Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Turkey and Spinach Meatballs

Thought meatballs were unhealthy? Time-consuming to make? Think again. And meet the delicious turkey and spinach meatballs.

These meatballs are baked in the oven and take only about 20 minutes to make--start to finish. I suggest making a large batch while you're at it so that you can freeze the leftovers for another day. In the picture above, you'll see fresh meatballs atop homemade marinara sauce that was in my freezer. Bet you didn't know! Making extra when you cook is a key to serving up healthy meals in a cinch.

And yes, I did say healthy too. In this recipe, I use ground turkey breast instead of beef or sausage to transform meatballs into a meal you can enjoy on a regular basis. They're still packed with protein, but are now also very low in fat. Add some spinach and red onions and you've not only amped up the flavor but added nutrition too. Always a plus.

It's hard to beat a comforting meal that feels good for the soul. When you make some simple ingredient swaps, you can still enjoy your favorites while doing something good for your health too. I hope you enjoy it!

Turkey and Spinach Meatballs
Serves 4.

  • 1 pound ground turkey breast
  • 1/4 cup Italian-style breadcrumbs
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1/8 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1/4 red onion, diced
  • 2 cups baby spinach, torn
  • 1/8 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon parsley

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Heat oil in pan. Saute onions until translucent and beginning to brown. Add spinach and saute until wilted.
  3. Meanwhile, mix turkey, egg whites, breadcrumbs and seasonings in a medium bowl. Add onion and spinach mixture.
  4. Roll into 1-inch balls and place on parchment-lined baking sheet.
  5. Bake for 15 minutes until beginning to turn golden and opaque in the center.
  6. Serve with whole wheat pasta and marinara sauce. Follow this recipe, except omit the meat, for a simple homemade sauce.

Download the recipe here.

Nutrition Facts (per 4 meatballs or 1/4 recipe): Calories 183 | Total Fat 3g | Saturated Fat 1g | Cholesterol 68mg | Sodium 351 mg | Carbohydrate 7g | Fiber 1g | Protein 32g.