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Recipe: Vegan Sausage Balls

by Meghann on January 21, 2011

Do you ever have one of those experimental recipes that randomly comes to you out of no where and leaves you crossing your fingers it comes out?


That’s exactly what happened with these Vegan Sausage Balls.


And you know what? No finger crossing was needed. They came out awesome! Maybe I’m a real cook after all. ๐Ÿ˜‰

The inspiration began with this package of Tempeh I had in the fridge.


I’ve been toying with the idea of creating tempeh sausage patties for a while. I have a new love affair with Fennel Seeds and was convinced I could create a faux sausage using the fennel seeds to season the tempeh. Of course, just creating sausage patties wasn’t enough for me. I had to take it one step further. Enter Vegan Sausage Balls.


You’re going to want to bookmark this recipe – it’s good one. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Vegan Sausage Balls



  • 2 tbsp Vegetable Oil
  • 1 package Tempeh
  • 1/2 chopped Red Onion
  • 1.5 tbsp Fennel Seeds
  • 3 minced cloves of Garlic
  • 2 + 1 tsp Salt
  • 3 tsp Pepper
  • Dash Red Pepper
  • 1 tbsp Thyme
  • 3/4 cup WW Flour
  • 3/4 cup AP Flour
  • 2 tsp Baking Soda
  • 1/2 cup Nutri-Yeast
  • 1/4 + 1/2 cup Water

Preheat the oven to 350

Begin by adding the vegetable oil to a hot pan


Crumble the tempeh


Add the red onion and garlic

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Let the onion sweat a little before adding the fennel, 2 tsp of salt, pepper, and thyme.


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The ‘sausage’ mix should cook for 5-10 minutes or until the crumbles have a little color. Feel free to add a little water if mix looks too dry.


Once the ‘sausage’ is complete you can start on the rest of the sausage ball batter by combining all the dry ingredients (flours, 1 tsp of salt, & baking powder) in a big bowl.


To give the vegan version of sausage balls a slight cheesy taste mix a 1/2 cup of nutri-yeast in a separate bowl with a 1/4 cup of water.


Add the nutri-yeast to the flour mix, as well as another 1/2 cup of water and the ‘sausage’


Mix well! And don’t be afraid to add more water as needed.


You want a slight doughy texture – not too wet and not too dry. Just enough to be able to form ping pong size balls.


The dough should make just over a dozen and a half balls. Give or take depending on how you size them



Bake at 350 for 18 minutes.


Voila! Vegan Sausage Balls!


I told you it was a good one! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Now hand one to the closet family member and see if they can tell if there’s tempeh or sausage in there. ๐Ÿ˜‰


Ok, so they probably will know the difference, but I promise they won’t spit it out! These babies are good!

I had four for dinner this evening on top of a mix of Spinach, Tomato, and Mushrooms with a homemade dressing of Deli Mustard + EVOO + Balsamic Vinegar.


I thought the sausage flavor really came through on these. If you don’t have fennel seeds, I think sage leaves would work too.



For dessert I had a mini German Chocolate Cupcake and 1/2 a Chocolate Mousse Cupcake left over from our Sweet! run last night.


I forgot how much I love creating new recipes. I need to do more real recipes on here. Maybe that will be a new goal for 2011? ๐Ÿ˜‰

Good night friends!

{ 32 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Mel January 21, 2011 at 9:40 pm

Looks great. Thanks for the inspiration! (However, I don’t know how you could only eat four.) :-)
Mel recently posted..Physical Results – Hitting the Good Health Lottery


2 Kate (What Kate is Cooking) January 21, 2011 at 9:42 pm

They came out so well! I’ve never done anything fancy with tempeh before. This is a great idea :)
Kate (What Kate is Cooking) recently posted..Getting Organized- Part Deux


3 Lacey @ Lake Life January 21, 2011 at 9:45 pm

I loathe fennel seeds. Actually “loathe” might be putting it too lightly. I vote for your next recipe to be a healthy appetizer (without fennel seeds!) :-)
Lacey @ Lake Life recently posted..MLK day black-out


4 Katy (The Singing Runner) January 21, 2011 at 9:46 pm

These look great! I love tempeh and it looks like a unique way to use it! ๐Ÿ˜€
Katy (The Singing Runner) recently posted..Back to Reality and Looking to the Future


5 Lauren January 21, 2011 at 9:47 pm

Love those times when recipes just come to you! I had bbq tempeh over a vegan caesar salad this afternoon (but I didn’t make it).
Lauren recently posted..Redhead Ramblings


6 Kristy @ KristyRuns January 21, 2011 at 9:56 pm

Looks.So.Good. Yum! :)
Kristy @ KristyRuns recently posted..A Bad Day


7 Kiran January 21, 2011 at 10:00 pm

Wahoo for more recipes in 2011! These looks mouth-watering :)
Good night!
Kiran recently posted..Home-made Pumpkin Spiced Chai


8 Kelly January 21, 2011 at 10:10 pm

I love tofu but I never know what to do with tempeh besides just toasting it. Gotta try this recipe!
Kelly recently posted..The leftovers keep coming


9 Ash Bear January 21, 2011 at 10:15 pm

I don’t think Bo would ever try these but they look delicious! :)
Ash Bear recently posted..An Ugg Type of Day


10 Christin@purplebirdblog January 21, 2011 at 10:22 pm

Nice recipe!! I made a tempeh lasagna the other day where I ran the block through a food processor until it was ground beefy in texture and sauteed it just like taco meat!
Christin@purplebirdblog recently posted..FF- Iโ€™m Special


11 Amy @ Amy Starts to Run January 21, 2011 at 10:48 pm

Uuuuuuuuuuhhhhhhh. Best idea ever. Must make this weekend. I keep purchasing tempeh but letting it sit in the fridge till it expires. No more!
Amy @ Amy Starts to Run recently posted..Cibo Pizzeria


12 sarah (sarah learns) January 21, 2011 at 11:14 pm

looks like the perfect thing for vegan spaghetti & “meat”balls! :) i’ve never cooked with tempeh before, but this one looks like a winner! yay for a successful recipe creation!


13 Ann January 21, 2011 at 11:16 pm

I’m so impressed! These look delicious. And the best part is I have almost all the ingredients. Once I use up my meatless meatballs from Trader Joe’s run out, I’ll make yours and I bet they taste even better since they’re homemade!
Ann recently posted..A New Day


14 michelle January 21, 2011 at 11:20 pm

ooooo I am so going to make that.
michelle recently posted..Take that 5km!


15 Becky at Flybynyght January 21, 2011 at 11:27 pm

I just made delicious TVP ‘Meatballs’ – it’s all about thinking outside the box :)
Becky at Flybynyght recently posted..Recipe 3-52 TVP โ€˜Meatballsโ€™ Becky


16 Ashley January 22, 2011 at 12:13 am

Those look yummy. Will definitely make in the near future


17 Sana January 22, 2011 at 1:09 am

I love that you love fennel seeds as well!
Sana recently posted..Dominationn


18 Courtney @ The Granola Chronicles January 22, 2011 at 1:19 am

Can’t say I’ve ever tried tempeh! This recipe looks tempting though…


19 movesnmunchies January 22, 2011 at 3:12 am

AHH These sounds great.. i wish i had tempeh though!!!
movesnmunchies recently posted..Not Just Another Resolutions Post


20 Gabriela @ Une Vie Saine January 22, 2011 at 7:18 am

My boyfriend would love these. He likes tempeh almost as much as he loves sausage….bookmarking this!
Gabriela @ Une Vie Saine recently posted..Five Things


21 Ryane January 22, 2011 at 8:40 am

Ewwww, those onion chunks look huge! But definitely a good foundation recipe to roll off of.


22 Meghann January 22, 2011 at 8:44 am

I LOVE huge onion chunks, but that’s just me ๐Ÿ˜‰


23 chelsey @ clean eating chelsey January 22, 2011 at 8:48 am

You have absolutely no idea how much I love you right now.
chelsey @ clean eating chelsey recently posted..scholarly pup


24 Hope January 22, 2011 at 9:44 am

What a unique dinner! I’ve never tried tempeh before. I’m intriuged by it. I think I would like to try it sometime.
Hope recently posted..A Late Start &amp A Chipped Toothโ€ฆ


25 Tina @ Faith Fitness Fun January 22, 2011 at 10:17 am

They certainly look good. And I adore fennel seeds.
Tina @ Faith Fitness Fun recently posted..Sitting Pretty


26 Kacy January 22, 2011 at 10:26 am

Those look great! I wish I made up recipes more often.
Kacy recently posted..Surprise!


27 Casey @ Insatiably Healthy January 22, 2011 at 11:52 am

Okay I LOVE meatless meatball and I have that exact package of tempeh waiting in the fridge for me.
Coincidence? I think not.
Casey @ Insatiably Healthy recently posted..Aussie- Aussie- Aussie


28 Macrae January 22, 2011 at 12:28 pm

Haha I swear those look just like oatmeal chocolate chip cookies! That’d be quite a surprise :)
They do look good and I’d love to try tempeh!


29 Sarah January 22, 2011 at 7:31 pm

ohhhh i reallly hope i have tempeh so i can make this asap! They look great :)
Sarah recently posted..1 degree


30 Vanessa February 2, 2011 at 4:49 pm

Just put these in the oven! I subbed the fennel and thyme for sage and oregano because that’s all I had. Fingers crossed! =)


31 Vanessa February 2, 2011 at 5:20 pm

We have a winner! These were SO good!
Vanessa recently posted..Houston- We Have a Problem


32 Sara (Viva Catalina) February 4, 2011 at 1:30 pm

Just bought some tempeh and I’m making this tonight!!!!


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