Meatless Monday’s – zucchini ‘meatballs’ with ricotta

This recipe is from Diethood and the original link can be found here: Ricotta Zucchini “Meatballs”

This is one of my favorite “Meatless Monday” recipes I have tried so far!

What I love about it: I found it very savory and filling. After making I instantly thought we could use the leftovers for vegetarian meatball subs later in the week!

Tips/Advice: Zucchini is VERY moist. The more moisture you remove, the better they will hold their shape. You will see in my picture below that mine slumped a little… we did not have a cheese cloth to remove enough of the water. But, they still tasted great! Next time around I will be sure to find a better way to let them dry. I suspect if the zucchini spent some time flattened on the counter on a towel air drying that would have helped.


  • 3 zucchini, grated
  • 1 large yellow onion, grated
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • ½-cup fat free ricotta cheese
  • ¼-cup freshly grated parmesan, plus more for garnish
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 teaspoon seasoned salt
  • fresh ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon Italian Seasoning
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh basil, plus more for garnish
  • Vegetable oil for frying
  • 1 jar of marinara or tomato sauce. I only suggest this because I have yet to blog my personal tomato sauce recipe 🙂



  • Grate the zucchini and onions on the large holes of a box grater or in a food processor.
  • Place in a large bowl and stir in the garlic; mix until everything is well combined.
  • Transfer zucchini mixture to a large sheet of paper towel or a cheesecloth; wrap up the zucchini mixture and twist tightly into a ball.
  • Squeeze the ball over the sink or a bowl to catch all the water.
  • Unravel the cheesecloth and set the zucchini mixture aside.
  • In a mixing bowl, combine ricotta cheese, parmesan, egg, panko crumbs, seasoned salt, black pepper, Italian Seasoning, and basil; stir until everything is well combined.
  • Add zucchini mixture to the ricotta mixture and continue to mix until thoroughly incorporated.
  • Shape the mixture into 12 golf-ball sized meatballs.
  • Preheat broiler.
  • Add an inch of oil to a cast iron skillet and heat over medium-high heat.
  • Working in batches, add the “meatballs” to the skillet and cook for 5 minutes, turning occasionally, until browned on all sides.
  • Remove to a paper towel lined plate.
  • Once all the meatballs are done, add them back to the skillet and pour tomato sauce over them.
  • Broil for 4 to 5 minutes, or until sauce is warm and bubbly and meatballs are completely cooked through.
  • Remove from oven and serve over prepared whole wheat pasta.
  • Garnish with freshly grated parmesan and chopped fresh basil.
  • Serve.


Hope you enjoy! Thanks Diethood for the great recipe!!!

As I mentioned mine had a little extra moisture and slumped just a bit. Removing as much water from the zucchini as possible is the key!
The finished product… I guess you can’t see them so well under all that sauce and cheese :)~


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