Turkey-Quinoa Meatballs

Get some whole grains into your diet by adding quinoa to meatballs!

Quinoa (pronounced keen-wa, if you don’t know) is an ancient grain from South America which has become quite the rage in the past few years. It’s delicious, it’s easy to make, it’s versatile, and it’s packed with nutrients. It’s got high levels of protein and fiber, as well as magnesium, folic acid, and vitamin E. It’s probably got other wondrous benefits that I can’t speak to, but frankly I just love the taste and texture.

I’m always looking for interesting ways to get more fiber into my diet, and yesterday I came up with this handy solution. I made these lovely turkey meatballs and mixed a bit of quinoa in. Texturally they were great and they tasted delicious! I made them for an Italian wedding soup but would be great with spaghetti in tomato sauce. Great just for snacking too, or maybe as a party appetizer.

You’ll need:

1/2 pound ground turkey, preferably dark meat
1/4 cup breadcrumbs
1/4 cup cooked red quinoa
2 heaping tablespoons grated manchego cheese (parm is fine too)
1 egg
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil (2 if you use white meat turkey)
1 small garlic clove, smashed and finely minced
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon minced fresh basil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper

More olive oil
1/2 cup chicken broth

Do This:

Combine turkey, breadcrumbs, quinoa, cheese, egg, 1 tablespoon olive oil, garlic, herbs, salt, and pepper in a mixing bowl. Using you hands mix gently but thoroughly. Refrigerate mix for 15 minutes.

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Heat a large oven-proof saute pan (preferably non-stick) over medium-high. Add olive oil to a depth of about a 1/4-inch. Working quickly, roll turkey mixture into balls with a a diameter of approximately 1 inch and slide into the oil. Using a spoon turn meatballs around and brown on all sides. When browned turn off the heat and add chicken broth. Place pan in the oven and bake for 8 minutes or until fully cooked.

Now you can use these in soup, or pasta, or however you wish! I hope you like ’em!

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