4th meal,  appetizers + hors d'oeuvres,  party food + snacks,  vegan,  vegetarian

Sticky Sweet + Spicy Asian (v) Meatballs 

I am a cheater.

There. I said it.

I’m not gonna lie—I don’t really feel too bad about it.  In fact, I think you’ll want to be a cheater, too.

Here’s how it happened. We found out last minute that another couple was coming to our Super Bowl Puppy Bowl Party, and I wanted to make ABSOLUTELY sure I had enough food for everyone. One of my big hang-ups is running out of food. We are a very food-oriented family, so I have nightmares about such things.

I made an impromptu decision to throw some things together, and am actually proud of how good of a cheater I am!

By cheater I mean someone else has done almost all the work for me. Let me explain. I grabbed frozen Gardein ™ meatless meatballs and Trader Joe’s time-saving crushed garlic and crushed ginger, mixed some other condiments and spices together and WOW!

Heat the sauce to a simmer, then add the meatballs for 15-20 minutes and serve. How easy is that?

These “meatballs” have a hint of oregano and fennel because (I suppose) they were designed for Italian fare.  The teaspoon of sesame oil transforms that Mediterranean essence into the spicy-sweet flavor combination often found in the Far East. You may not even taste the essenza de Italiano. (Did I say that right?)

Not only do these easy and flavor-packed meatballs make a scrumptious appetizer, they can also stand in as a quick, delicious meal if served with warm rice and Asian-style slaw.

Seriously, you need to make these. The work has been done for you, and you’re going to get the credit for it. (Your secret is safe with me. I won’t tell a soul.)

Remember: my lips are sealed.

These sticky sweet + spicy meatless meatballs pair well with quality cold sake or—you guessed it—bubbles.



If you make these yummy meatballs as an app or as a meal, I’d love to hear about it!  Post a comment below and tag #nakedepicurean on Instagram so we can celebrate together!

  • ½ cup ketchup
  • ¼   cup chili garlic sauce
  • 1 teaspoon crushed ginger
  • 1 clove crushed garlic
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 12.7 ounce package Gardein Meatless Meatballs
  • scallions
  • sesame seeds
  • chopped peanuts
  • sliced hot peppers


1. Add all the ingredients except the meatballs in a large bowl and mix well to become your sauce.
2. Pour in a medium saucepan and heat to a simmer. 3. Add the meatballs. Heat them 15-20 minutes or until they are warmed through.
4. Transfer the meatballs onto a plate or a bowl; sprinkle with scallions, sesame seeds, chopped peanuts, or sliced hot peppers. Serve with party-picks.

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