Vegan Meatballs

These vegan meatballs are crispy on the outside and tender on the inside. They pack in lots of classic Italian flavor and take just 10 minutes to bake. Serve as an appetizer, over pasta, and more.

Vegan Meatballs in a Cast Iron Skillet with Tomato Sauce

Simply Recipes / Tara Omidvar

We grew up on meatballs. It’s one of many classic Italian meals we vividly remember making throughout our childhood. It’s no surprise that meatballs are heavily intertwined with our most wholesome memories: cooking with our mom, hosting pasta parties for our high school soccer team, and enjoying the coveted meatballs in our grandma’s “Christmas soup” every year for the holidays.

It’s safe to say that 20 percent of our childhood was spent standing over the kitchen table rolling meatballs into perfect balls. They are near and dear to our hearts. To this day—with all the recipes we make and develop—our dad’s favorite meal is still spaghetti and meatballs.

These vegan meatballs are juicy, tender, cheesy, garlicky, and packed with flavor. The smell of them baking in the oven carries the promise of a comforting Italian meal on its way. There’s truly nothing better. So put on Frank Sinatra and start rolling! You’re guaranteed to have a good time and an enjoyable meal.

What Makes These Meatballs Vegan?

There are 3 main things that make these meatballs vegan. Impossible Foods plant-based meat instead of ground beef, a flaxseed "egg" as a binding agent, and nutritional yeast and vegan Parmesan instead of dairy cheese.

Vegan Meatballs in a Cast Iron Skillet with Tomato Sauce

Simply Recipes / Tara Omidvar

Tips for Making The Best Vegan Meatballs

  • Use your hands to combine all the ingredients. This prevents overmixing and creates a juicy, more tender meatball.
  • When rolling out the meatballs, wet your hands so the mixture doesn’t stick to you. Keep a glass of water nearby to dip your fingers in as needed.
  • Chop your garlic and onion very finely so they are easy to incorporate into the meatball mixture.

Ways To Serve Vegan Meatballs

  • Spaghetti & Meatballs: You know the drill. After baking, drop the meatballs into simmering tomato sauce and serve atop spaghetti.
  • Italian Wedding Soup: Swap these vegan meatballs for the traditional beef and pork meatballs in this recipe, cooking them in the broth as instructed.
  • Cheesy Meatball Appetizer: Place cooked meatballs in a baking dish lined with tomato sauce. Top with mozzarella cheese (vegan if desired) and broil until it melts. Serve with toothpicks for bite-sized apps.
  • Meatball Sub: Meatballs, sauce, and shredded cheese on a garlic and olive oil brushed roll is the ultimate Italian comfort food.
  • Greek Meatballs: Give these meatballs a Mediterranean flavor by substituting fresh dill for the parsley.
Plate of Spaghetti and Vegan Meatballs with Tomato Sauce at a Table Setting with a Table Napkin, Two Small Bowls with Pepper and Coarse Salt, and a Bowl of Parsley

Simply Recipes / Tara Omidvar

Vegan Comfort Food Classics

Vegan Meatballs

Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 11 mins
Total Time 31 mins
Servings 3 to 4 servings
Yield 12 to 16 meatballs

You can substitute Beyond Meat for Impossible. Just note that the package might be a different weight.

If you don’t have vegan Parmesan, you can use extra nutritional yeast in its place.

If you don’t have ground flax seed, soak your breadcrumbs in plant milk to replicate the binding agent. Use 1 tablespoon of unsweetened plant milk for 2 tablespoons of breadcrumbs. The texture of the meatballs will be softer.


  • 1 tablespoon ground flax meal

  • 2 tablespoons water

  • 2 cloves garlic, finely minced or grated

  • 1/4 cup finely diced white onion

  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley, or 2 teaspoons dried parsley

  • 2 tablespoons breadcrumbs, plain or Italian

  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast

  • 1 tablespoon freshly grated vegan Parmesan

  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano

  • 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds, optional

  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon chili flakes

  • 1 (12-ounce) package Impossible Foods ground beef


  1. Make the flax egg:

    Whisk together the ground flax meal and water in a small bowl. Set aside for 10 minutes.

    Bowl of Flax Meal and Water to Make Flax Egg for Vegan Meatballs Recipe

    Simply Recipes / Tara Omidvar

  2. Make the meatball mixture:

    Meanwhile, add the garlic, onion, parsley, breadcrumbs, nutritional yeast, vegan Parmesan, oregano, fennel seeds (if using), onion powder, black pepper, salt, and chili flakes to a medium-sized mixing bowl. Whisk to combine. 

    Add the flax egg and Impossible meat. Use clean hands to mix just until combined.

    Bowl of Seasoning, Herbs, Onions, and Vegan Parmesan Next to a Whisk for Vegan Meatballs Recipe

    Simply Recipes / Tara Omidvar

    Seasoning Mixture Whisked Together for Vegan Meatballs Recipe

    Simply Recipes / Tara Omidvar

    Vegan Meatball Mixture in a Bowl

    Simply Recipes / Tara Omidvar

  3. Form the meatballs:

    Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside a small bowl or glass of water. 

    Using a cookie scoop or rounded tablespoon to measure, gently roll 1-inch balls and place them on the baking sheet. Dip your fingers in the water to make it easier to form your meatballs. You should have 12 to 16 meatballs.

    Meatball Mixture in a Bowl Next to Formed Meatballs on a Parchment Lined Baking Sheet and a Small Bowl of Water for Meatballs Vegan Recipe

    Simply Recipes / Tara Omidvar

    Vegan Meatballs on a Parchment Lined Baking Sheet

    Simply Recipes / Tara Omidvar

  4. Refrigerate and preheat the oven:

    Refrigerate the meatballs for 30 minutes. This helps them keep their shape and provides a juicier, more tender texture.

    Preheat the oven to 425°F.

  5. Bake:

    Bake the meatballs until browned, 10 to 14 minutes. To check for doneness, cut one in half. It should be largely cooked through, although a very small amount of pinkness at the center is okay. Enjoy immediately. 

    Simple Tip!

    If you are serving the meatballs with a sauce, at this point you can drop the meatballs into the sauce and simmer them for a few minutes.

    Store leftover meatballs in the refrigerator for up to 4 days or in the freezer for 2 months. To reheat, drop them into simmering sauce or broth and cook until warmed through.

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    Baked Vegan Meatballs on a Parchment Lined Baking Sheet

    Simply Recipes / Tara Omidvar

    Plateful of Vegan Meatballs with Parsley Leaves, and the Meatball on Top Is Cut in Half

    Simply Recipes / Tara Omidvar

Nutrition Facts (per serving)
273 Calories
16g Fat
7g Carbs
26g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 3 to 4
Amount per serving
Calories 273
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 16g 20%
Saturated Fat 6g 31%
Cholesterol 75mg 25%
Sodium 228mg 10%
Total Carbohydrate 7g 3%
Dietary Fiber 2g 8%
Total Sugars 1g
Protein 26g
Vitamin C 2mg 9%
Calcium 53mg 4%
Iron 3mg 14%
Potassium 340mg 7%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.