Savory turkey meatballs that are seared to perfection and then simmered in a delicious marinara. Perfect for appetizers or a leaner protein to accompany your favorite pasta dish.
I’ve been indulging waaayyyy too much lately. It’s so easy to get off track and to go for the sinful treats instead of getting the healthy stuff in. Don’t worry, I have plenty of desserts planned after this post. I can always tell that I’m over doing it because instead of pinning desserts I’m starting to pin healthy, lighter meal options. I’m got some great inspiration in the works and will be posting some more savory meal ideas in the near future. But for now, these meatballs!
I don’t know about you but I love turkey meatballs. It’s a leaner protein choice than beef meatballs and you can make them taste amazing by adding various fresh herbs, spices, whatever you want! I’ve made these in the crock pot and in my cast iron skillet. I suggest the crock pot if you have a job to go to or errands to run. Going the skillet option doesn’t take up much time either. Since I simmer them in marinara, I typically go the Italian route and use lots of fresh basil, oregano, parsley, and some crushed red pepper.
Another thing I like about these meatballs is that they make great left overs. I scoop about 2 tablespoons of meat to get each meat ball, making about 10-12 meatballs per batch. We’ll serve a handful of them with dinner and then pack them up for the next couple of days. I know a lot of people say that turkey has a tendency to be dry, and this can be true. In this recipe I add 1 large egg into the turkey meat and make sure it’s thoroughly mixed in with the rest of the fresh herbs and breadcrumbs…problem solved. Adding an egg, just like you would with a meatloaf, really helps keep the turkey tender and moist. No dry, crumbly meatballs here.
- 1 pound ground turkey
- 1 large egg
- 1 cup Italian style bread crumbs (divided)
- Fresh Basil (chopped, divided)
- Fresh Parsley (chopped, divided)
- Dried Oregano
- Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
- 4 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic (minced)
- 1 - 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
- In a large mixing bowl combine turkey, egg and 1/2 cup of bread crumbs. Add in a few chopped basil leaves and chopped parsley. I used about 2 tablespoons of each but you can adjust this to your preference. Add in a few dashes of dried oregano and crushed red pepper flakes. Thoroughly mix the turkey, egg, breadcrumbs and herbs together by either using your hands on an electric/stand mixer. This should only take about a minute.
- Pour the remaining 1/2 cup of breadcrumbs on a plate or shallow bowl. Place a skillet on low-medium heat and allow it to heat up. Add olive oil to skillet and mince garlic cloves.
- Scoop ground turkey into meatballs, about 2 tablespoons per ball. Roll meatballs around in breadcrumbs until thoroughly covered. After meatballs are covered add to the skillet and brown the outsides.
- Once the meatballs are browned on the outside, use tongs to remove them from the skillet and place them on a plate. Add garlic into the pan and allow it to cook for about 1-2 minutes. Add in crushed tomatoes and additional chopped basil, parsley, oregano and crushed red pepper flakes. Stir sauce to get the garlic and herbs mixed, then add the turkey meatballs back into the sauce to finish cooking. Meatballs should take about 10-15 minutes to thoroughly cook through.
- Once meatballs are thoroughly cooked they are ready to serve!
- I did not use specific measurements for the herbs so you can easily adjust it to your preference.