Spaghetti and “Beanballs”

Aha! A vegetarian meatball that holds itself together, this is good news!
Spaghetti and “Beanballs” makes for a great weeknight meal that can be made ahead and reheated to serve. I’m looking forward to noshing on this protein and fiber-rich dish after my run tonight.

An added benefit to these balls is that you can play with them—okay that was awful humor but really, change the type of beans, herbs and seasonings  to create new dishes! Think, black beans with a Latin flair e.g. green onion, cilantro, jalapeno, and mango or Mediterranean style with chopped kalamata olives, parsley, lemon juice and sumac—possibilities!

Raw "Beanballs", Cooked "Beanballs" and Spaghetti + "Beanballs"
Raw “Beanballs”, Cooked “Beanballs” and Spaghetti + “Beanballs”

Spaghetti and Beanballs
Serves 4

Ingredients:

2 cans of White Beans, drained
1 1/2-2 Roasted Red Peppers, diced
1 Yellow Onion, grated
2 cloves Garlic, minced
1/2 c. chopped Parsley
1 c. Panko Bread Crumbs (if you find the bean mixture to be too wet, add more breadcrumbs)
1  Egg
1 Tbsp. Oregano
Salt and Pepper to taste
Your favorite Marinara Sauce-25oz Jar
Parmesan Cheese for grating
Spaghetti Noodles

Preparation:

Preheat oven to 350°F and grease a baking sheet.  If you have a food processor feel free to pulse the beans and roasted red peppers until finely chopped, otherwise in a flat-bottomed pan or skillet mash together the beans and roasted red peppers with a potato masher until you reach a chopped consistency.

Transfer this mixture to a medium-sized bowl and add the garlic, onion, bread crumbs, oregano, salt, pepper and egg.  Stir until combined.  Begin by taking about 2 Tablespoons of bean mixture and roll between your palms until a ‘ball’ shape is attained.  Line the beanballs on the prepared baking sheet, spaced evenly. Bake about 20 minutes or until the beanballs are golden in color and firm to the touch.

In a large pot over medium-high heat, bring water to a boil to cook spaghetti noodles.

In a large skillet heat your fave marinara sauce over medium heat.  Add the beanballs to the skillet with the marinara and simmer until heated through 10-15 minutes.

When the noodles are al dente and ready to serve, dish out the spaghetti onto plates and top with the marinara and beanballs, then grate parmesan cheese atop and serve.

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