- Posted March 12, 2013 by
A healthier alternative to beef or pork meatballs, turkey meatballs make a light and delicious appetizer or meal. These also make gorgeous home cooking recipe and scrumptious party food or elegant hors d’oeuvres in cocktail parties. Ground turkey is combined with beaten eggs, breadcrumbs, and salt and pepper to make yummy meatballs. They are first sautéed in butter and oil to give them a nice brown color and then baked in the oven for 20 minutes to finish cooking. A sauce made of turkey or chicken broth, pineapple juice, sugar, red wine vinegar, soy sauce, and cornstarch is served with the turkey meatballs for dipping. This Chinese-inspired dish also makes a delicious meal topped over rice. Or serve with salad greens for a light meal that’s easy on the waistline.
When forming the meatballs, handle them gently and do not pack them too tight or they will be tough when cooked. Packing them too loosely, will cause them to fall apart easily or have a messy appearance. Ground turkey can be bought in the grocery or you can ask your butcher to ground the turkey meat for you so you are sure that it is freshly ground. Ground turkey is also available frozen, in one-pound packages and in bulk. You can also ground raw turkey breasts at home if you have a meat grinder. Ground turkey can consist of both white and dark meat. Turkey meat has 65 to 75 percent lass fat that ground beef making it one of the healthiest food choices.
When cooking with frozen ground turkey, allow it to defrost in the refrigerator overnight. Remove the ground turkey from the packaging and blot it dry with a paper towel. Removing excess surface from the turkey moisture will allow the meat to brown better when sautéed in butter and oil.
Makes about 35 meatballs
1 lb. ground turkey
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup dry bread crumbs
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. coarse ground black pepper
1 tbsp. butter
1 tsp. olive oil
1/2 cup chicken or turkey broth
1/2 cup pineapple juice, unsweetened
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/8 cup red wine vinegar
1 tsp. light soy sauce
1 tbsp. cornstarch
Heat oven to 350 degrees. In a bowl, mix turkey, egg, bread crumbs, salt and pepper. Form into walnut-sized balls.
Heat butter and oil in a skillet and sauté meatballs for 3-4 minutes, a few at a time. Remove from pan and place in a large casserole dish. Continue with the rest of the meatballs.
Place casserole dish in oven and bake, uncovered, for 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, combine all the sauce ingredients in a large saucepan, stirring until sugar and cornstarch are both dissolved. Bring mixture to a boil, stirring constantly, until sauce becomes clear. Cook for 1 minute.
Meatballs can be served with warm sauce, or you can make the sauce ahead of time and allow it to cool before serving with meatballs.