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Nutrition Facts
Bean meatballs in a chipotle sauce
Amount Per Serving
Calories 476 Calories from Fat 288
% Daily Value*
Fat 32g49%
Saturated Fat 24g150%
Trans Fat 1g
Cholesterol 1mg0%
Sodium 862mg37%
Potassium 923mg26%
Carbohydrates 43g14%
Fiber 11g46%
Sugar 17g19%
Protein 10g20%
Vitamin A 3402IU68%
Vitamin C 29mg35%
Calcium 120mg12%
Iron 5mg28%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Bean meatballs in a chipotle sauce

Mexican comfort food
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Resting time1 hr
Total Time1 hr 35 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican
Servings: 4
Calories: 476kcal
Author: Jane Mason


  • Large frying pan
  • Food processor
  • Saucepan


For the balls:

  • 6 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 small onion finely chopped
  • a pinch of salt plus extra to season
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 150 g cooked pinto beans
  • 150 g cooked alubia or white beans
  • 25 g pumpkin seeds dry-roasted
  • 20 g dried breadcrumbs or 1 crumbled tostada
  • 1 tsp dried marjoram
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 3 tbsp tamarind paste
  • chopped coriander to garnish

For the sauce:

  • 3 - 6 canned chipotle adobadas
  • 6 tomatoes dry roasted
  • 2 garlic cloves dry-rosted then peeled
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds dry-roasted
  • 1 tbsp dried oregano or marjoram
  • 250 ml vegetable stock
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil


  • Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat. When hot, and add the onion and pinch of salt. Sauté the onion over a very low heat for a good 5 minutes, until translucent.
  • Add the garlic. Sauté for a further 1 to 2 minutes, still over a very low heat, to soften the garlic (take care not to burn it).
  • Add all the remaining ball ingredients except the coriander. Stir to combine, then gently fry for 3 to 4 minutes, until warm.
  • Scrape everything into a food processor (this works better than the blender) and blitz for a good 3 minutes, scraping down the sides from time to time if necessary, or until reduced to a fine texture.
  • Transfer the mixture to a bowl, cover and leave for at least one hour or overnight in the fridge to stiffen up.
  • To make the sauce, put all the ingredients – starting with 3 chillies – in a blender and blitz to a fine paste. Adjust the salt and taste to test your heat tolerance. This sauce is not supposed to be especially spicy, but you should be able to feel the heat and taste the smokiness of the chipotles. One at a time add further chillies, testing between each addition, until you’re happy with the heat. Press this mixture through a sieve into a saucepan and discard the contents of the sieve.
  • When you’re ready to eat, put the pan over a very low heat to gently warm through.
  • Make 12–16 equal-sized balls out of the ball mixture. Heat the remaining four tablespoons of oil in a frying pan set over a medium heat. Add the balls in batches, frying each batch for 10 minutes, rolling them around in the pan to keep them round, until cooked through. As each batch is done, pop the balls into the pan with the sauce and keep warm over a very low heat. 
  • Divide the balls between 4 serving plates and cover them with sauce. Scatter with chopped coriander and serve with a spicy salsa or sauce of your choice. The sesame and three chilli salsa is great with this.


Calories: 476kcal | Carbohydrates: 43g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 32g | Saturated Fat: 24g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 1mg | Sodium: 862mg | Potassium: 923mg | Fiber: 11g | Sugar: 17g | Vitamin A: 3402IU | Vitamin C: 29mg | Calcium: 120mg | Iron: 5mg