Satisfying Spaghetti and Eggplant Meatballs

September 22, 2015

There are a million ways to prepare spaghetti and meatballs and this meatless version is one of my favorites.  Eggplant meatballs are easier to prepare compared to traditional meatballs because they don't need to be tended to as much as their meaty counterparts.  This means less work for you.  Eggplants are filled with water which helps keep these meatballs moist.  You'll love this new take on a classic and find yourself spaghetti and eggplant meatballs time and time again.

Spaghetti and Eggplant Meatballs

Ingredients:

For the meatballs:
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 large eggplant, cubed
1 medium white onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
1/4 cup fresh Italian flat leaf parsley, minced
1 cup breadcrumbs
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese (plus extra for garnish)
1 tsp. red pepper flakes
kosher salt and freshly grated black pepper, to taste

For the spaghetti:
1 pkdg thin spaghetti (whole wheat or not)
1 recipe tomato sauce

Directions:

Step 1: Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat.  Add the eggplant and cook for 10 to 15 minutes until the cubes have softened.  Scoop out the eggplant and add to the bowl of a food processor.  

Step 2: Add the onion and garlic to the hot skillet and cook until fragrant and onions appear translucent.  Add the onion to the food processor bowl along with the parsley and red pepper flakes.  Season with a pinch of salt and pepper.  Pulse the mixture until the ingredients are finely chopped.

Step 3: Place the chopped vegetables into a large bowl and mix in the breadcrumbs and parmesan cheese.  Stir until all ingredients are combined.  Form two inch meatballs and place on a greased baking tray.  

Step 4: While you are forming the meatballs, preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

Step 5: Bake the meatballs for 25 to 30 minutes or until golden brown and crispy.

Step 6: Place a large pot of water to boil.  Cook spaghetti according to package directions.  

Step 7: Warm the tomato sauce in a large skillet and add the cooked spaghetti.  Serve with the eggplant meatballs and extra parmesan cheese.

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