Vegan Lentil Balls Sweet and Sour Sauce Recipe has so many tasty ingredients wrapped up in one appetizer. Perfect crispy little baked balls are served with a rich sauce.
In fact, in Spain they have whole restaurants devoted to appetizers and those little plates are called tapas. Rolled Toasted Mushroom Appetizer and Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto Tortilla Rollups would be perfect at any tapas bar.
Perfect at your house for that matter.
This recipe is actually two quality recipes that have been combined.
The sweet and sour sauce can be used in many other recipes and you may also find yourself eating these little lentil balls without a sauce and that’s okay, too.
We often think of Asian food when we think of sweet and sour sauce. The truth is they've been used the world over for centuries.
This sweet and sour sauce recipe doesn't have a nationality. It is just all-around good and is the perfect base to hold crisp lentil balls.
What Other Ways can I Serve Vegan Lentil Balls?
Besides as an appetizer you can serve just as is, with the sauce, for a main meal over rice.
Serve the lentil balls heated through with marinara sauce and fill up a hoagie bun.
Lentil balls would be phenomenal served with a white sauce and pasta.
BBQ sauce and lentil balls are a match made in heaven.
Air fried instead of baked in the oven and you get an even crispier ball that uses less oil.
Served over the holidays next to cranberry sauce would be a really nice change-up.
What Other Ways Can I Use This Sweet and Sour Sauce Recipe?
Perfect as a marinade for tofu cubes. Then bake and serve with more sauce - right over basmati rice.
Serve warm with air-fried vegan tortellini or ravioli, like a dip.
Toss with fresh stir fried vegetables such as snap peas, asparagus, zucchini, carrots and sweet potatoes. Always good over rice.
Brush sweet and sour sauce on vegetable kabobs for a real treat.
Make a Vietnamese sweet and sour soup with bean sprouts and cabbage.
Helpful Tools for Making Vegan Lentil Balls Sweet and Sour Sauce
This Hamilton Bench Food Processor is a nice large 12 cup size.
A 10" skillet is a good all-around size. I live the curved edges on this one.
24 mini muffin tin that is good for so many things.
The modern chafing dish. A 2 qt. crock pot that you can use with the lid on or off. You can keep the lid off with the heat off and this will keep warm quite a while. When you need to heat it up again just put the lid on and turn to warm. In a few minutes, you can remove the lid again. Heat off or the liquid will cook away.
Vegan Lentil Balls with Sweet and Sour Sauce
- 1 cup dried lentils, rinsed and drained
- 2 cups water
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 8 ounces white mushrooms
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- ½ cup onion - onion, white, finely diced
- ½ cup red bell pepper, finely diced
- 1 cup carrot, grated or one carrot
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried parsley
- ¼ cup white wine
- ½ cup vegetable stock/broth
- ¾ cup breadcrumbs
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil for mini muffin tins
To make the sweet and sour sauce:
- 4 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil
- ⅔ cup apricot preserves
- 6 tablespoons BBQ sauce
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- ¼ teaspoon dried oregano
- ½ teaspoon tabasco sauce
- Bring the water to a boil. Add the lentils and salt and bring back to a boil.
- Cover and lower the heat to medium and cook al dente which is 10 minutes. Drain and cool the lentils.
- Add the mushroom to a food processor and 'pulse' until the mushrooms are coarsely chopped.
- Add the lentils to a food processor with the mushrooms and pulse a few more time to chop and incorporate the lentils.
- In a skillet heat the oil to medium high heat. Add the chopped onion and sauté for 5 minutes.
- Add the bell peppers and carrot and saute another 5 minutes.
- Turn the chopped mushrooms and lentils into the skillet along with the sauteed vegetables.
- Add the garlic powder, oregano and parsley. Cook 4 minutes.
- Add the white wine and cook 1 minute.
- Add the vegetable broth, breadcrumbs, salt and pepper. Stir and cook for 1 minute then set aside to cool.
- While the mixture is cooling - lightly oil mini muffin tins. Use a bit of a paper towel to dunk in the oil and wipe around a few of the tins. Re-dunk and wipe again. This is great in browning the balls and they will also fall right out of the tins after cooked.
- When the lentil mixture is cool enough to handle make 48 balls. Drop each ball in the prepared muffin tins. I have two tins of twelve so I cook these in two batches.
- Bake at 350° for 40 minutes turning the balls over after 20 minutes. You can use a fork to just touch and spin. They move very easily.
- When baking time is up remove from the oven and the tins and let the balls cool on a rack.
- You can freeze the balls at this point or keep in the refrigerator for 5 days or continue on with the recipe.
To make the sweet and sour sauce:
- Put all of the ingredients into a food processor and process until smooth - about 30 seconds.
- You can also freeze the sauce at this point or keep in the refrigerator for 5 days or continue on with the recipe.
- Put the sweet and sour sauce in a saucepan that will also hold the lentil balls.
- Add the balls and heat through over medium heat for about 4 minutes.
- Serve in a chafing dish or a mini slow cooker to keep warm. Serve with toothpicks.
So you can see, two great recipes in one. And one great recipe with both.
If you have an air fryer don't forget to give these lentil balls a try in there. They are so good.
Oh, before you go I want to point you to another baked lentil balls recipe that I have on the blog.
They are from Jackie Sobon's cookbook. I reviewed Vegan Yack Attack On The Go and the lentil balls are big and delicious.
Finger food is definitely fun. I've never though about making vegan meatballs. That sauce sure does sound amazing. Even my meat loving family would probably go for these!
That sauce over the lentil balls got me. I love the sound of using lentils in these balls. I usually make meatballs and my kids love them - I should try these to get them to eat some lentils lol.
Bintu | Recipes From A Pantry
These look like such a delicious appetizer, especially with the accompaniment of sweet and sour sauce!
Every time I hear sweet and sour it makes me wanna lick my fingers. It is hard to believe that these balls are vegan, too! Two awesome things in one - definitely a worthy recipe. And I love tapas - definitely something to try when you go to Spain!
Tried making this recipe and the lentil balls all broke apart in the sauce and the sauce wasn’t enough for the recipe. Should I have doubled the sauce? I made 48 balls just like the recipe called for. Any tips would help. Thanks
I really don't know what happened Toni but do you have an air fryer by any chance? I have also done them in an air fryer and I was amazed at how well they came out. They were almost like they were fried (firmness wise). You can certainly double the sauce recipe. That would be no problem.