Please think of the trees before you print this page. looks great on mobile devices too!

Viewing this page on an iPad? Rotate the screen to switch to kitchen mode.

Italian Meatballs with Spaghetti [vegan]

Italian Meatballs with Spaghetti [vegan]

Italian meatballs have to be the ultimate comfort food in many homes. Somehow a good stack of meatballs and spaghetti can easily make you feel at home no matter where you are. So today, we have for you the best vegan version of this all-time classic.

Nowadays, Italian meatballs are a staple in many American households. You can also find them in most Italian restaurant in the US. I think we all drool just by imagining a beautiful stack of meatballs over perfectly cooked spaghetti drenched with warm aromatic marinara sauce. 

Contrary to popular belief, this dish doesn't come from Italy. The big European immigration to America around 1920 brought to us Italian meatballs. A lot of immigrants were struggling economically and Italians started cooking meatballs since they were easy and affordable to make

italian meatballs with spaghetti ingredients

Even though, pasta and marinara sauce both have Italian origins they were also added to the dish during this time. People needed food that was filling and that reminded them of home. Spaghetti was one of the only Italian ingredient readily available and marinara sauce could be made from canned tomato paste. 

So, Italians invented these meatballs while in America. This makes it one of the first dishes of the so popular Italian-American cuisine. And I believe that's why it is so comforting and why it gives people that homey feeling as well. 

We have made other meatball recipes in the past and we fell in love with meatballs. A very popular recipe here at is our Swedish meatballs, they were a hit! But this time we wanted to honour those old traditions. And since we know everyone loves a good bowl of Italian meatballs I went hunting for the best recipe I could find. 

Vegan meatballs can be a bit tricky. You want to have the right flavour that gives you that homey feeling. But the consistency is also very important. If you don't get this one right the meatballs can either crumble while you cook them, they can come out too dry or they can feel too heavy. 

vegan meatballs

The sweet spot was not easy to find but I was determined. After trying a few different recipes I found on the internet I decided to do my own little experiment. I used different elements from different recipes to get it right both on flavour and consistency. 

I did have to use a few different ingredients to make these Italian meatballs. But we are only using ingredients that are easily available at your local supermarket. We want everyone to be able to enjoy this delicious dish.

A beautiful meal like this one might seem complicated to make. But it's the complete opposite of that. The perfect Italian meatballs are easy and quick to make with this recipe. You will want to make them every night! 

This is the perfect dinner recipe to enjoy with your family. It brings everyone to the table to share not only food but some much-needed quality time! 

italian meatballs with spaghetti top down

Prep time
10 minutes
Total time
Category: Lunch, Dinner
Serves: 4
Allergens: Gluten, Soy, Tempeh, Tomatoes


For the meatballs

  • 6 tablespoons almond milk
  • 4 tbsps breadcrumbs
  • 1 cup cooked kidney beans
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 2 tbsps ground flaxseed
  • 2 tbsps italian herb mix
  • 2 tsps olive oil
  • ½ medium onion (thinly sliced)
  • 2 tbsps soy sauce
  • 5 oz tempeh (crumbled)

For the sauce

  • ½ tsp black pepper (ground)
  • 4 tbsps ketchup
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • ½ medium onion (thinly sliced)
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • 2 cups tomato sauce

For the pasta

  • 12 oz spaghetti


  1. Preheat the oven to 390F (200C).
  2. Mix the flaxseeds with the almond milk and set aside.
  3. In a saucepan heat up the oil for the meatballs and sauté the onion for about 3-5 minutes.
  4. In a big bowl mix all the ingredients for the meatballs, mix well and use your hand to make the balls, I recommend making 2-3 balls per serving.
  5. Place the meatballs in a baking dish or on a baking tray covered with baking paper and bake for 20 minutes.
  6. Cook the pasta according to the instructions on the package until al dente.
  7. Heat up the oil for the sauce in saucepan and sauté the onion for about 3-5 minutes.
  8. Add the rest of the sauce ingredients and adjust taste.
  9. Serve the meatballs with pasta and some sauce on top, enjoy!

Did you make this recipe? Please take a photo, share it on Instagram and tag it with #veganio. We love to see your photos.

Get Weekly Meal Plans sends weekly meal plans straight to your inbox along with grocery lists and nutritional information.

Find Out More!