Vegan Spaghetti & Cheese Stuffed Meatballs
What's better than Vegan Spaghetti and Meatballs? Stuffing them with Vegan Mozzarella!
This is a pretty simple dish, I mean, the title alone kinda explains it! We're gonna use some plant based meat to make some meatballs and we're gonna stuff 'em with vegan cheese!
You can either make the sauce from scratch or get some premade from the store. But I highly recommend making it from scratch. It's not that hard, and tastes way better and plus you get to squish a bunch of tomatoes with your hands. Make sure you get San Marzanos. I don't know why exactly, but I think a bunch of Italian Grandmothers will come to your house and give you a hard time if you don't. That's what I've heard at least. Plus they taste better!
These are big, meal sized meatballs since we've got cheese in there. Mine were about 2 1/2 inches in diameter and weighed about 3-4 oz each (with the cheese inside). For the cheese, I used Miyoko's, and it really is the best store-bought Mozzarella I've had so far, so if you have access to it, I highly recommend that as well. That being said, if you want smaller meatballs or don't have access to vegan mozzarella, you can make these without the cheese inside and they will still be super delicious. The cheese just takes them to another level!
Makes 5-6 servings
1 package of spaghetti
Chopped basil for garnish
Vegan parmesan for garnish
1 (28 oz) can San Marzano tomatoes
6 garlic cloves (minced)
2 shallots (finely diced)
1 Tbsp tomato paste
1 Tbsp Italian seasoning
1 Tbsp garlic salt
2 Tbsp red wine
Red pepper and Salt to taste
Makes about 10-12 Big Meatballs
24 oz plant based meat
5 oz vegan mozzarella (cut into cubes about 1 inch big)
1 cup breadcrumbs
2 shallots finely diced
1/2 cup vegan parmesan cheese
1 Tbsp chopped basil or Italian parsley
1 Tbsp Italian seasoning
1/2 Tbsp onion powder
1/2 Tbsp garlic powder
1/4 cup Just Egg or 1 flax egg (1 Tbsp ground flax, 3 Tbsp water)
Red pepper flakes to taste
If using a flax egg, prepare by whisking the ground flax and water in a bowl. Refrigerate for at least 15 mins. You can also use any egg replacer you want! I used the Just Egg for convenience.
Once the flax egg has had time to sit, add all ingredients for the meatballs in a bowl and mix until well combined.
In a bowl, using your hands, crush the San Marzano tomatoes until they are a chunky sauce. You can also use a blender if you don't wanna use your hands! But it's fun!
Take about 3 oz of the meatball mixture and roll into a ball. I used an ice cream scooper to make sure they were all the same size.
Using your fingers, make a depression in each meatball. Then add a cube of the cheese inside, and fold the meat around it, then roll into a ball. You should have about 10-12 meatballs.
When all meatballs are rolled, add some oil to a pan over medium heat. Once oil is heated, add the meatballs and brown them on all sides.
After meatballs have browned, remove from the pan and set aside.
In the same pan (add more oil if needed) let's make the Marinara.
First add your shallots and cook until translucent (about 4 minutes). Add garlic, cook for 1 minute, then add seasoning, tomato paste and stir to combine.
Add red wine and reduce slightly.
Then add the crushed tomatoes and stir. Bring to a low simmer.
Add the meatballs back into the pan and cover. Simmer for about 20 minutes.
While the meatballs and sauce simmer, cook your pasta.
Top pasta with sauce and meatballs, garnish with vegan parmesan and basil or parsley.