These cheesy vegetarian meatball sandwiches are so full of flavour and make the perfect weeknight meal. Serve topped with a drizzle of truffle oil for a little extra indulgence!
This might just be the best thing I’ve cooked in a good while.
I know, it’s an extreme statement but we were honestly amazed at how good these vegetarian meatball sandwiches turned out.
Now first off I have to confess that this recipe was totally inspired by my baked meatball sandwiches from a while back.
They were also one of my most favourite recipes (turns out you cant’t really beat meatballs, tomato sauce and cheese, who knew?!) and since we’ve gone veggie during the week I’ve been dying to try out a recipe for vegetarian meatballs.
I was torn over what to use as my main ingredient though. I considered using a similar recipe to the veggie burger I posted a little while ago and go for a mixture of quinoa and beans but I really wanted something with a bit more of a meaty texture.
I considered mushrooms but then it hit me. Aubergine/eggplant was the perfect thing to use. It’s got the right texture and these vegetarian meatball sandwiches honestly turned out better than I was even expecting and they’re probably up there as one of my favourite aubergine recipes.
These vegetarian meatballs are actually so easy to make. You start off by quickly frying the aubergine with onion and garlic and then blending in a food processor.
Mix with breadcrumbs, parmesan, herbs and an egg and roll into balls. Once they’ve baked for 20 minutes they’re ready to be smothered in tomato sauce and cheese 😍
INGREDIENTS YOU NEED TO MAKE THESE VEGETARIAN MEATBALL SANDWICHES:
- Vegetable Oil
- Breadcrumbs – I used panko because that’s what we always have on hand, this is the brand we normally use.
- Fresh Parsley
- Fresh Basil
- Dried Oregano
- Chopped Tomatoes
- Worcestershire Sauce – We use Lea & Perrins but switch out for your favourite vegetarian version.
- Tomato Puree
- Brioche Buns – Or your other favourite bread tolls.
- Truffle Oil – Totally optional but this is the brand I have at the moment.
Keep scrolling to get the full recipe for these vegetarian meatball sandwiches…
Equipment you need to make these vegetarian meatballs…
[amazon_link asins=’B000TARBC6,B015R6V7JO,B073X69YJP,B077SRHSSJ,B003ASATPA’ template=’ProductCarousel’ store=’thecoorep-21′ marketplace=’UK’ link_id=’d65f279a-a7f0-11e8-96ca-ab304fce2206′]
While the meatballs are baking you can make a super simple tomato sauce. Now you could totally use a ready made tomato sauce, go ahead I won’t judge.
But I promise this tomato sauce is so easy and doesn’t take any longer than the meatballs do to cook. Once they’re finished baking and the sauce is cooked you just need to put it all together.
Pop the aubergine meatballs into a baking dish, pour over the tomato sauce and top with torn mozzarella. Bake for another 10 minutes, just until the cheese is melted and browned.
Just serve up big spoonfuls in brioche buns and top with a drizzle of truffle oil if you’re feeling fancy.
HOW TO MAKE VEGETARIAN MEATBALLS WITH EGGPLANT/AUBERGINE (STEP BY STEP):
- Heat the oven. Fry the aubergine in a little oil then add the onion and garlic and cook for a little longer.
- Put the mixture into a food processor and pulse until mostly blended then tip out into a bowl and mix with breadcrumbs, parmesan, herbs and an egg and form into meatballs.
- Bake for 20 minutes and serve.
WHAT TO SERVE WITH VEGETARIAN MEATBALLS:
These vegetarian meatballs are so perfect served in tomato sauce and topped with mozzarella but there are so many other ways you could serve these! They’d be great with a simple side of potatoes and vegetables, with pasta or just as a snack on their own.
HOW MANY CALORIES IN VEGETARIAN MEATBALLS:
A portion of vegetarian meatballs (about five meatballs) is approximately 200 calories but this will depend on the exact ingredients you use.
Want more? Get all my other vegetarian recipes before you go.
WONDERING WHAT TO DO WITH THE LEFTOVER INGREDIENTS YOU’VE GOT FROM MAKING THESE VEGETARIAN MEATBALL SANDWICHES WITH TOMATO & MOZZARELLA?
If you’re anything like me then you’re always looking for ways to save money and avoid food waste so I want to make sure you’ve get plenty of ideas on how to use up any ingredients that are leftover from my recipes!
Use up the rest of your parmesan in this super simple one pot pearl barley dish.
Finish off your mozzarella by using it to top this amazing one pot veggie lasagne!
Vegetarian Meatball Sandwiches with Tomato & Mozzarella
For the Vegetarian Meatballs
- 1 tbsp Vegetable Oil
- 1 Aubergine chopped
- 1 Onion chopped
- 1 tsp Garlic crushed
- 100 g Breadcrumbs
- 20 g Parmesan Cheese grated
- 2 tbsp Fresh Parsley chopped
- 2 tbsp Fresh Basil chopped
- 1/2 tsp Dried Oregano
- Salt and Pepper
- 1 Egg
For the Tomato Sauce
- Olive Oil
- 1 Onion chopped
- 1 tsp Garlic crushed
- 1 400g tin Chopped Tomatoes
- 1 tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
- 1 tbsp Tomato Puree
- Salt and Pepper
- 150 g Mozzarella
- Brioche Buns to serve
- Truffle Oil to serve
- Heat the oven to 200°C. Heat the oil over a medium heat and add the aubergine. Cook for 5 minutes then add the onion and garlic and cook for another 5-10 minutes until everything is softened.
- Place the mixture in a food processor and pulse until mostly blended then tip out into a large bowl. Add the breadcrumbs, parmesan, basil, parsley, oregano and a sprinkle of salt and pepper then mix together until everything is combined. Add the egg and mix together again. Shape into small balls, I got about 20 out of the mixture and place on a greaseproof paper lined baking sheet. Place in the oven and cook for 20 minutes.
- While the meatballs are cooking make the tomato sauce. Heat a drizzle of olive oil in a saucepan and add the onions. Cook for a couple of minutes then add the garlic and cook for another few minutes. Pour in the chopped tomatoes, Worcestershire sauce and oregano and cook on a medium heat for 10 minutes. Stir in the tomato puree and season to taste then remove from the heat.
- Once the meatballs are finished cooking place them in a heatproof dish and top with the sauce. Tear the mozzarella over the top and place in the oven for 10 minutes then serve in brioche buns with a drizzle of truffle oil if desired.
Did you make this recipe?Make sure you follow The Cook Report on Instagram and tag #TheCookReport so we can see what you've made!
Equipment you need to make this recipe…
[amazon_link asins=’B000TARBC6,B077SRHSSJ,B003ASATPA,B015R6V7JO,B00C8921J4′ template=’ProductCarousel’ store=’thecoorep-21′ marketplace=’UK’ link_id=’d4bd45de-a7f5-11e8-bff1-fd6ad193d39d’]