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Kidney bean meatballs – vegetarian

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  • Chef: Mandy
  • Type: British
  • Serves: 4
  • Cost: 50p per person

These delicious vegetarian “meat” balls are made with kidney beans, a great source of plant-based protein and fibre.

Kidney beans also contain lots of vitamins and minerals, including iron.

These kidney bean meatballs are delicious served with pasta and tomato sauce.

Serves 4




1 tablespoon olive oil

1 onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1 teaspoon dried herbs

1 teaspoon onion powder, optional

1 tin of kidney beans, drained and rinsed

1 tablespoon tomato purée

1 tablespoon miso paste, marmite or soy sauce, optional

100g breadcrumbs*

4 tablespoons of chickpea flour (gram flour), or one beaten egg.

4 tablespoons cold water



  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (fan)/200°C/gas mark 6. Line a baking tray with baking paper and set aside.
  2. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a frying pan and add the chopped onion. Fry until soft, stirring often.
  3. Add 2 cloves garlic and fry for one more minute.
  4. Next add a teaspoon of dried herbs and a teaspoon of onion powder (if using).
  5. Add your drained kidney beans and stir well to mix. Use a potato masher or a handheld stick blender to break down the kidney beans. They don’t need to be completely puréed – leave a little texture.
  6. Stir in a tablespoon of tomato purée and either a tablespoon of miso paste, marmite or soy sauce (this is optional – it’s just to add extra flavour).
  7. Turn off the heat and stir through 100g breadcrumbs.
  8. Measure out four tablespoons of chickpea flour and mix with four tablespoons of cold water. You could use a beaten egg instead if you prefer.
  9. Add this to the kidney bean mixture and stir well.
  10. Lightly oil your hands (to stop the mixture sticking) and roll the mixture into 20 small balls.
  11. Place them on your prepared baking tray. Bake for 15 minutes, then turn over and bake for a further 10 minutes until turning golden brown.
  12. Serve with pasta and tomato sauce.

*To make your own breadcrumbs tear slightly stale bread into pieces and pulse in a food processor.