Vegetarian Meatballs with Soy-Honey Glaze

Vegetarian Meatballs with Soy-Honey Glaze

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This vegetarian dinner features a spicy soy-honey glaze that caramelizes on the chickpea-mushroom balls as they cook.


  • 1 lb. shiitake mushrooms, stemmed
  • 3 Tbsp. vegetable oil, plus more for greasing
  • 1 15.5-oz. can chickpeas, rinsed
  • 1 small red chile, thinly sliced into rounds
  • ½ cup low-sodium soy sauce
  • 3 Tbsp. unseasoned rice vinegar, divided
  • 1 2" piece ginger, peeled, finely grated
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely grated
  • ½ cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
  • 4 scallions, dark green parts finely chopped, white and pale green parts very thinly sliced
  • ⅓ cup finely chopped cilantro, plus ½ cup cilantro leaves with tender stems
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt, plus more
  • 2 celery stalks, thinly sliced, plus ½ cup leaves

Recipe Preparation

  • Preheat oven to 350°. Working in 3 batches, pulse mushrooms in a food processor until no pieces are bigger than ¼". Transfer to a lightly oiled parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet. Wipe out and reserve food processor.

  • Add chickpeas to sheet and toss to combine. Bake, tossing once halfway through, until chickpeas are slightly darkened and mushrooms have shrunk and are browned, 35–40 minutes. Let cool. Keep oven on.

  • Meanwhile, bring chile, soy sauce, honey, and 1 Tbsp. vinegar to a boil in a small saucepan. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, stirring frequently, until slightly thickened and foamy on top, about 10 minutes. Let cool.

  • Pulse eggs, ginger, garlic, panko, chopped scallion greens, ⅓ cup cilantro, and 3 Tbsp. oil in food processor until fully incorporated. Add chickpea-mushroom mixture and 1 tsp. salt and pulse until no pieces are bigger than ¼". Transfer chickpea mixture to a large bowl and chill at least 25 minutes to firm up.

  • Oil a new sheet of parchment and place on baking sheet. Roll chickpea mixture with your hands into golf-ball-size balls (about 1½"). Arrange balls on prepared sheet and brush with about one-quarter of spicy soy glaze mixture. Bake meatballs until firm and slightly darkened, 18–20 minutes.

  • Meanwhile, toss celery (with leaves) and remaining scallions, ½ cup cilantro leaves, and 2 Tbsp. vinegar in a medium bowl; season with salt.

  • Arrange meatballs on a platter and drizzle with sauce. Scatter celery salad over. Serve remaining sauce alongside.

  • Do Ahead: Soy glaze can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and chill. Meatballs can be formed 2 days ahead. Cover with plastic wrap on a rimmed baking sheet and chill.

Reviews SectionI made these and they were amazeballs. But I didn't really follow the recipe. Since fresh shitake mushrooms are $$$ I used 1/3 lb fresh shitake mushrooms, 100 gm dried shitakes, and 1/2 lb brown mushrooms. I soaked the dried ones, sliced all the mushrooms roasted them with the chickpeas, and the finely chopped ginger and garlic and a generous squirt of sesame oil (a few tbsps?). Then I threw the roasted stuff in to the food processor with the green stuff and chopped to 1/4" chunks. In a mixing bowl I mixed 3 eggs with 2 TBSP each white miso paste and tahini. Then added the chopped stuff with 1/2C gluten free panko. I founded I needed to add about 3/4 C of the mushroom soaking liquid to get it to the consistency of ground meat. I chilled it overnight, then rolled into 1 1/2" balls and rolled these in panko. I then lightly oiled a cookie sheet with sesame oil and sprayed the tops of the balls with cooking spray. Baked at 425 F for 20 mins, turning once, until nicely browned all the way around.AnonymousCalgary, Canada09/14/19I made a half recipe but used 2 eggs, for a slightly wetter mixture, and let it chill overnight in a bowl covered in plastic wrap. When I baked them, I set the oven to 325 instead of 350 and checked them after 15 minutes and keeping close eye on them until they were done. Previous comments made me weary of dry meatballs so I think these steps helped keep them moist and flavorful. They definitely aren't the consistency of meatballs but I really enjoyed them.For all the work the results are less than marginal. The oven temp is too high, there is too much salt in the recipe, the texture is more like a matza ball than a meat ball and the sauce over the balls is burnt at this temperature.I agree that it’s too expensive, not worth the effort and lacking in flavour and textureI enjoyed the flavour of these, but found texture just ever so slightly lacking. I may have pulsed the mushrooms a little too much. Overall they very aromatic and the sauce is super complementary to the savouriness of the meatballs. Served rather randomly with boiled new potatoes and a quick stir fry of broccoli, zucchini and chilies because CSA boxes make us do weird things for supper - but hey the potatoes soaked up the soy honey glaze really well and everything was fantastic.I think your oven temp or time is wrong. I followed this recipe exactly and ended up with the most dry, burnt veggie balls imaginable. I was really excited by this recipe because it seemed promising and I love the celery salad that went on top. In the end, after almost 2 hours of prep/cook/chilling time, I was humiliated by the outcome and threw half of it away.kaletherineWashington, DC05/15/18Made these tonight. Followed recipe exactly and they came out wonderful. Very flavorful!Andy, I followed the recipe exactly and they came out wonderful, just as you wrote it!!!This recipe yields approximately 8 balls. Rather expensive since the shiitake mushrooms alone were $13.16 at Trader Joes. The garbanzos are a little dry and grainy, but overall the sweet and sour with the crunchy greens were needed for adding another layer of flavor and texture. Followed the recipe, maybe they will be better tomorrow. I think a nice yoghurt /leben dip would have helped the dryness...I am making this now but wondering what about salt?Looks good. Trying to minimize grains so I was trying to figure out the overall carbs per ball. Anyone has made this that can tell me how many balls the recipe yields? I will review again with my experience once I try it.gonzogrubLos Angeles05/07/18This recipe IS vegetarian, but because their is egg - it is NOT vegan.The other commenter is incorrect.AnonymousBeaverton, OR05/07/18There is a one star review below from a person who says BA is “shortsighted” for posting a vegetarian recipe which contains eggs. This person clearly doesn’t understand the difference between a vegetarian and a vegan recipe. Furthermore, there are plenty of egg substitutes, both homemade and commercial that would allow someone to turn the recipe into a vegan recipe. Looks like Anonymous is the one with egg on their face ; )Wanted to make these, but these are NOT vegetarian as they have eggs in them. Boo. And, short sighted on Our site's part.

  • Serves4
  • Preparation Time10 mins
  • Cooking Time20 mins

Nutrition per serving

  • Energy742 Kcals
  • Fat47.4g
  • Saturated Fat22.7g


  • 500g maris piper potatoes, roughly chopped
  • 50g butter
  • 6 sausages of your choice
  • 2 tbsp Kikkoman Naturally Brewed Soy Sauce
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 tsp fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 red onion, cut into 6 wedges


Pre-heat the oven to 190°C / Gas 5.

Pop the sausages and onions onto an oven tray. Mix the soy sauce with the honey and thyme and pour over the sausages.

Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes, making sure to turn the sausages every so often in the sticky glaze.

Meanwhile, boil the potatoes just until soft, then drain into a colander. Mash with the butter and a little salt and pepper.

Scallion meatballs with soy-ginger glaze

It’s a fairly accurate indication of how charmed my life is these days that I considered the act of having to choose what I would make to bring to a New Years Party tomorrow difficult. If makes you wonder what I’d consider easy — which spa gift certificate I should use first to get a manicure before the party? Whether I should wear the earrings from this year’s or last year’s little blue box to the party? Which jet to take there? It’s all in a day of the glamorous life of a food blogger. Ahem.

In the last year, I’ve made a lot of jabs, mostly in my own direction, about how much various projects that I thought I’d handle like a pro have in fact kicked my ass — in order, those would be: a toddler, a cookbook, trying to have evenings and weekends work-free for Fun Family Things (even if they’re, like, “Let’s go buy mama more conditioner and eat warm pretzels along the way!”) and this weird blend of feeling like I have absolutely no time for myself while also spending too much time by myself. We are definitely not going to discuss how many hours I have spent this year wondering how anyone ever gets dinner on the table/keeps an apartment clean/gets any sleep/takes vacations… all while looking cute. Nope, definitely not that either. But if you could read through the self-deprecation and exhaustion, I always hoped you’d figure out that I was, am, totally blissed out by this life I ended up with. This gig — 4:30 a.m. wake-ups, this beast and all — is pretty sweet and I wouldn’t change a thing about it. I hope next year involves more of the same, with a little more travel and a lot more hanging out with people like you.

Back in the party snacks department, tiny meatballs will always win. No disrespect to spiced nut mixes, pickled things, deviled eggs and rich, fancy things on toast, what tiny meatballs have on all of them is that they feel like a little meal, and not just an additional layer of indulgence. Seeing as I lack the coordination these days to tuck in a wholesome dinner before heading out, it’s always my secret hope that the party will have things that look less like potato chips and more like an adorable replica of something with sustenance. This year, I’m bringing my own. The recipe hails from the Canal House Cookbooks, Volume 3. I went on and on about my love for them last year, and it hasn’t abated. In fact, now I even get a daily dose to make my lunch feel inadequate swoon over. These meatballs are from an early volume and it took me way too long to make them. I imagine they’d be as welcome at a Chinese New Year Party in January. They come together pretty quickly and unlike most meatball recipes, which require browning and then simmering or baking, they only require the one step to cook.

I hope whatever your New Years plans may be that you have a grand one, with lots of little bites, big kisses, and that someone makes you these in the morning.

Scallion Meatballs with Soy-Ginger Glaze
Adapted from Canal House Cooking, vol. 3

I fiddled with the recipe a bit, using less cilantro and ginger than called for and cooking the sauce for much longer than suggested, in hopes to make it a true glaze that would hang onto the sides of a dipped meatball. I almost dialed back the sugar, but once the glaze was all reduced, I ended up liking the sweetness to balance out the salty kickiness of the soy and ginger.

Note: This recipe is gluten-free if you use a soy sauce that is labeled gluten free. There were many options on the shelf at the store.

Yield: The original recipe suggest 24 but I got 34. This pleased me.

1/2 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup soy sauce, preferably Japanese or reduced sodium
1/2 cup mirin (sweet rice wine), or 1/2 cup sake with 1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup peeled, chopped ginger (I used half and it tasted like plenty to me adjust to your preference)
1 teaspoon ground coriander
4 whole black peppercorns (no, I did not count how many I put in there)

1 pound ground turkey
4 large or 6 small scallions, finely chopped
Half bunch cilantro, finely chopped (about 1/2 cup) (the cilantro-averse can use flat-leaf parsley)
1 large egg
2 tablespoons sesame oil, toasted if you can find it
2 tablespoons soy sauce
Freshly ground black pepper
Vegetable oil

Make sauce: Bring sugar and water to a boil in a small saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring until sugar melts completely. Reduce heat to a medium-low and add soy sauce, mirin, ginger, coriander and peppercorns. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until reduced by half, about 30 minutes, though this took me a bit longer to reduce it until it was syrupy enough that I thought it would coat, and not just dribble off the meatballs. You can keep it on a back burner, stirring it frequently, while browning the meatballs in the next step. Once it has reduced to your satisfaction, strain through a sieve.

Make meatballs: Mix turkey, scallions, cilantro, egg, sesame oil, soy sauce and several grindings of black pepper in a bowl. I like mixing meatballs with a fork it seems to work the ingredients into each other well. Roll tablespoon-sized knobs of the mixture into balls. The mixture is pretty soft I find it easiest to roll — eh, more like toss the meatballs from palm to palm until they’re roundish — meatballs with damp hands.

In a skillet over medium-high heat, generously cover bottom of pan with vegetable oil. Working in batches to avoid crowding, place meatballs in pan and cook, turning, until browned all over and cooked inside, about 8 minutes per batch. Arrange on a platter (a heated one will keep them warm longer), spoon a little sauce over each meatball, and serve with toothpicks. Alternatively, you can serve the glaze on the side, to dip the meatballs.

Do ahead: The sauce can be made up to 2 days in advance and refrigerated until needed. If needed, you can rewarm or keep the meatballs warm in a 200-degree oven until ready to serve. I’m storing mine in the fridge overnight and crossing my fingers they’ll taste fresh tomorrow.

Honey Soy Salmon

This sticky sauce has more flavor than I know what to do with.

Sticky, flavorful. and fast! This is my favorite way to cook up a couple of salmon fillets.

whole salmon fillets (skin on or off, whatever your preference)

  1. Season the salmon with salt and pepper. Heat a little olive oil in a nonstick skillet over medium to medium-high heat and place the salmon, skin side down (if you left the skin on) in the pan. Cook for 5 minutes on the first side, being careful not to burn the surface. Carefully flip to the other side and cook for another 2 minutes. Remove the salmon to a clean plate.
  2. In the same skillet, add the butter, honey, soy sauce, and juice from the 2 limes. (You can also zest in the lime before you juice it if you'd like.) Stir and cook over medium heat for a couple of minutes, until the glaze is thick. Taste and adjust the flavors, adding more of whatever you'd like. Cook if for another minute or two if you like the glaze very thick.
  3. Place the salmon back into the skillet and spoon the sauce all over the top. Stir together cooked rice with a little lime juice (and zest, if you'd like.) Serve the salmon over the rice, spooning on extra sauce. Sprinkle with chopped cilantro, add a lime wedge, and chow down.

If you&rsquove been reading my website for any length of time (ten years this week&mdashwhaaaa?) you will know that we aren&rsquot exactly what you&rsquod call a huge fish family.

In fact, we aren&rsquot much of a fish family at all.

In fact, you will hardly ever catch us eating fish.

In fact, I can&rsquot remember the last time a piece of fish entered our home.

Now let me clarify a couple of things! We love shellfish we&rsquoll eat shrimp to beat the band&hellipespecially if it&rsquos served with a steak. Ha. We just don&rsquot do much fish fish. While I love it, Marlboro and the kids don&rsquot love it, so we just stay where many families in landlocked states live: In chicken and beef territory.

If you&rsquore in a similar situation but ever happen to find yourself in the position of having a couple of beautiful pieces of salmon out of the blue, however, this is a tremendously delicious dinner that takes almost absolutely no time to make. Just the way I love to eat salmon (or any piece of fish, for that matter)&mdashwith a sticky sauce that&rsquos got more flavor than I know what to do with.

Beyond Hummus – What You Need to Know About Chickpeas

When most people think of chickpea recipes, hummus is the first thing that comes to mind. But that barely scratches the surface of what you can do with garbanzo beans.

These versatile legumes have an amazing, buttery taste that works well in a range of scenarios. Plus, they’re brimming with fiber, protein, and vitamins and minerals, making them worthy of being the main focus of any meal. If you are considering veganism or want to reduce your meat consumption, chickpeas are an invaluable source of protein.

Easy summer recipes

Don't be chained to the stove in the hot weather. We've got plenty of simple summer dishes, such as fresh salads, light nibbles and speedy desserts.

Korean chilli, sesame & honey chicken

A kebab always goes down well at a BBQ, and this Korean chicken with sweet, spicy and sticky glaze is our new favourite. Scatter over spring onions to serve

Chipotle gazpacho

Liven up your lunch with this easy, no-cook chipotle gazpacho soup. It's not only delicious but healthy too, delivering three of your 5-a-day and packed with vitamin C


  • 250g minced pork
  • 3 cloves of garlic, grated
  • 1 thumb of ginger, peeled and grated
  • 1/2 of a red chili, deseeded and minced
  • 2 handfuls of coriander, finely chopped
  • zest and juice of 1 lime
  • salt and pepper
  • 20g honey
  • 10 ml soy sauce
  • 1 tsp fish sauce
  • 1 tbsp of sesame seeds
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil/ vegetable oil
  • 1 handful of mint, finely chopped
  • 1 handful of spinach, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 red cabbage, shredded
  • 1 carrot, peeled and finely sliced
  • 1 spring onion, finely sliced
  • 100g rice noodles

Recipe for Budae Chigae or Korean Army Base Stew

This is a classic Korean recipe for a dish that's not so traditional—budae chigae. Use these instructions not only to make this innovative meal but also to learn the interesting history behind it. So, what is budae chigae and how did it come about?

The meal is a recent invention. It is mostly a lip-smacking mixture of Western meat, ramen noodles, vegetables and spices. It is easily customizable, as evidenced by the fact that a thousand variations of the dish exist and then some. Budae chigae first came to be during the famine years of the Korean War and the post-war period. When traditional meals weren't always readily available, Koreans managed to use leftover meat discarded or handed out from the U.S. army bases to make this dish with a very literal name.

"Budae" means military base, and "chigae" means stew in Korean. Because it's not a traditional dish, there is no exact recipe for budae chigae. However, the most popular meats used to make the stew are Spam, hot dogs, ground beef and sausages, so this isn't exactly the most healthful recipe. On the other hand, the popular vegetables used to make the stew include sprouts, scallions, onions and sookat (chrysanthemum leaves). If you don't like any of these meats or vegetables, swap them out for the ones you prefer.

Choosing the Right Ingredients for Honey Garlic Shrimp

  1. Shrimp. You can use fresh or frozen raw shrimp. Thaw the shrimp completely before starting. Be sure to peel and devein the shrimp first. You can leave the tails on or remove if desired. If using already cooked shrimp, see recipe note below.
  2. Honey + garlic + soy. This marinade/sauce is packed with so much glorious flavor and is inspired by some wonderful flavors often used in Asian cuisine. (We also LOVE this honey soy sauce glazed salmon from Omnivore’s Kitchen.)
  3. Green onions. This optional garnish adds freshness and a nice color contrast.

What to serve with Honey Garlic Chicken Breast

There’s enough sauce to drizzle over veggies and soak into rice or whatever you serve it with. The flavour is strong enough such that you don’t need loads – a bit goes a long way!

It’s pictured above with Cauliflower Rice (tossed with a squeeze of lemon, parsley, salt and pepper) with Cucumber Salad on the side.

Even though it’s got soy sauce in the Honey Garlic Sauce, this doesn’t taste specifically Asian-y. But it’s versatile enough that it will go just as well with Fried Rice as it will with a Macaroni Salad or even Mac and Cheese. Yes really! Try it once and you’ll understand (it only takes 12 minutes, you’ve got the time!!) – Nagi x


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