These Indian-spiced “No-Meat-Balls” are made using chickpeas as a meat substitute. Chickpeas are fantastic for several reasons, including having great flavour, but the one thing that makes them perfect for this recipe is that they’re substantial. When it comes to vegetarian/vegan dishes chickpeas are one of those foods that provides a denser component, making them almost “meat-like”.

The spice in these comes from garam masala and turmeric, but feel free to play around with whatever spices you enjoy. Personally, I find that garam masala provides a nice balance of spices, which work amazingly in this. If possible though, I would always try and keep the turmeric in these. Turmeric is one of life’s amazing foods, with it being a potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant because of the active ingredient Curcumin, so I tend to throw it in as much of my cooking as possible!

Feel free to let me know if you give this recipe a go by commenting, or tag me on Instagram using @theblwdad.


Indian ‘No-Meat-Balls’

  • Author: The BLW Dad
  • Prep Time: 10 Minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 Minutes
  • Total Time: 20 Minutes
  • Yield: 8 “No-Meat-Balls’ 1x


These Indian-spiced chickpea meatballs are soft, flavourful and wholesome, making them perfect for baby-led weaning. Be sure to make some of the raita dip to test your little one’s hand eye co-ordination… they will not be able to resist getting the dip dip!



130g Chickpeas
1 Egg
1-2 Slices of Bread (depending on the size of the egg)
1 Tsp Turmeric
1 Tsp Garam Masala
1/4 Cucumber
100g Full Fat Greek Yoghurt
Small Sprinkle of Fresh Mint, chopped


  1. To make the raita, grate the cucumber and squeeze some of the water out using a muslin cloth. Add this into a bowl with the yoghurt and chopped mint, giving it a thorough stir before covering and setting it to one side. 
  2. Drain the chickpeas and place in a food processor with all of the other remaining ingredients, but only using one piece of bread to start with. 
  3. Blitz until well combined. If the mixture seems too wet then add the extra slice of bread. When ready the mixture should feel slightly tacky, but easily mouldable into balls. 
  4. Once you have reached the desired consistency, take heaped tablespoons of the mixture and form into balls. 
  5. Pre-heat a non-stick frying pan with a small splash of oil of your choosing and drop your meatballs in.
  6. Turn the meatballs every 1-2 minutes, ensuring they are evenly browning.
  7. The meatballs should be evenly browned after around 10 minutes, at which point remove them and allow a few minutes for them to cool. 
  8. Serve with the raita and enjoy!


Suitable from 6 months plus. 

Storage: store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2/3 days, or freeze on the day and use within 3 months. 

The BLW Dad
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