No need to stuff with empty, carb-rich bread crumbs. These Gluten Free Italian Meatballs are a real crowd pleaser.
Well, my dear niece, Nassim, is graduating from college this weekend. You may remember me writing about her in the post for Whiskey Tri Tip. The family dinner party will be held after the graduation and Nassim wanted all of her favorite foods for that night. From me, she requested my Gluten Free Italian Meatballs. How can I say no?
I am picky about meatballs, from their flavor and what’s hidden inside of them. I understand why bread crumbs and milk soaked bread are used for meatballs. This addition makes the meatballs fluffy. But I’m not into fluff. I’m into MEATballs!
But for those of us trying avoid carbs or minimize eating them, I don’t want them in my meatballs. I know what your next comment is. If you are eating low carb, why eat spaghetti with meatballs?! Well, my family eats the pasta, not me. Other options besides high carb pasta? Spaghetti squash, zucchini noodles or simply alone with peppers and mushrooms.
For gluten free eaters, you could mix in use gluten free bread crumbs or even cooked quinoa into your meatball mixture. For this recipe, you can add a half cup of cooked quinoa to the meatballs and you will get a fluffier, gluten-free meatball.
With or without quinoa, this is a great recipe that can be made in advance. You can make enough for an army, eat what you want and freeze the rest for later. And since I am always making this dish for a crowd, I bake the meatballs instead of frying them up. So much faster and easier.
These meatballs may be a little denser than the bread filled versions, but they are full of flavor and definitely more filling. And of course, no extra empty carbs.
- 1 lb ground beef
- 1 1/4 lb Italian turkey sausage links, spicy or sweet
- 2 large eggs
- 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
- 2 TBS dried parsley
- 1 TBS dried basil
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1/4 cup minced onion
- 4 cup marinara sauce, homemade or store-bought
- In a large bowl, combine ground beef, Italian turkey sausage links, eggs, Parmesan cheese, parsley, basil, garlic cloves, and onion. Just use your hands to mix everything together.
- When ingredients are evenly distributed and mixture is smooth, cover bowl and refrigerate mixture for at least an hour.
- Preheat oven to 400ºF
- Using the meat mixture, form meatballs and place on a baking sheet, leaving some space in between. For 1.5-inch size, you will make approximately 20 meatballs.
- When oven is hot, bake until meatballs are browned, about 20-25 minutes.
- While meatballs are cooking, heat up your marinara sauce.
- If cooking pasta, boil water for pasta and cook according to package directions.
- Serve meatballs with marinara sauce.
Serving Suggestions: Serve alone, with your choice of gluten-free pasta, with gluten-free bread for meatball subs or as a topping for a meatball pizza.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 410Total Fat: 22gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 11gCholesterol: 170mgSodium: 1233mgCarbohydrates: 12gFiber: 3gSugar: 7gProtein: 38g