Veggie balls with ‘courgetti’ & tomato Recipe
Photo by Jen Rich
Serves 6

Veggie balls with ‘Courgetti’ & Tomato


This is a lighter take on the classic meat balls and pasta and is suitable for vegans and vegetarians.

  • 400g cherry tomatoes on the vine
  • 3 garlic cloves (no need to peel)
  • olive oil, for drizzling
  • Sea salt
  • 4 tbsp coconut oil
  • 5 large courgettes
  • 1 x 28g pack basil, leaves only

For the veggie balls:

  • 1 tbsp fennel seeds
  • 1 x 400g tin butter beans, drained
  • 300g sweet potatoes
  • 300g carrots
  • 300g parsnips
  • 75g flour of choice, sifted, plus extra for rolling (I used gram (chickpea) flour)
  • 1 tsp smoked sweet paprika (we used La Chinata)

Preheat the oven to 180°C, fan 160°C, gas 4.

To make the sauce, put the tomatoes on a baking tray with the garlic cloves; drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with sea salt and toss to mix. Roast in the oven for 20 minutes.

For the veggie balls, dry-toast the fennel seeds in a frying pan for 1-2 minutes or until they smell fragrant, then grind them using a pestle and mortar or whiz to a powder in a spice grinder, then tip into a bowl. Add the butter beans and mash them with a fork. Peel and grate the sweet potato, carrot and parsnips. Allow the mixture to sit for 5 minutes, in this time the gram flour will soak up some moisture from the vegetables and make it easier to form into balls. Add a drop of almond milk (or a milk of your choice) to bind the mixture if it still feels a little dry. Divide the mixture into 18 equal sized balls, about the size of a golf ball.

Heat the coconut oil in a frying pan and brown the balls, transferring them to a baking tray as they are ready.

Roast the veggie balls in the oven for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, use a spiralizer to turn the courgettes into noodles or a flat-bladed peeler to make ribbons; blanch in salted boiling water for 1 minute, then drain.

When the tomatoes are ready, discard the vines and put the tomatoes in a liquidiser along with any caramelised bits from the baking tray. Squeeze the garlic cloves from their skins and add those along with half of the basil; blend to a sauce.

To serve, divide the ‘courgetti’ between four shallow bowls, place 3 veggie balls on each and pour over some of the sauce. Finish with a drizzle of olive oil and scatter with rest of the basil.

more recipes


Please note: Although we do our best to ensure that recipes are correctly tagged according to ingredients, potential benefit, dietary requirements, type of dish or other filter, this is a manual process and errors may occur. Please therefore take care to thoroughly review the listed ingredients and method before commencing cooking to ensure none of the ingredients or methods given may cause adverse effects to anyone consuming the food. We do not provide any assurances nor accept any responsibility or liablity with regard to the originality, efficacy, quality or safety of recipes or articles.

This website uses some carefully selected affiliate links. If you buy through these links, we may earn an affiliate commission, at no additional cost to you. This helps to keep all of our online content free for everyone to access. Thank you for your support as every little helps.