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Vegan Sausage Balls (Also Gluten-Free!)

By Thepickyeater @pickyeaterblog

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Let me introduce you to my hearty, satisfying gluten-free, vegan sausage balls! Made with simple plant-based ingredients, these are a twist on the traditional recipe without compromising that cheesy flavor. Whether serving as a gluten-free appetizer at your next party or preparing as a quick snack, they are sure to be gobbled up!

Traditional sausage balls consist of meaty sausage, dairy-based cheese, and biscuit dough. My version lightens things up a bit and transforms this comforting snack into a plant-based masterpiece.

It is the perfect recipe for meatless Monday, larger gatherings, or whenever you want a homemade appetizer that is fast and easy to make.

I am confident that my gluten-free vegan sausage balls will win over all your guests - even kids will have fun dipping them into their favorite sauces! They are a total crowd-pleaser!

Pair alongside some of my other vegetarian gluten-free recipes for a full spread of tasty food!

With their delicious savory flavor and meaty texture, my vegan sausage ball recipe holds its own amongst the traditional version. While there are no animal products used here, these balls still manage to taste like the real deal!

It's a foolproof recipe, easy enough for any skill level thanks to my step-by-step instructions and helpful tips. You only need 5 minutes of prep time and 30 minutes of cooking time, making this a great option even on those busy weeknights.

Since this recipe comes together so quickly, it has become a favorite of mine for parties and other events that require appetizers. Plus, since it is both vegan and gluten-free it can be enjoyed by nearly everyone.

I was able to keep these dairy-free sausage balls a little healthier by using ingredients like oat flour, almond flour, unsweetened dairy-free milk, and fresh parsley. These little touches make a big difference, giving that authentic "made with love" quality!

Plus, these gluten free vegetarian sausages store well. I love that I can prepare them the night before, store leftovers in the fridge for the work week, or freeze for a few months depending on my family's needs!

So, if you have been in search of an easy vegan sausage recipe that's also gluten free look no further! My recipe checks all the boxes and can even be customized to mix up the flavor profile (see my variations section later on in this post).

🥘 Ingredients

My vegan sausage balls recipe requires simple ingredients that come together to create the perfect balance of taste and texture! Here is what you will need:

Plant-Based Sausage: The traditional versions of this recipe use pork sausage or turkey sausage, but my vegan version uses a plant based meat alternative. You could make impossible sausage balls using the Impossible brand meat alternative, but I've found some healthier options that I prefer like Beyond Meat, Field Roast or Tofurky.

Flour: Many other recipes use gluten-free Bisquick mix, but I much prefer a blend of oat flour and almond flour.

Vegan Cheese: Just because this is a vegan recipe doesn't mean these are sausage balls without cheese! I used both dairy-free cheddar cheese and vegan parmesan, but you can use whatever you prefer! Vegan sharp cheddar cheese also tastes great.

Dairy Free Milk: Add in dairy-free milk of your choice if you plan to use precooked sausage! Learn more on this in my expert tips section.

Apple Cider Vinegar: This will add to the overall flavor of the batter so I do not recommend skipping it. However, if you need to you can swap it for a mild vinegar, just note that the taste may change.

Parsley: This fresh herb adds a nice pop of flavor, but can be left out as well. Or, try other herbs such as sage, thyme, or cilantro! See some of my other favorites in the variation section below.

Sea Salt & Baking Powder: Last but not least, I add in some sea salt and baking powder to improve the overall taste and texture of my vegetarian sausage balls.

🔪 How To Make Vegan Sausage Balls

My no egg sausage balls are so easy to make with minimal effort, which is the best kind of recipe if you ask me! Here are the steps to take:

Preheat Oven & Mix Ingredients: First, I start by preheating the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit / 175 degrees Celsius. Then, I grab my large mixing bowl, adding all of my ingredients and mixing until combined.

Vegan Sausage Balls (Also Gluten-Free!)

Form Balls: Now, I shape the sausage mixture into balls and place them, spread out, on a parchment-lined baking sheet. You should get about 20 balls that are about 1 ½ inches in diameter.

Vegan Sausage Balls (Also Gluten-Free!)

Bake & Serve: Finally, I bake the balls for 30-35 minutes until browning. Serve with dips of choice or as part of a healthy meal!

Vegan Sausage Balls (Also Gluten-Free!)

My #1 Secret Tip for this recipe is to use freshly shredded dairy-free cheese for best results.

If you are looking for the very best taste and texture, do not use pre-shredded cheese for these egg free, vegan sausage balls! The ingredients used to keep the cheese shreds from clumping can dry out the balls and mess with the overall consistency.

While it adds a couple additional minutes, I highly recommend using a block of your favorite vegan cheese and shredding it yourself!

Other Tips To Keep In Mind:
  • Consistency Matters: You want the dough to be wet so you can shape it easily, but not so wet that it won't hold together.
  • Sausage Type: All sausage types should work for this recipe. I tried making these with precooked store bought, precooked homemade vegan sausage, and store bought uncooked meat alternative. All turned out great!
  • Adjust Liquid As Needed: If using uncooked sausage, you will probably not need the milk. Precooked sausage does not release as much liquid so I've found it needs the extra liquid to make up for it.
  • Add Salt To Taste: The amount of salt needed will depend on the sausage you use. Precooked ready sausage tends to have plenty of salt on its own.
  • Easier Clean Up: I recommend lining the baking sheet with parchment paper. This not only helps with the texture but makes cleanup easier!
  • Adjust The Recipe: My recipe makes 20 balls, with a serving size of 4 balls. You can double or triple this recipe if you need more vegan gluten free sausage balls for a larger party or event.

📖 Variations

Make this sausage ball recipe your own by experimenting with other flavors, adding in extra herbs or spices, or using breakfast sausage for a brunch version! Here are my favorite ideas:

More Herbs: This recipe keeps things simple with fresh chopped parsley and salt, but I love playing around with other herbs to change up the flavor! For an Italian style sausage ball, I like to use fresh chopped basil. If I plan to add these to Mexican cuisine, cilantro makes a great addition. For a comforting, wholesome sausage ball I like to use a combination of rosemary, chives, and thyme!

Add Some Spice: When I am craving a little heat I add a dash of cayenne pepper or red pepper flakes to the mix! You can also serve them with a spicy hot sauce or vegan jalapeno cheddar cheese sauce.

More Mix-Ins: These plant-based sausage balls incorporate vegan cheese and plant based sausage as the base, but you can always add in some finely chopped veggies. I've used red bell pepper, red onion, and mushrooms. I recommend that you refrain from adding in too much as this could change the composition of the balls and cause them to crumble.

🍽 Serving Suggestions

Whether I'm making an appetizer spread for a party or serving these sausage balls as part of a main meal, they are always a hit! Here are some of my top recommendations for serving:

With Dips: For a simple and easy snack, I love pairing these gluten free sausage balls with a yummy dip! Give any of these sauces a try for a variety of flavors:

More Appetizers: Make a snack tray or appetizer spread for a party or just for fun with the family! My personal favorite additions? These air fryer mozzarella sticks, mushroom toast, and vegan quinoa patties!

With Main Meal: These plant-based sausage balls can add a nice boost of protein and flavor to many meals! My family loves adding these on top of whole wheat pasta or crumbled over a vegetarian fajita bowl.

🫙 Storage Instructions

Prepare Ahead: When I need to save some time on the day of serving these, I will prep batches of these sausage cheese balls ahead of time by forming the dough into balls, covering, and refrigerating until I am ready to bake. I do this up to one day in advance, making sure they're sealed well before storing so they don't dry out.

Fridge: Once cooled, I store baked gluten free sausage balls in an airtight container in the refrigerator. They will stay good for up to 3-5 days.

Freezer: For longer storage, I seal the balls in an airtight freezer safe container and freeze for up to 3 months.

Reheating: I've found that these sausage balls are best when reheated in the oven or air fryer, but for a quicker method I'll just pop them in the microwave until warmed through.

❓Recipe FAQs

Why did my sausage balls go flat?

Sausage balls can flatten out for a couple of reasons. For starters, I have noticed that when using pre-shredded cheese the coating on the cheese can make the balls flat. Additionally, I've found that using too much cheese can cause them to melt down too much and not hold their shape. Measure out ingredients carefully and as mentioned in my expert tips, be sure to use freshly grated cheese for the very best results! It's worth it!

Do vegan sausage balls need to be refrigerated?

Yes, the balls should be refrigerated if not consumed within 2 hours. If you are serving these at a party that will be going on for a few hours, be sure to put them away after that 2 hour mark. Alternatively, you can also bring them out a little bit later once everyone has arrived!

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📋 Recipe Card

Vegan Sausage Balls (Also Gluten-Free!)

My gluten free vegan sausage balls are a twist on the traditional recipe but equally as amazing! Uses simple ingredients to get that meaty, cheesy, savory flavor.

  • 2 cups crumbled plant based sausage , precooked or store bought (see note)
  • 1½ cups oat flour
  • 2 cups shredded dairy free cheddar cheese , can also use some parmesan in place of the cheddar
  • ½ cup fine grained almond flour
  • ¼ cup , optional chopped fresh parsley
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon , if needed (see note) sea salt
  • ½ - ¾ cup dairy free milk , if using a precooked sausage (see note)
  • 2 teaspoons , if using a precooked sausage (see note) apple cider vinegar

Shop Ingredients on Jupiter

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F / 175 C

  • Put everything into a large mixing bowl and mix until combined.

  • Shape into balls, you should get about 20 balls that are about 1 ½ inches in diameter, and place on a parchment lined baking sheet.

  • Bake for 30-35 minutes until browning.

  • Serve with dips of choice!

  • I did a combo of both cheeses. You can use any type of cheese you prefer. I suggest not using pre-shredded cheese because the ingredients they use to keep it from clumping can dry these out.
  • If you buy uncooked sausage, you will probably not need the milk. However if you use precooked sausage, liquid will not be released so you need the extra liquid. You want the mixture to be wet so you can shape it easily, but you don't want it to be overly wet.
  • The salt will depend on the sausage you use. Precooked ready sausage tends to have plenty of salt on it's own.
  • This makes 20 balls, serving size is 4.
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