classic.  Beets, black beans, walnuts and basil make these plant-based meatballs scrumptious and so satisfying.  Top with an easy rustic tomato sauce for a meal the whole family will love! #vegan #veganmeatballs #beetballs #spaghetti #veganspaghetti

A healthy delicious plant-powered meal. 

Enjoy!

~Tonia

More beet recipes you may like: 

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Vegan Spaghetti and Beetballs!  A beautiful twist on the comforting familiar classic.  Beets, black beans, walnuts and basil make these plant-based meatballs scrumptious and so satisfying.  Top with an easy rustic tomato sauce for a meal the whole family will love! #vegan #veganmeatballs #beetballs #spaghetti #veganspaghetti

Vegan Spaghetti and Beetballs

  • Author: Tonia Schemmel | Feasting at Home
  • Prep Time: 30
  • Cook Time: 40
  • Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
  • Yield: 6 1x
  • Category: vegan, pasta recipes,
  • Method: Oven and Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Italian
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

A comforting plant-based version of a classic!  Flavorful and tender vegan gluten-free beet balls pair perfectly with pasta.  Topped with easy delicious rustic tomato basil sauce.   Serves 6.


Ingredients

Units Scale

Beetballs (makes 24)

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 medium beet, chopped in roughly 1/2 inch chunks (5oz or roughly 1 cup full)
  • 1 medium carrot, chopped in roughly 1/2 inch chunks ( 2 1/2 oz or roughly 1/2 cup)
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon vegan Worcestershire
  • 1/8 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 teaspoon ground psyllium (see notes)
  • 1 cup or 3 oz walnuts, toasted
  • 1 cup or 1 oz fresh basil leaves
  • 15 oz can of black beans, drained

Tomato Sauce (makes 3 1/2 cups) 

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, 2 tablespoons minced
  • 1/81/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes, optional (see notes)
  • 28 oz can whole tomatoes and juices
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • a small handful of fresh basil leaves torn

Vegan Cheesy Sprinkle 

16 ounces dry spaghetti, or linguini


Instructions

Make the Beetballs

  1. Heat oven to 335 degrees.
  2. Toast raw walnuts for 10 minutes.  Set aside to cool.
  3. In a pan over medium heat, saute’ onion and garlic for about 10 minutes, until soft and lightly caramelized.  Let cool a few minutes.
  4. In food processor, add cooled walnuts and basil leaves.  Gently pulse, until the texture resembles coarse sand.  Remove walnut mix from the processor and set aside.
  5. In the same food processor add the cooled caramelized onion/garlic mixture, raw beet chunks, raw carrot chunks, oregano, salt, pepper, tomato paste, Worcestershire, nutritional yeast and psyllium, pulse until mixture is just finely chopped- allowing for a bit of texture.  
  6.  Add black beans to the beet mix.  Pulse 3-4 times.  
  7. Then add the walnuts.  Pulse a time or two.  Just enough to incorporate everything.  The mixture will be quite moist.  Refrigerating for 30 minutes can help firm them up but is not necessary.  
  8. Scoop onto a baking tray.  Bake 40 minutes at 335.  Remove from oven and allow to cool on the pan.  
  9. Set pasta to boil, cook according to package directions. 

Make the Tomato Sauce

  1. Add olive oil to a saucepan over medium heat.  Throw in minced garlic and red pepper flakes, stirring until lightly toasted, about 3-5 minutes.
  2. Add tomatoes, smashing in with a fork to break them up.  Add oregano and salt.
  3. Keep at a low simmer for 20 minutes, stirring and mashing the tomatoes every 4 minutes or so.  The sauce will thicken as it cooks.
  4. Add fresh basil leaves a few minutes before removing from heat.  

Make the “Cheesy” Sprinkle

  1. In food processor pulse together walnuts, hemp seeds, nutritional yeast and salt.
  2.  Toast in a skillet over medium-low heat.  
  3. Stir constantly for about 5 minutes or until you start to smell the toasty aroma. This sprinkle will keep for a few weeks.  It freezes well.  

Toss the cooked pasta with the sauce, top with a few beetballs and sprinkle with “cheesy sprinkle”. 


Notes

Salt for the beet balls will depend on the salt content of the black beans.  Adjust accordingly.

Psyllium husk works as a binder and is very mild in flavor.  Ground flax seeds can be substituted.  The beet balls will work without this addition.  They will just be softer in texture.  

The sauce has a bit of a kick!  Adjust red pepper flakes in the sauce to your taste and spice tolerance.

The beet ball mixture can be made ahead of time but are best baked just before serving.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 4 Beet Balls, 1/2 cup sauce
  • Calories: 668
  • Sugar: 7.3 g
  • Sodium: 1019.8 mg
  • Fat: 29.2 g
  • Saturated Fat: 3.5 g
  • Carbohydrates: 82.4 g
  • Fiber: 12 g
  • Protein: 22.8 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg

Keywords: vegan meatballs, beet balls, beetballs, spaghetti and beetballs, vegan spaghetti, vegan pasta recipes,

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Comments

  1. Outstanding!!! The sauce is incredible. The beet balls were really fun to make! I didn’t feel the need to refrigerate the mixture, it was easy to shape. I broke them down while on my plate and with the sauce it tastes like a bolognese. I was literally licking the plate – so good!!!

  2. Hello Sylvia and Tania, Finally, I made the Beetballs. A new acquaintance who is vegan presented me with the opportunity.
    Short story:
    I doubled the recipe but did not double the black beans. I made a few of the meatballs and cooked them a day before to test them. My changes for company were this:
    I lightly greased the baking foil, I placed the Beetballs which were prepared the day before and covered them with foil & baked them at 350 for 40 minutes. DELICIOUS
    Thanks Chefs!

  3. I was skeptical at first, but the flavor of these is absolutely delicious! Better than any store bought veggie meatballs. I wish the texture was a bit more firm, but as long as you’re gentle with them, they keep their shape. I will attempt to make a patty with the leftovers.

        1. I would suggest 1 egg and 1/2- 1 cup of bread crumbs, enough so that you can shape them into balls. We haven’t tried this, so you may have to play around to get the right consistency.

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