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A 3 Ingredient Vegan and Gluten Free Snack, Party Food or Appetizer: Plantain and Cheese Balls

The Easiest Vegan Snack: Plantain and Cheese Balls

recipes Jul 09, 2023

Combining plantain and cheese in recipes is as common a combination in my home country of Venezuela as pb & j. There's something so delicious about the sweetness of a ripe plantain and the salty, melted goodness of cheese and I of course had to create a vegan recipe for you!


This easy vegan and gluten free appetizer or snack is perfect to pass around at a party and you can make so many in advance and simply re-heat them in the oven or air fryer before serving. 

They're a great kid friendly recipe, both in terms of taste and texture, but also in terms of giving them an easy task to help you out in the kitchen. It's so fun to shape these little balls and fill them with the cheese.

Although they make the perfect easy vegan snack or appetizer, they're also a great option for a unique side dish, and they're so easy to make.


If you've never cooked with plantains before, this is a very easy plant based recipe to get started with. You'll need ripe plantains for this (the green kind won't work), and the recipe will give you instructions for making these in the oven or the air fryer.

I hope you love them! Please enjoy the recipe, printable and video below!



12-14 balls | Prep time: 5 minutes | Cook time: 38 minutes (mostly unattended) | Gluten Free


  • 3 ripe yellow plantains (try getting some that have some black spots on the skin)
  • 12-14 cubes of vegan cheese that melts or 4 slices, piled up and sliced into squares
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Oil for brushing, or some spray oil

Only if needed: ground flaxseeds (only if your plantains are overly ripe and the mixture is too soft)


1. Peel the plantains and cut each of them into a few large pieces.

2. Add them to a pot of salted, boiling water and boil for 15 minutes.

3. Drain the plantains well from the liquid and place them in a bowl, season with salt and pepper, mash with a fork and taste, adjusting the seasoning as needed.

4. If the mixture feels too soft and like it won't hold its shape you can add a pinch of ground flaxseeds until the mixture is firmer (but this is rarely the case as plantains have a lot of structure).

5. Pre-heat the oven to 435ºF (225ºC) and move the oven rack one notch higher than the center of the oven. Line a shallow baking sheet with parchment paper and brush or spray some oil on it.

6. Add a bit of oil to the palm of your hands and take a bit of the mashed
plantain, place the cheese in the center and close the mashed plantain over the cheese and roll until you have a ball (roughly the size of a meatball).

7. Continue the process until you've used up all your mashed plantain and cheese and place the balls on your greased, parchment lined baking sheet.

8. Roast the plantain balls for 20-22 minutes or until golden and charred at the bottom (if you want more of a light golden color, flip them halfway through).

9. Let them cool slightly and enjoy!

Air fryer instructions (although you'll get less of the charred effect):

Air fry the balls at 400ºF (200ºC) for 15-20 minutes or until golden.

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