You’re going to start by preheating the oven to 375° and cooking the quinoa and cauliflower over the stovetop in two separate saucepans. While that’s happening, you can prepare the buffalo sauce by whisking vegan hot sauce, melted vegan butter, garlic powder, and chili powder together in a bowl and setting it aside. Once the quinoa and cauliflower are cooked, you’ll want to remove them from the stovetop and place HALF of the cauliflower in the food processor, along with the garlic cloves, and pulse for 5-10 seconds, allowing it to crush up. You’ll then remove it from the processor and place it into a large bowl. Repeat this process with the second half of the cauliflower. Once all of the crushed up cauliflower is in the large bowl, stir in the quinoa.
Next, you’ll stir in the oregano and breadcrumbs. EDITOR’S NOTE: I’ve since made these three more times and I’ve found it best to add HALF of the buffalo sauce into the mix at this point. So, while stirring in the oregano and breadcrumbs, also stir in half of the buffalo sauce. Once everything is good and mixed, place the bowl in the refrigerator for about 15 minutes, allowing the mixture to cool down and be a bit more manageable. While you’re waiting for the mixture to harden, you can do the dishes, OR if you’re like me, you can check social media for the 45th time that day and leave the dishes for later when dishes are the last possible thing you feel like doing. Tip: don’t be like me.
Once all of the meatballs look good, transfer them to a baking sheet and bake for approximately 15 minutes or until the meatballs are firm.
This will probably take 50-60 minutes total if I’m being honest BUT it makes almost two dozen meatballs, so you should have leftovers! These cauliflower quinoa meatballs are great on their own, on salad, with a side of brussels sprouts—the possibilities are endless.
- 1 cup uncooked quinoa
- 2 cups water
- 1 cauliflower head
- 2 garlic cloves
- ¾ cup breadcrumbs
- ½ tsp dried oregano
- Optional: 1-2 tbsp flour (whole wheat, all purpose or oat)
- For the sauce:
- ½ cup hot sauce
- ¼ cup dairy free butter
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- ¼ tsp chili powder
- Preheat oven to 375°.
- Cook quinoa according to instructions on the package (with water over stovetop); at the same time, cook cauliflower in a separate pot over stovetop.
- While those are cooking, prepare the buffalo sauce: melt butter either in microwave or over stove and then stir in hot sauce, garlic powder and chili powder; set aside.
- Once the quinoa is done cooking, set aside; once the cauliflower is done cooking, drain and place HALF the cauliflower, along with the garlic, into the food processor and pulse for 5-10 seconds.
- Remove and pour cauliflower into a bowl before adding the second half of cauliflower to the food processor and repeating the process, removing and placing into the bowl.
- Stir quinoa, breadcrumbs, oregano, and HALF of the buffalo sauce together with the cauliflower and then place the bowl in the refrigerator for 10-15 minutes, allowing everything to cool off a bit.
- After 15 minutes, remove from refrigerator and, using your hands, form mixture into golf ball-sized meatballs, placing the meatballs directly onto a large skillet. If the mixture is too wet, add additional flour 1 tbsp at a time.
- Drizzle 1 tbsp of olive oil on the skillet and then cook meatballs on medium-high heat, making sure to be careful when flipping them over, until they’re golden brown on all sides.
- Pour a small amount of the rest of the buffalo sauce overtop of each meatball, making sure they all get covered with the sauce but you don’t want them to be soaked with sauce or else they will get soggy.
- Remove meatballs from skillet and place on a baking sheet; bake for approximately 15 minutes.
- Remove from oven and enjoy!