Quinoa Neatballs

With Love from Frances


Prep Time
40 minutes

Cooking Time
35 minutes

Total Time
1 hour 15 minutes

A little effort


– olive oil
– 1 onion, finely chopped
– 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
– 1 large aubergine (300g), chopped into small blocks
– 50g green olives, pitted and finely chopped
– 100g quinoa, cooked
– 3 Tbs chia seeds
– 1 tsp dried basil leaves
– 1 tsp mixed dried herbs

Napoletana sauce:
– 2 tablespoons olive oil
– 1 brown onion, finely chopped
– 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
– 1 tablespoon tomato paste
– 2 x 400g whole peel tomatoes
– 1 tsp raw apple cider vinegar
– 1 tsp coconut sugar
– 2 bay leaves
– 3 sprigs of thyme


1. For the Neatballs: heat the olive in a large non-stick skillet, add the onion, garlic and aubergine. Saute for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
2. Remove from the heat and transfer into a food processor. Pulse for 30 seconds so that the mixture is combined but not completely smooth. then transfer into large bowl and mix in the remaining ingredients and season with salt and pepper.
3. Once well combined, roll the mixture into 30g balls then place into the fridge to chill and firm up for at least 20 minutes before frying.
4. For the Napoletana sauce: Heat the oil in a large non-stick skillet or pot. Add the onions and garlic and saute until the onions are soft and opaque.
5. Add the tomato paste, cook out for 2 minutes before adding the remaining ingredients, bring to the boil then reduce the heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes until the sauce has reduced by half. Taste and season with salt and pepper, then before serving add an handful of chopped herbs or a teaspoon of pesto (Adding the herbs/pesto is optional but it’s amazing so I suggest this 🙂 ).
6. Fry off the quinoa neatballs in a tbsp of olive oil on a medium heat for 10 minutes, turning until lightly browned on all sides.