Ahhhhh Meatless Monday’s. I really enjoy them! Sometimes it turns into a “Meatless Thursday” – nevertheless, while protein is obviously an incredibly important macronutrient, it is so wonderful on the body’s digestive system to take a break from animal protein sometimes – specifically meats – as these are toughest on the bloodstream and gut to break down. This is not a bad thing. Hear me: I am NOT advocating a meatless LIFE. but it is a great thing to offer the body a chance to break from it on occasion.
Mo and I spent the last 8 days in Maui, Hawaii. It was AMAZING. I will spare you the details so as to not rub it in 🙂 but suffice to say, we lived on fresh fruit smoothies and wild caught fish every day! It was fabulous!
Given that, we came back feeling pretty good… Sometimes travel can really take it out of you – especially when you don’t stick to your typical routine of clean-eating or perhaps drink alcohol more than normal, etc. Plus, travel in and of itself can be tough on the body… Plus, we’ve had a TON going on with LINK Endurance over the past month. So many WONDERFUL things that we are thrilled to share with all of you (are you signed up for our weekly newsletters!?!?) but nonetheless, I feel like we’ve been go-go-go for weeks now, even in Maui.
When we got back to Dallas we both decided it would be a good idea to give our bodies a little break and an easy way to do that would be going meatless at dinner for 5 days.
One of the greatest things I took away from practicing plant-based a few years ago is just because meat is available doesn’t mean I actually need it or want it. It’s just the American way right? We have a protein at every meal. I think it is SO important (and you know this if you follow us!) to LISTEN TO YOUR BODY! Before you order at a restaurant or decide what to cook for dinner – really think about it: do you WANT meat? Are you actually hungry for it? If so, YES! By all means! Have it! But if not, consider going meatless. Our bodies are so wise… If we listen consistently enough and actually adhere to, we will balance ourselves out so naturally. Okay now I’m getting on one of my favorite tangents! Back to the recipe!
These meatballs were absolutely delicious! All the texture and meatiness of the typical meatball but – no meat. And if you want to make them vegan, omit the optional cheese (perhaps use nutritional yeast instead…) and omit the 2 eggs and replace with 2 tbsp ground flax seeds mixed with 6 tbsp filtered water, set aside to “set” for 5 minutes and then mix into the “meatball batter” as you would whole eggs.
Last weeks recipe: Spinach and Egg Stuffed Sweet Potatoes started us off on our 5 days of meatless dinners! Follow along for next weeks recipe! Perhaps you use these for at least one meatless meal each week!? I served ours with a simple salad, but you could also serve with Zucchini Noodles or Cauliflower Rice or perhaps your favorite Pasta or White Rice!
Hope you enjoy these as much as we did!
Meatless Mushroom Meatballs
Makes 16-18 small meatballs, Serves 4-6
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
- approx. 20oz baby portabella mushrooms, finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- ½ cup gluten free instant oats
- ½ cup almond flour
- ½ bunch flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
- 2 cage free eggs*
- ½ tsp dried oregano
- ½ tsp dried thyme
- dash cayenne pepper
- ¼ tsp sea salt
- ¼ tsp black pepper
- 1, 24oz jar marinara sauce*
- parsley to garnish, leaves only
- 1/3 cup grated raw/unpasteurized parmesan, pecorino or manchego cheese
- In a large skillet, sauté the onion in olive oil and a pinch of sea salt on medium-low heat for about 7 minutes, until completely softened.
- Add mushrooms and increase the heat to medium-high. Cook for 10-15 minutes until completely cooked down – you’ll need to wait until the water evaporates and then keep cooking the mushrooms until they brown nicely.
- To the mushrooms, add garlic, stir, and transfer the mushrooms into a large mixing bowl. Set aside to cool for 15 minutes.
- Add the remaining ingredients, excluding marinara, to the mushrooms. Stir the mixture to combine and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours, up to overnight for the flavors (and texture!) to develop.
- When ready to cook, using a tablespoon as a measure, form small balls from the mixture. Fry the balls in a small amount of olive oil until they turn brown or bake them in a preheated oven at 400 degrees F for 15 minutes on a parchment lined baking sheet.
- Add marinara sauce to a medium saucepan. Place the meatballs on top and cook the meatballs in the sauce on low heat for about 15 more minutes after either cooking method.
- Garnish with fresh parsley and/or grated cheese of choice. Serve with Zucchini Noodles, Cauliflower Rice, White Jasmine Rice or your favorite pasta!
- My favorite marinara is The Vine. They are the cleanest and best-tasting I have found! You can purchase in the LINK Endurance Shop or at Central Market.
- If you want to make this entirely plant-based, omit the 2 eggs and replace with 2 tbsp ground flax seeds mixed with 6 tbsp filtered water, set aside to “set” for 5 minutes and then mix into the “meatball batter” as you would whole eggs.
Recipe adapted from Tania at cooktoria.com