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Vegan Lentil Meatballs and fresh tomato sauce

Easy Lentil Meatballs with Fresh Tomato Sauce

This easy lentil meatballs recipe with fresh tomato sauce is perfect for a quick summer lunch in the garden or serve it with spaghetti for an easy family supper.
Course Main Course
Cuisine Dairy Free, vegan
Keyword Lentil Recipes, Vegan Meatballs
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Chill Time 1 hour
Servings 16
Calories 62kcal


For the Lentil Meatballs

  • 100 g red lentils rinsed
  • 375 ml water
  • 1 generous tsp Marmite
  • 1 small onion peeled and diced
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp chilli flakes (optional)
  • 50 g breadcrumbs
  • a little olive oil for brushing

For the Fresh Tomato and Hidden Veg Sauce

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 small onion peeled and diced
  • 1 stick celery diced
  • 1 carrot diced
  • 2 cloves garlic peeled and crushed
  • 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 400 g can of chopped tomatoes
  • 1/2 can of water
  • 1 tsp salt
  • freshly ground black pepper to taste


To Make Vegan Lentil Meatballs

  • Place lentils and water in a pan and bring to the boil.
  • Stir in the Marmite, reduce heat and simmer for 15 - 20 minutes until lentils are cooked to a lumpy puree and water has been absorbed. Stir regularly. Add a little more water if needed during cooking. Remove from heat.
  • Transfer cooked lentils to a bowl and add remaining ingredients apart from the olive oil. Stir until well combined. Add more breadcrumbs if needed. Chill for 30 minutes to an hour.
  • Preheat oven to 180C/350F, line a baking tray with baking parchment.
  • Take a spoonful of lentil mixture and roll in your hands to make a walnut sized ball (slightly wet hands help here), place on your prepared baking tray. Repeat with the rest of the mixture.
    Meatfree Meatballs rolled and ready to bake
  • Brush with a little olive oil (omit if you want to make these oil free) and bake in the preheated oven for 10-15 minutes or until browned. Serve with fresh tomato sauce.
    A tray of Baked Meatless Meat Balls

To Make Fresh Tomato Sauce

  • Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over a gentle heat.
  • Gently fry the onion, celery and carrots for 10 minutes until soft.
  • Add the garlic and fry for a further minute.
  • Add the oregano and paprika and stir to combine.
  • Add the chopped tomatoes, rinse the tin with half a cup of water and add the resulting tomatoey water to the pan.
  • Simmer with a lid on for about an hour, stirring occasionally, until reduced by about a third and the sauce is thick.
  • Add salt and pepper to taste.


Nutritional information is only an approximate guideline. Calculations will vary according to the ingredients you use and your cooking methods.


Calories: 62kcal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 2g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 211mg | Potassium: 173mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 813IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 26mg | Iron: 1mg