My daughters recently begged for homemade “meatballs, spaghetti squash, and pasta sauce.” After several days of procrastination, I finally broke down and bought everything I needed. It wasn’t that I didn’t want to make this dinner for them, it was the idea of taking an hour to cook meatballs that stilled my hand.
When the day arrived, and the meatballs had to be made, I hit the internet with determination looking for an easier way to make meatballs. After a few minutes, I found my answer: Baked Meatballs by Alton Brown.
These meatballs were simple to make, quick to bake, and so good! I think I have found my new go-to recipe.
Here it is; my notes are in italics:
adapted from Food Network: Alton Brown Baked Meatballs
1/2 lb ground pork —-]
1/2 lb ground lamb ] We used 1 1/2 lbs of ground turkey
1/2 lb ground round —-]
5 oz frozen spinach, thawed and drained thoroughly - optional
1/2 c finely grated Parmesan cheese - any Italian blend cheese – except mozzarella. – would work
1 whole egg
1 1/2 tsp dried basil
1 1/2 tsp dried parsley
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes - optional
1/2 cup gluten-free bread crumbs, divided into 1/4 cups* – gluten-free panko crumbs may also work as a substitute.
If you do not have bread crumbs on hand, take 4-5 slices of your favorite gluten-free bread and toast them in a 400* oven for 5-10 minutes, or until golden brown. Cool for a moment and crumble. Use as regular bread crumbs.
Preheat the oven to 400*
In a large mixing bowl, combine meat, spinach, cheese, egg, herbs and a 1/4 cup bread crumbs. Using your hands, or with a wooden spoon, mix until well incorporated. Use immediately or place in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours.
Place the remaining 1/4 cup of bread crumbs into a small bowl. Using a scall, weigh meatballs into 1/5 oz portions - I used my hands and eyeballed the amount. The meatball needs to be big enough to fit into a small muffin tin without being squished – approximately 1 to 1 1/2 tablespoons. Roll in bread crumbs and place the meatballs in individual, mini muffin tin. Bake for 20 minutes or until golden and cooked through.
Makes 24 meatballs.