Italian Black Bean Meatless Balls

I wanted some meatless *meat*balls so I came up with this recipe. They work best if you bake them in the oven, but they can be made on the stove if you don’t want to turn the oven on. The oven allows them to hold their shape better….they flatten a bit in a pan. The oven also crispens the entire ball, whereas in the pan, they tend to crispen only where they have touched the pan.

The pumpkin adds moistness to the balls. I freeze my leftover pumpkin in ice cube trays and store the pumpkin cubes in reseable bags in the freezer for future use.  (I don’t like wasting food.) 🙂

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I served the meatballs over Delallo gluten free rice pasta, with my Tomato Free Tomato Sauce to which I added some fresh (well actually frozen in ice cubes) parsley, basil and oregano. Yum!

I hope you enjoy the black bean balls too! (If you look closely, near the back of the photo by the green bowl, you can see the steam rising….)  Yum again!


Italian Black Bean Meatless Balls

These are easy to make if you have a food processor!
Course Legumes, Main Course
Appliances Food Processor, Oven
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 12 balls


  • 1 15 ounce can black beans, drained (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • 1/2 cup cooked short grain brown rice
  • 1/4 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1 slice onion coarsely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves peeled and minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 3/8 teaspoon sea salt optional


  1. Drain and rinse the black beans.
  2. Put a blade in the bottom of the food processor bowl. Add all ingredients to the mixing bowl.
  3. Process on low until mixed. Taste and adjust seasonings.
  4. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  5. Shape the mixture into 12 balls. Place on the baking sheet. Bake for 25-30 minutes.
  6. Or you can cook the balls in a non-stick pan, turning occasionally. I also covered the pan to allow the balls to thoroughly heat.
  7. Serve over the pasta of your choice with the sauce of your choice, and with lots and lots of love!

Recipe Notes

I used Delallo Rice Pasta (it's yummy)! I used my Tomato Free Tomato Sauce with added basil, oregano and parsley.