Herb chickpea balls with tomato sauce

Even vegetarians don’t have to miss out on the classic combination of pasta and meatballs! Our no-fuss, meat-free version, the Herb Chickpea Balls with Tomato Sauce, is here to satisfy your cravings. These aromatic chickpea balls, delicately seasoned with herbs and spices, are a perfect replacement for traditional meatballs. Served with a rich and flavorful tomato sauce, this dish is a crowd-pleaser that will leave everyone wanting more. Experience the perfect blend of taste, texture and healthy ingredients in this vegetarian delight.


  • 2 slices of white bread, remove the crust and tear into pieces
  • 75g Parmesan or vegetarian alternative, 50g coarsely chopped and 25g grated
  • 400 g canned chickpeas, drained
  • 3 cloves of garlic, 2 coarsely chopped and 1 crushed
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • small handful of basil leaves, chopped
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 tbsp olive oil, plus some for greasing
  • 560 ml jar of passata with onions and garlic
  • 200g spaghetti, linguine or tagliatelle

Preparation steps

  1. Preheat the oven to 220°C/200°C fan/gas 7.
  2. In a food processor, combine the bread and coarsely chopped Parmesan. Pulse until the mixture reaches a breadcrumb consistency.
  3. Add the chickpeas, coarsely chopped garlic, half of the oregano, a few basil leaves and some spice to the food processor. Pulse until the mixture begins to come together.
  4. With the motor running, gradually add just enough egg to hold the mixture together.
  5. Form 18 small balls from the mixture and place them on an oiled baking tray.
  6. Cook the chickpea balls in the oven for 15 minutes, turning them halfway through.
  7. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, sauté the crushed garlic in the olive oil for 1 minute.
  8. Add the passata, remaining oregano and some seasoning to the pan. Let the sauce simmer until the chickpea balls are ready.
  9. Cook the pasta according to the package instructions.
  10. Once the chickpea balls are cooked, serve them over the noodles.
  11. Top with the tomato sauce and the remaining basil leaves.
  12. Sprinkle with grated Parmesan.

Nutritional Information

607 19g 6g 85g 9g 6g 30g 2.15g

Equipment and tools

To prepare herb chickpea balls with tomato sauce, you will need the following equipment and tools:

  • A food processor
  • A mixing bowl
  • A baking tray
  • parchment paper
  • A frying pan
  • A wooden spoon
  • A cooking pot
  • A sieve

Allergen information

Please note the following allergen information for herb chickpea balls with tomato sauce:

  • This recipe contains bread that may contain gluten. Use gluten-free bread if necessary.
  • Parmesan cheese is used, but you can use a vegetarian alternative if desired.

Storage and leftovers

If there are any leftovers from the herb chickpea balls with tomato sauce, here are some storage tips:

  • Allow the dish to cool completely before storing.
  • Store the chickpea balls and tomato sauce separately in airtight containers.
  • Store the chickpea balls and tomato sauce in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • Heat the chickpea balls and tomato sauce separately before serving.

Health Benefits of Herb Chickpea Balls with Tomato Sauce

Herb Chickpea Balls with Tomato Sauce are a delicious and nutritious dish that combines the benefits of chickpeas with a flavorful tomato sauce. This recipe not only satisfies your taste buds but also offers numerous health benefits. Let’s take a closer look at the health benefits of the ingredients used in this recipe:


Chickpeas are the main ingredient in this recipe and provide numerous health benefits. Chickpeas are rich in fiber, aid digestion and promote a healthy intestine. They are also a great source of plant-based protein, which is essential for muscle growth and repair. In addition, chickpeas contain important minerals such as iron, magnesium and potassium, which contribute to energy production and general well-being.


Garlic, both minced and crushed, adds a spicy touch to this dish while providing a number of health benefits. It has been used for centuries for its potential medicinal properties. Garlic is known to have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects and can help strengthen the immune system. It may also promote heart health by lowering blood pressure and cholesterol levels.

Oregano and basil

Using dried oregano and fresh basil in this recipe not only enhances the flavor but also brings a dose of health benefits. Oregano is rich in antioxidants that help fight free radicals and reduce inflammation in the body. Basil, on the other hand, is a good source of vitamins A, K and C, as well as minerals such as calcium and iron. It may also have antimicrobial properties and aid digestion.

Tomato sauce

The tomato sauce in this recipe is made from pickled passata with onions and garlic – a practical and tasty option. Tomatoes are a rich source of vitamins C and A as well as antioxidants such as lycopene. Lycopene has been linked to a reduced risk of certain cancers and may also help improve heart health. Additionally, tomatoes are low in calories and high in water content, making them a good choice for weight management.

Whole wheat pasta

In this recipe it is recommended to serve the herbed chickpea balls with spaghetti, linguine or tagliatelle, which are whole wheat pasta. Whole wheat pasta is a healthier alternative to refined pasta because it contains more fiber, vitamins and minerals. It provides sustained energy, helps regulate blood sugar levels and supports digestive health.

By combining these nutritious ingredients, Herb Chickpea Balls with Tomato Sauce are a healthy dish that will not only satisfy your taste buds but also nourish your body. So, enjoy this tasty and healthy meal!

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