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“Meatball” Subs

Dish Type: Sandwiches and Wraps


  • Sandwich:
  • 12 to 16 "Wheatballs" (recipe below)
  • 2 cups Marinara Sauce
  • 1/3 cup Cheezee Sauce (recipe below)
  • 4 small Sub Rolls or other Sandwich Rolls
  • "Wheatballs":
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked (or 1, 15.5OZ) can Chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup chopped White Mushrooms
  • 2 Garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons minced Fresh Parsley
  • 2 tablespoons Tomato Paste
  • 2 tablespoons Soy Sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Water
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Olive Oil, plus more for cooking
  • 1/2 cup Dry Bread Crumbs
  • 1/2 cup Wheat Gluten Flour (Vital Wheat Gluten)
  • 1/4 cup Nutritional Yeast
  • 1 teaspoon dried Basil
  • 3/4 teaspoon dried Oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon Paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon Black Pepper
  • Cheezee Sauce:
  • 2/3 cup Nutritional Yeast
  • 3 tablespoons Cornstarch
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons Salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon Garlic Powder
  • 2 cups Plain Unsweetened Soy Milk (or water)
  • 1 tablespoon Olive Oil
  • 2 teaspoons fresh Lemon Juice
  • 2 teaspoons Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Yellow Mustard


To make Sandwich:

In a large saucepan, combine the “wheatballs” and marinara sauce, and heat over medium heat.  Use a potato ricer to smash and flatten the balls, retaining some shape and texture.  Cook stirring, until heated through, about 5 minutes.  Keep warm.  Preheat the broiler.

Heat the cheezee sauce in a small saucepan and keep warm.

Split the sub rolls and place them, cut side up, on a baking sheet.  Toast the rolls, then arrange them on plates.

Divide the “wheatball” mixture and drizzle each with some of the cheezee sauce.  Serve hot.

To make “Wheatballs”: (28 “wheatballs”)

In a food processor, combine the chickpeas, mushrooms, garlic, and parsley and pulse until coarsely ground, but not pureed.  Add the remaining ingredients and pulse to combine.

Use a rubber spatula to scrape the mixture into a large bowl and knead the mixture until well blended, about 2 minutes.

Pinch off a small piece of the mixture, press it together in your hand, then roll into a 1 1/2-inch ball.  Repeat with the remaining mixture.

In a large skillet, heat a thin layer of oil over medium heat.  Add the wheatballs, in batches if necessary, and cook until browned all over, moving them in the pan as needed for even browning, about 5 minutes.

Repeat until all the wheatballs are cooked.  They are now ready to use in recipes. If not using right away, cool completely, then cover and refrigerate or freeze until needed.  Properly stored, they will keep in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days or in the freezer for 3 to 4 weeks.

To make Cheezee Sauce: (about 2.5 cups)

In a medium saucepan, combine the yeast, cornstarch, salt, and garlic powder.  Turn the heat on medium and whisk in the soy milk.  Cook, stirring, until the sauce thickens, about 1 minute.

Remove from the heat and stir in the oil, lemon juice, vinegar, and mustard.  The sauce is now ready to use.  If not using right away, refrigerate the sauce in a container with a tight-fitting lid, where it will keep for several days.

Reprinted with permission from  Vegan on the Cheapby Robin Robertson, Wiley, 2010.

Read the blog post where this recipe originally appeared: Vegan Meatball Subs Recipe

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