Gluten free rolls stuffed with incredibly flavorful tempeh meatballs that are seasoned perfectly, drenched in marinara sauce, and topped with nondairy cheese. These Vegan Meatball Sub Sandwiches are almost in desperate need of a fork and knife otherwise they’re almost impossible to shove into your mouth. Then again, it’s perfect for those who like a challenge.
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As much as I enjoy baking, cooking really is my first love. In fact, when I started up Fork and Beans, that is all I mainly focused on. Today just feels like the perfect time to reconnect with something that I love so very much as a means to soothe and comfort me. And vegan meatball sub sandwiches can be quite the comfort food…
RELATED: Baked Buffalo Tempeh Tenders
Ground up tempeh, rolled into balls and smothered with marinara sauce make these Vegan Meatball Sub Sandwiches a delicious dinner option!Print
Vegan Tempeh Meatballs
- Prep Time: 15 mins
- Cook Time: 20 mins
- Total Time: 35 mins
- Yield: 10 Tempeh Meatballs 1x
- (1) 8 oz. package tempeh, steamed for 10 minutes to soften
- 3/4 c. gluten-free breadcrumbs
- 1/2 c. onion, thinly chopped
- 1 Tbsp. flaxseed meal + 3 Tbsp. warm water
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 Tbsp vegan worcestershire sauce
- 2 Tbsp. fresh basil, thinly chopped
- 1 Tbsp. fresh parsley, thinly chopped
- 1/2 tsp. fresh oregano, chopped
- 1/2 tsp. fresh thyme, chopped
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1 jar of favorite spaghetti sauce
- Gluten free rolls (like Schaar)
- Heat oil in a nonstick skillet on medium heat.
- In a food processor, mix all the ingredients together with the exception of spaghetti sauce and 1/4 c. of the breadcrumbs.
- Form into 1 1/2″ balls. Roll into remainder breadcrumbs until fully coated. Fry on skillet until browned on all sides. Do in batches if needed.
- Lower heat and allow to cool down a little and then pour the jar of spaghetti sauce into the skillet full of all 10 meatballs. Allow to simmer for 10 minutes.
- Plop 3 meatballs onto a gluten free roll, coat with nondairy cheese and broil until browned.
RELATED: The Ultimate Tempeh Sandwiche
Everything about this recipe screams EAT ME!!!! So go ahead and do it. Make these vegan meatball sub sandwiches and eat the heck out them.
Those meatballs look delicious. I am definitely making them during the next few days. I am also curious to try them with pasta although I feel it would be too overwhelming mixing the kidney beans with pasta. What do you think?
hello 1/2 c. and 1TB. how many grams correspond? Here in Italy we have other unit of measure does not create a conversion table and help me prepare your great recipes? I hope so thanks 🙂
Honestly, that I am not sure of Angelica 🙁 There has got to be a website that converts it for you, I hope!
Is it just dry active yeast or some other type? I always get confused with the types..
Although I absolutely stink at making bread any kinda bread I don’t know what I do wrong but it never turns out 🙁 needless to say this one did not turn out either so I had to use a store bought one 🙁 any tips ?
Spectacular these are AMAZING gonna be a regular dish in my house ! Boy did I miss a good meatball sub it’s been years I am so glad I finally found your recipes no other compare !!
Thank you 🙂
Homerun hit–hooray! So happy you like them, Tina. They actually sound really good right now. Maybe I too will make them for dinner 🙂 xo!
Oh man, I can’t get over the fact that you have sooo many recipes that hubby and I can eat together! I’m vegan and he’s gf and can’t eat flax, nuts, soy, or coconut, so I make separate meals almost always. I need to stock up on some flours that I’ve run out of, and then the baking will commence!
I know how difficult it can be to work with everyone’s issues in the home so I just love it when I can help bring households together 😉 Hope you like what you find over here and if you ever have any questions, just ask!
am I missing something, doesnt worcestershire sauce contain anchoveies??
Hi curious, there are lots of vegan options for Worcestershire sauce, Annies being one of them.
Can the brown rice flour be subbed for another gluten free flour? I have teff on hand and sorghum.
I’m a wee bit late in the response but this will help: http://www.forkandbeans.com/2013/12/30/guide-gluten-free-flours/
Gee Gee DiB
Hi Cara, thank you for this recipe, I have been looking for a good meatball recipe. I saw a comment concerning the crumbling. I used about a 1 Tbsp of soaked chia seed as my egg substitute, worked out really well. they turned out great. I was wondering if you have tried baking them instead of frying?
Hi Gee Gee DiB! No I have not tried baking them but if you do, let me know how it goes. I would think 375 degrees and baking them 10 minutes on each side would be good 🙂
Wonderful to have met you last week at the Anytime! Good luck on your move. I tried the meatball recipe and I don’t know what I did but they totally fell apart haha! Does the brand of tempeh (how to properly steam it) or brand of breadcrumbs make a difference? Okay so I am new to Vegan cooking so most of the ingredients and preparations are foreign to me. Maybe I should stick to making salads.
Any advise would be lovely!
Hi Angie–so great to meet you too! Total bummer about the meatballs falling apart 🙁 Usually when that happens, it’s all in the binding (which eggs are the typical binder, as are the breadcrumbs). So next time if you find this happening, add more breadcrumbs. Also, the flaxmeal gel (flax plus water) because an egg substitute that does the trick in place of eggs. Did you put all the ingredients into a blender too? Maybe the tempeh wasn’t ground enough to resemble meat? Just thoughts here but don’t give up! This is a total learning curve. Just keep playing around!! xo Let me know if that helps…
Heather @ Better With Veggies
Oh Cara, I’m so sorry that you’re going through a rough patch. I’m thinking of you and praying things get better. This recipe sounds awesome, just pinned it for dinner later this week!
Thank you Heather! Things are definitely getting better, it’s just the emotions of dealing with saying goodbye to the things you have had in your life for so long is what hurts at times, you know? But those tempeh meatballs are a pick-me-up, in fact, I am thinking that I should make some again this week–they are that good! Hope you like them. xo
Heather @ Better With Veggies
My hubby made these for us last night (although we bought the bread) and they are delicious!!
Oh YAY! I am so happy to hear that you liked them, Heather! xo
These meatballs look delicious! Who would think they are vegetarian?
And trust me, they *taste* super delicious too! This entire week I have been sad that I didn’t make more because that is all that I want to eat 🙂 Thanks for the comment! xo
Look on the bright side, Cara. Crying in your car is a lot better than picking your nose in your car. Why people think we can’t see them when they are in their car and don’t have blackened windows is beyond me. I have been a car crier myself. There is nothing a vegan meatball sub can’t make better, and your meatball hero (NY term) looks like it kicks ass. Many hugs.
If I’m crossing the street I’ll stop in front of their car, smile a big ass obnoxious smile and wave. Then they usually honk at me and pretend they weren’t just crying. Pft.
Anyway – enough with the crying, man! You’ve got new, beautiful things going on in your life – no sense in crying over the old 😉 What if the “old” ends up coming around? Is this a talk we should have in private? AM I MISSING SOMETHING?
I love you. And meatballs. But you, more.
I love YOUR meatballs.
The crying is grieving–it’s hard to stop that when you have to experience it in order to move on to the new, you know? It’s okay. It’s just water anyways 🙂
Just stumbled upon your blog. I too am feelin a little down in the dumps these days. But, as everyone has said, time does heal all wounds, and for me, things are never as bad in the morning. Either way, I am glad I found your blog and this looks fantastic. Just wanted to leave you a little note! Ps: Have you heard of Dr. Andrew Weil? I’m reading his book ‘Spontaneous Happiness’ right now and it’s helping me. Talks about how one problem with the Western mindset is how we are all taught that we always must be happy! Not realistic.
Anyway, good luck and keep up the good work with the blog!
Loving the book suggestion. I’m reading (Buddhist nun) Pema Chodoron’s “Comfortable with Uncertainty” right now and I love it. Can’t wait to check that one out, thanks!
Sending you some love your way! May awareness and loving-kindness fill your day 🙂 xo, Cara
Um yes please – this sub looks so incredible, I can totally picture you with sauce and cheese dribbling down your chin as you enjsoyed this perfection of a “meatball” sub!
….and maybe those sitting next to you just think you are singing a really emotional and empowering song?
Hey, do you have a hidden camera set up in my house or something? It’s as if you just described the night I made these with a messy face and all… 🙂
It will get better… you will feel better… time heals all 🙂
Thank you, Lou. xo
My mother used to say,”this, too shall pass,” whenever I was in a crises. It annoyed me at the time but, of course she was right. Living in the moment and not hiding from your feelings takes strength and courage, and that strength and courage will see you through. Hugs.
The recipes look scrumptious — I envy your ability to create such an inviting-looking gluten-free roll.
Mothers are typically always right, aren’t they? Damn them and their wisdom 🙂 Thank you for such a thoughtful comment, Andrea–I really appreciate it from the bottom of my heart! xo
Gabby @ the veggie nook
If I looked over in my car and saw you crying, Id put my car in park and come over and gave you a huge hug. And a cookie 🙂 (And yes I carry comforting snacks with me at all times). Just keep pushing through, there is a light at the end of the tunnel!
Fabulous recipes Cara. I’ve never had a meatball sub (vegan or otherwise) but I can imagine this would be insanely tasty!!
Sending you love! xoxo
I really hope that the fact that you carry comforting snacks is true! If so, I want to hang out with you all of the time (and not just for the snack-carrying fact) 🙂
gorgeous bread! and those saucy delicious meatballs.. if this is the real food you eat everyday.. then i am moving in!
I might not notice you at all in the car beside me.. my peripheral vision sucks. but when i do, i might get down and ask you if you were feeling alright and if I could help in any way.
Hope you get through this really quickly. and the tides calm down for a smooth ride. take care. Hugs.
I learned how to make gorgeous bread from the bread goddess (you, of course!) And this *is* how I always eat at dinner so looks like a move to Cali is a must now. Hey, you said it, not me 🙂
i know i know.. there is talk every few months about moving to CA.. but it usually ends up in lets move back to India.. 🙂 both are equally tough at this moment.
How could I compete with India???
I will feed you donuts every day 🙂
Sorry to hear you’re feeling down still, Cara. Every cloud and all that. It’s always darkest before the dawn. I’m not very good at this :P. Good thing you have those essential oils… hah. These look delicious. Nice to see a non-DOUGHNUT centric post :P.
I think I most amused at watching Nick try to be comforting and say nice words. I’m pulling up a chair and demanding more supportive phrases to be used. Go.
The problem is, Cara, I know not any more…
Brooke (Crackers on the Couch)
I’m sorry you’re having such a hard time right now, Cara. I don’t know all that’s going on. I hope you’re through it sooner rather than later. I am a seriously horrible motivational speaker. But you know you could be living in a van down by the river right now… Also, what is a “stone of sheet?”
Don’t even get me started on Matt Foley. Highest quoted sketch of all time of mine. Love. See? You *are* good at motivational speaking after all!! xo
You know what you’re feeling and feeling it, which is the first step towards change a growth. It sucks at time and it’s scary, but most things worth fighting for are. Plus, it sounds like you have great support, and when all else fails–and heck, even when it doesn’t–feed your feelings 😉
Maybe that explains why I have been eating potato chips and wine for the past week. It’s what my feelings wanted 🙂
xoxo!!! So happy to know you, Abby!
Who says there is anything wrong with feeling rather than stuffing our emotions? Mourning the losses that change brings leaves you free to accept the possibilities of tomorrow. I’m sending you ten thousand million kazillion hugs. And this – Alan Cohen: “Scared and sacred are spelled with the same letters. Awful proceeds from the same root word as awesome. Terrify and terrific. Every negative experience holds the seed of transformation.” See? You’re perfect!
And don’t you DARE argue with me, little miss!
I would never argue with you on this one. I am a full supporter of everything you said and I love it so! Absolutely beautiful, my friend!
Now you are making me cry too like a blithering idiot. Get your butt out here and I will hug your guts out and heal you and make you better. Bring the meatball sub too you ratbag.
Hah, ratbag. What a fantastic adjective… noun? It confuses me a little. It’s certainly not a verb.
I’m not sure what it is, adjective…. I think, but I use it with the utmost affection for Cara!
I believe it is a noun 🙂 Person, place or thing–and since I am a person, so is ratbag.
I love how you say you love my guts. That has to be one of the best expressions, Somer. I love your guts too. And I love being called a ratbag. I felt nothing BUT extreme love in that term, I really did!! xo
P.S. Wild Orange is quickly becoming my favorite oil, by the way…
I love it too. I put it in a smoothie this morning. Wowza.
Good, someone of lower caliber might be offended. You know any foul name I call you will be an endearment! I can’t help it, I grew up with 5 brothers who razzed the crap out of me 😉 It’s a sign of true love!
And I grew up with a father and brother who called me every bad name in the book and I learned to translate them into terms of endearments. You speak my language sister 🙂
good, we understand each other then, you hoser. Put on your big girl pants and do something fun this weekend. If you stay at home blubbering and pining away I will be forced to send even more taunts your way.
Look, you moron. I have been out all flipping day, alright??! And yes, I was having fun if you must know, so lay off!
More taunts are always encouraged regardless, however…
Blah ha ha! Touche. Match point. You win 😉 Feels good to hurl insults, eh? xoxo
I’m sorry things are hard right now. I know all of us wish we could swoop in and take some heaviness off of your shoulders. I hope you’ll be through to the other side soon with sunnier days.
I need to try these tempeh meatballs. They look like they’d be right up my alley.
Well seeing that fluffy clouds have just been sent my way, I am feeling A LOT better! Goodness woman, you are the most thoughtful person ever!!! To say thank you really doesn’t seem like enough but it will have to do for now so: THANK YOU FROM THE BOTTOM OF MY HEART!!!! xoxoxoxox
You’re so very welcome! xoxo
I can’t wait to give my teabag a home now 🙂
I’d hate to think of you having homeless teabags… That would be very tragic indeed. 😉
You are getting ready to start a whole new chapter in your life, and though the new chapter is going to totally rock, it’s normal for your body to mourn the end of the last chapter. You are absolutely right in just letting yourself feel these emotions, instead of bottling them up. It is when we let ourselves feel the “lows” that we can really appreciate the “highs.” None of this takes away from the fact that I want to give you a big hug right now!
Um, is it okay to have these meatball subs for breakfast, or maybe as my pre-run snack? They look absolutely devine and I want one now! 🙂
Beautiful. Positively beautiful. You just encapsulated it 100% for me: an end to the last chapter and the beginning to the new one. Love this so much, Kristy! I am so lucky to have met you…
And yes, these are the perfect breakfast food item!!
So happy to have met you as well, Cara! Sending you lots of warm, happy thoughts! Have a great week! xoxo
sweetie, I want to drive down there right now and HUG you!! I am so sorry these choices are painful at times. you are making choices that are making room for giddy bliss you cannot even imagine! the fact that you are strong enough to do something that hurts this much, knowing that it is the right thing, means you know what is truly important and you WILL find it… and the smile on your face will knock that meatball right out of your sandwich!
seriously, I wish I could be there for you, friend. to distract you while you feed me these sandwiches…
Giddy bliss? I think I just experienced giddy bliss over the term “giddy bliss”!! I LOVE that! I will be sitting here on the front porch, waiting for you and Basil to come pick me up 🙂 Then I would take you to the beach where I would feed you meatball subs until we could float in the water…
I’m sorry to hear there’s are so many ups and downs in your life right now – it seems like just the other day things were up, but I can understand all-to-well how easily they can drop away in luo of something bad. All I can say is, let yourself feel whatever you’re feeling. Identify it, understand it, even roll with it… then let it go. Breathe. Look towards the things that make you feel better (like cooking, and meatball subs!!).
Speaking of which… this looks amazing. I love that you made the bun, too – not just the meatballs. Hope it hit the spot and comforted you accordingly. 🙂
The ups and downs are all a part of life, right? It’s the beauty of birth–you can’t have it unless death in some way is also a part of it. This is what I find so fascinating about emotions now–that it is possible to hold joy in one hand while fully experiencing sorrow. They co-mingle, don’t they? Or least I understand this now… Thanks for the love, Willow! You always make me smile 🙂
It is just as important to feel the hurt, scared, lost, frustrated, desolate feelings as it is to feel the happy, shining, joyful ones. Light and Dark. Yin and Yang. There can not be one without the other. The happiness will not be true happiness if we don’t first give space to the hurt. It hurts and it’s hard and sometimes you are quite sure the pain will never go away, even though a rational side of you knows that it will. I won’t tell that it’s all going to be okay. I won’t tell you to look at the wonderful things happening in you life. You know. You already know. But I’ll sit here, next to you, hand in yours, and let you cry and rage for as long as you need to. I’ll bring eggs and toilet paper and we can do the worst together. Then, when you are ready, I’ll fart rainbows with you, too, about the beautiful days coming 😀
Okay, how can I seriously respond to anything you just said when you wrote “I’ll fart rainbows with you too”…BAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!! See? *This* is why I just love you!
where do you get your superfine brown rice(other authentic foods) flours? everytime i look online, they come with a craaaazy shipping price tag.
if i was in the next car and saw you cry, i’d knock on my car window, and when you looked over, i’d wave and smile.
as much as you may feel lost, i think very soon you will be very much found in your new life and job opportunities. the world is opening up and swallowing you whole! (in a good way!)
i want to make those rolls very soon. i don’t eat tempeh :/ but maybe i can substitute them with a mix of nuts and beans..or something.. 😉
The WholeFoods by my house has Authentic Foods superfine brown rice. It has been the only place that I have found it outside of the internet. Damn those high shipping prices! They really need to sell in a wider variety of places…
Thank you for the encouragement– I think you are 100% right and I am excited to see to what extent does the world eat me alive (in a good way) 🙂 I cannot wait and would like to fast forward the crummy parts at times. ha.
And yes, I actually subbed tempeh for red beans in my previous meatball recipe (attached with the “You might also like” on the bottom) so they would be just fine with nuts/beans medley 🙂