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Sticky Ginger Rice Bowls with Pickled Veg and Mango

26 reviews / 4.9 average
This recipe is sponsored by ALDI

Let me tell you about something that I capital L-O-V-E love to eat.

It’s a sticky ginger rice bowl with hot white rice, sticky-sweet meatballs with a little bit of kick, crunchy quick pickled vegetables, and a fresh juicy ripe mango. Hello flavor, color, and texture. Hello happy, feel-good, full in my belly.

There’s Everything To Love About These Rice Bowls

In addition to being the thing I can’t stop eating lately, it’s also:

  • vegan (!!)
  • gingery and fresh
  • sticky and sweet
  • just a tiny bit spicy
  • the right amount of crispy-crunchy
  • juicy and fresh
  • and flexible to whatever protein or other vegetables you like.

Speaking of protein, let’s chat for a moment about ALDI Earth Grown Vegan Meatless Meatballs.

When we did the shrimp and cauli rice recipe a few weeks ago, it sparked a conversation on Instagram stories about what you all love to buy from ALDI. Most of the things that you all said were things I already knew and loved: oat milk, cheeses, crackers, tofu, ground beef, seafood, etc.

But one thing that so many of you RAVED about that I had never tried were these meatless meatballs. So obviously, it was an add-to-cart moment for me.

AND OBVIOUSLY, THEY WERE AMAZING! You did not steer me wrong. And you are now responsible for my new obsession. This is on you right now.

Ingredients for Sticky Ginger Rice Bowls

Another good news item to report on the ALDI front: they are now carrying fresh ginger. Shout it from the rooftops! Fresh ginger at ALDI!

So we made this whole thing, totally vegan, including a sticky-sweet ginger-forward sauce using fresh ginger, all from ALDI. Boom. Affordable, practical, delicious. Couldn’t love it more.

Sticky ginger rice bowls with pickled veg and mango in a bowl

Completely Meatless and Vegan

The direct quote from Bjork after he took his first bite: “This is seriously vegan?”

Some of you POY readers are vegan all the time, and some are occasionally trying to eat less meat, and some are… curious? experimenting? with meatless options. Either way – if you are the kind of person who is not only proving to yourself that meatless really can taste awesome, but also working to get a spouse, partner, or child on that train with you, these meatballs (and this sweet-and-spicy sticky sauce, and those pickled veg, and that fresh juicy mango, omg omg omg) might just be your ticket to success.

Sticky ginger rice bowls angle from the side

And if life seems a little SOS-y and you need to save this one for the weekend, should you then also buy the refrigerated tofu and vegetable dumplings from ALDI and pan-fry them and just straight dip them in a double batch of this sauce? Yes. You should. I can recommend.

Sticky ginger rice bowls with mango and pickled veg with a fork in a bowl

Sticky, delicious, meatless summery perfection.

I really love this recipe.

Close-up of meatless meatball

Sticky Ginger Rice Bowls: FAQs

This looks so good! Can this be made 100% vegan?

Totally! To make this 100% vegan, replace the honey with brown sugar, agave, or maple syrup.

How can I make my rice in the Instant Pot?

My standard rice method for the Instant Pot is 1 cup white rice combined with 1 1/4 cups water. Toss both in the Instant Pot on high pressure for 3 minutes. Allow for a natural pressure release (a.k.a. don’t let the steam out yet) for 15 minutes. Done!

Can I make these with regular meatballs?

Sure! This chicken meatballs recipe is SO GOOD. If you can’t find ground chicken, ground turkey will work. The Kirkwood Fresh Ground Turkey from ALDI is everything!

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Sticky Ginger Rice Bowls with Pickled Veg and Mango


  • Author: Lindsay
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x

Description

You’re going to fall in LOVE with these Sticky Ginger Rice Bowls! It’s a sweet-meets-spicy sauce situation, flavorful meatballs, pickled veg, and mango on top. The perfect (vegan) summery meal! 


Ingredients

Units Scale

Sauce:

  • 1/4 cup Fusia Soy Sauce
  • 23 tablespoons Specially Selected Raw Honey
  • 2 tablespoons vinegar
  • 1 clove garlic
  • one 1-inch knob of fresh ginger
  • 1 tablespoon sambal oelek or Fusia Sriracha (more or less to taste for some heat)

Rice Bowls and Extras:

  • 1 1/2 cups uncooked white or jasmine rice
  • 2 carrots, shredded
  • 1 large cucumber, halved and sliced
  • just a lil bit of rice vinegar, oil, salt, and sugar
  • one 16-ounce bag Earth Grown Vegan Meatless Meatballs
  • 1 large mango, peeled and cubed
  • cilantro for topping

Instructions

  1. Make the rice: Cook rice according to package directions.
  2. Blend the sauce: Blend all sauce ingredients in a blender or food processor until smooth.
  3. Make the pickled veg: Toss your veggies with enough vinegar and oil to just barely coat. Season with salt and sugar. Voila – it’s a very low-key pickled vegetable salad.
  4. Cook the meatballs: Heat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add meatballs and most of the sauce. Sauté for 5-8 minutes, shaking the pan to move them around and coat them in sticky sauce until they are cooked through. (You can also cover the pan with a lid to speed up the cook time for the meatballs.)
  5. Assemble: Serve meatballs over rice with a scoop of the pickled veggies, mango, and a handful of cilantro. Spoon a little bit of extra sauce over the top. SO GOOD.
  • Category: Bowl
  • Method: Sauté
  • Cuisine: Asian-Inspired

Keywords: rice bowl, bowl recipe, vegetarian bowl recipe

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Thank you to ALDI for sponsoring this post!

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61 Comments

  1. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Barbara OKeefe

    So happy to see a recipe for these meatballs . I have been using them for ages now. So delicious. I just dump the whole bag in homemade or jarred pasta sauce.

    It will be fun to try this recipe! More please!

    Enjoy your blog everyday.

    Barbara






      1. Pinch of Yum Logo
        Allison

        This was sooooo good! My favorite kind of dish and even better yet, it was vegetarian to start with.






  2. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Molly

    Can’t wait to try this!! Any advice for cooking brown rice in the instant pot? Do you use the same ratios as white rice? Love y’alls recipes!!






  3. Pinch of Yum Logo

    We were just talking about the Olive Garden petition for bringing in vegan meatballs into their restaurant yesterday and my parents looked… kind of interested? So, this will be the next thing I try with them. My husband and I are vegan and they are not, so I love introducing them to flavorful vegan options that could (hopefully) replace their meat options occassionally.

  4. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Noelle

    My whole family enjoys your recipes. I make a lot of them! My teen has gone vegan and I am gluten free. I love that you at least have options for these diets in some of your recipes. I hope to see even more plant based recipes in the future!






    1. Pinch of Yum Logo
      Krista @ Pinch of Yum

      So glad you’ve been enjoying the recipes! Thanks for the feedback!

  5. Pinch of Yum Logo

    I can’t thank you enough for your creativity with food and your gorgeous photos. I used to struggle as to what to make for dinner. I now plan out my shopping on Sunday, but wait for your Monday ideas. I now have a new “favorite meal” to make this week. We just at the chicken meatballs with harissa. My husband loved it. I have a terrible wheat allergy so I wanted to thank you for always offering subsitiutions. Thank you so much for this blog and the ideas!!!

  6. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Emily

    I love everything on this site! I literally went to Aldi for the first time ever today to get these meatballs and to make this. Easy fast and delicious. My kids love it.






  7. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Lisa Trentler

    Just made this tonight! So yummy!
    I sub’d cauli rice for lower carb
    (Omitted cuke and mango Bc I didn’t have
    🙁

    Changes I would make:
    1/2 the amount of ginger
    Double the sauce

    So quick and easy!
    Thanks Lindsey






  8. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Lara

    I was very intrigued by meatless meatballs but when I looked up the ingredients I got disappointed. Ingredients consist of water, textured soy protein, canola oil, soy flour, breadcrumbs, bleached wheat flour, soybean oil, turmeric, and paprika extractives, sea salt, pepper, garlic powder, parsley, wheat gluten, methylcellulose, and caramel coloring.. could this be made vegan with natural ingredients? Don’t feel like eating methylcellulose:) whatever that is. The recipe sounds delicious though!






    1. Pinch of Yum Logo
      Noelle

      It’s true that methylcellulose is a miracle of food science and is not an actual nutritious whole-food item (though it does serve other useful purposes in processed foods). But even though these fake meatballs are a processed food, they ARE still vegan. (We enjoy the Trader Joe’s meatless meatballs, which we call “freakballs.” I’m eager to try this Aldi brand now.)

    2. Pinch of Yum Logo
      Krista @ Pinch of Yum

      You could absolutely sub in your favorite vegan ground meat or meatballs!

  9. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Emily F

    This looks amazing! We are currently living out of the country and don’t have access to the vegetarian meatballs. Could you use tofu?

    1. Pinch of Yum Logo
      Rebecca

      Not sure where you live Emily, but I’m in the UK and love IKEA plant balls. Really tasty and good pricing (£2.95 for 500g).

      Can’t wait to try this 😍

  10. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Marliss

    This was 110% perfect. I used a 90 second microwave rice because I’m lazy and let the veggies pickle for a while before cooking the meatballs. We scarfed this down!






    1. Pinch of Yum Logo
      Krista @ Pinch of Yum

      So glad it was a hit, Marliss! Great idea using the microwaveable rice!

  11. Pinch of Yum Logo
    K Newman

    I made this last night and it was amazing! I added thinly sliced red onions to the cucumbers and cut the meatballs in fourths after cooking to get the delicious sticky sauce all over. Next time I’m doubling the sticky sauce. Sooooo yum! Loved the “meatballs”- my meat loving husband didn’t even know.
    You did it again!






  12. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Hilary

    I made this with the chicken meatballs linked in the recipe. So delicious! Will double the sauce next time because I needed more for drizzling. Even my particular kids loved the meal.






    1. Pinch of Yum Logo
      Krista @ Pinch of Yum

      With the pickled vegetables, it should be a complete meal! You could also roast, grill, or saute vegetables like peppers or zucchini to serve on the side.

  13. Pinch of Yum Logo

    I can’t wait to try this with some plant-based meatballs from IKEA! We don’t have the ALDI ones here in the UK, but the IKEA ones should do. Looks absolutely amazing!






  14. Pinch of Yum Logo
    jill schilling

    This was very delicious. I mean the meatballs, were xcrumptious! The sauce has just the right bite, acidity and sweetness. My son usually doesn’t like ginger, but he like these! Thank you,






  15. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Jessica

    I don’t normally eat vegan but this looked so good I had to try it, and I was not disappointed! (Even my solidly meat-and-potatoes husband commented on how good it was, and I just didn’t get around to letting him know the meatballs were vegan.) This meal was simple and fast enough for a weeknight, or a plain old hot summer night when I wanted to put about 17% effort into dinner. The combination of the umami sauce with the rice and pickled veggies was spot on. (I almost skipped the veggies. Please don’t.) Cilantro puts it over the top. I’m doubling this next time so I can have leftovers to eat at work.






    1. Pinch of Yum Logo
      Krista @ Pinch of Yum

      Thanks so much for the comment, Jessica! We’re so glad you enjoyed the dish!

  16. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Kirsten

    This was an easy and delicious dinner, even a hit with our 2.5year old! Made with the chicken meatballs suggested, otherwise exactly as written. Next time will be making extra sauce 🙂






  17. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Marilla

    This was the perfect dinner! The right amount of veggies, spice, sweetness, protein, everything I was craving!
    Made the full recipe so we enjoyed left overs for lunch the next day. Quick easy pickled veg was delish.






  18. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Julie

    We love Aldi but tend to buy the same things there – thank you for this recipe and a good reason to try these meatballs! They were wonderful. My daughter and I didn’t tell my teenage sons or my husband they were meatless – and everyone loved them! (Wed did double the recipe AND then doubled the sauce for our family of 5, which was perfect – just enough leftovers.) Thanks again.






  19. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Katy

    Made this tonight and it turned out wonderfully! I couldn’t find this brand of veg meatballs so we used regular frozen homestyle meatballs. The sauce is amaaaazing and my kids gobbled up these pickled veggies.






  20. Pinch of Yum Logo
    Lee

    I made this with grilled chicken and my husband literally groaned as he took his first bite. We both loved it; easy to make and a delightful combination of flavors.






  21. Pinch of Yum Logo

    Got here by recommendation and sure glad I did! Had all the ingredients on hand except the mango. Grabbed 6 at the store. 🙂 Whole family loved it and would like to have it again. Thanks for this one!






    1. Pinch of Yum Logo
      Krista @ Pinch of Yum

      We’re thrilled to hear this, Heather! Thanks for giving the recipe a try!