Juicy Turkey Meatballs

Hey y’all!

Today I’m sharing a delicious recipe for juicy meatballs. Any meatball fans out there?? Me too! I like making meatballs because not only are they delicious, I can make so many different meals with them. These meatballs have 29 g of protein per serving (4 meatballs)and it’s easy to make a balanced meal using them. I like to have mine over pasta (of course) with a side of leafy greens or as sliders. I also crumble them up over a flatbread topped with spinach, tomatoes and a little parmesan cheese. There are so many ways to eat a good meatball.

Zucchini is in the mixture to add moisture without adding fat since ground turkey can be dry. I also buy the 85% lean ground turkey instead of the 99% lean. Like I said, no dry food around here! This is also important since I like to have leftovers to make nutritious eating feasible. Reheating can dry things out, so the more moisture to begin with, the better.

The good in this? Turkey is a great option when looking for lean protein. The term “lean” refers to the fat content in a particular item. Limiting intake of saturated fat is shown to improve cardiovascular health. This meal can also be good for increasing iron. Turkey is a source of heme-iron which is better absorbed by the body. Paired with fortified pasta, spinach and an orange (Vitamin C increases iron absorption), you’re all set!

Let me know what you think!

Turkey Meatballs

  • Servings: 4-5 (4 meatballs)
  • Difficulty: medium
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Ingredients:

1 small zucchini, shredded (about 1 cup after being drained)

1 lb ground turkey (85% lean)

1/2 cup old fashioned oats

2 eggs

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 teaspoon onion powder

1/2 Tablespoon fresh rosemary

2 teaspoons dried basil

1/2 teaspoon salt

Directions:

Using a box grater, shred zucchini. In a clean dish towel or paper towel, squeeze excess liquid from zucchini. Add zucchini to bowl with ground turkey, oats, eggs, garlic, onion powder, rosemary, basil and salt. Combine mixture together with hands (use gloves if desired). Form 1 tablespoon sized balls. Recipe should make about 18 meatballs. At this point, meatballs can be frozen if desired.

Cooking Options: 

  • Place meatballs on lined baking sheet and bake at 400°F for 30 minutes or until meatballs reach 165°F.
  • In large skillet, add 1 jar of pasta sauce plus 1/2 cup of water. Place meatballs in pan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes or until meatballs reach 165°F.

Serve warm over your favorite pasta with a green side or as sliders.

Roasted Sweet Potato Taco Bowl

Taco bowls are essential quick dinner meals that translate into super delicious leftover lunches. This taco bowl has roasted sweet potatoes as the base in place of standard rice and so much good flavor. My favorite toppings for taco bowls is fresh cilantro, Greek yogurt and sometimes cheese. These bowls are vegan as is but can easily be adapted to include lean animal protein such as chicken or ground turkey! When I meal prepped, I crushed a few Organic Blue Corn Tortilla chips on top of each bowl for some texture .

The good in this? Let’s talk beans! Beans are a great source of fiber and iron. Soluble fiber not only helps with satiety but also can help lower cholesterol levels. Iron is essential for red blood cell production and important for pregnant and breastfeeding women as well as children due to risk of deficiency.

Continuing with the National Nutrition Month theme…

Food groups:

Grains: tortilla chips

Protein: beans

Fruit: lime

Vegetable: sweet potato, tomatoes, kale

Dairy: Greek yogurt, cheese

Roasted Sweet Potato Taco Bowl

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients:

1 lb diced sweet potatoes

1 tablespoon canola oil

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1/2 teaspoon onion powder

2 cups chopped kale

1 14.5 ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed

1 14.5 ounce can pinto beans, drained and rinsed

1 14.5 ounce can fire roasted diced tomatoes

1 tsp smoked paprika

1 tsp chili powder

Optional additional toppings (lime, cilantro, green onions, cheese, tortilla chips, Greek yogurt)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. In large bowl, combine olive oil, sweet potatoes, cumin, salt, garlic powder and onion powder. Toss to coat potatoes evenly. Spread mixture on baking sheet and roast for 30 minutes, stirring after 20 minutes.

In medium non-stick skillet, sauté kale about 3-5 minutes. Add beans, tomatoes and remaining spices and simmer for another 5-7 minutes until heated through.

Build taco bowl with 3/4 cup of sweet potatoes, 1 cup of bean mixture and desired toppings.

Vegetarian “Chorizo”, Swiss Chard and Mango Stuffed Peppers

Hey guys and gals!

March is National Nutrition Month (NNM)! Woohoo!  All month long, I’ll be focusing on recipes that incorporate all 5 food groups! The theme is general this year so be sure to subscribe to see the fun, tasty and nutritious food I create!

A couple of weeks ago, I meal prepped for my parents which meant I didn’t cook for myself much. But I completely enjoyed dining out and trying a few new Memphis spots! Meal prepping for them left me with some meatless chorizo crumbles that I don’t typically eat so I was excited to create some magic with them.

I wanted to encourage my parents to eat more meatless meals, but they’re not at that point yet. I decided to make some chili with meatless crumbles to start them off. They loved it so it was a success!

Now, let’s get to this recipe. Stuffed peppers are very common and are usually made with a Mexican style theme. (although you can literally stuff a pepper with ANYTHING!) These are vegetarian “Chorizo”, Swiss Chard and Mango stuffed peppers. They also have quinoa for even more protein. These are undoubtedly my favorite way to eat a stuffed pepper. If you are not feeling the meatless chorizo crumbles, feel free to use ground beef or ground turkey instead.

The good in this? Let’s talk Vitamin C. Vitamin C is an antioxidant that is great for boosting the immune system. The peppers, Swiss chard and mangoes are all good sources of Vitamin C! This is a great way to add variety to your meals this National Nutrition Month.

We always tend to think about oranges when referencing Vitamin C, but here is a meal packed with Vitamin C with no oranges in sight!

Food Groups:

Grains: Quinoa

Protein: Chorizo Crumbles

Fruit: Mango

Vegetables: Swiss Chard

Dairy: Monterrey Jack Cheese

Vegetarian Chorizo, Swiss Chard and Mango Stuffed Peppers

  • Servings: 3
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients: 

3 bell peppers, any color *note, yellow bell peppers have a higher Vitamin C content

Cooking spray

2 Tablespoons Olive Oil

1 cup Vegetarian Chorizo Crumbles

1 bunch Swiss Chard, chopped

1/2 tsp salt

1 cup cooked Red Quinoa

1 fresh mango, peeled and diced

3/4 cup Monterrey Jack Cheese

Directions: 

Preheat oven to 400°F. Slice bell peppers in half vertically and remove core and seeds. Place peppers on baking sheet, spray with cooking spray and roast for 10 minutes. While peppers are in the oven, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in large skillet. Add chorizo, Swiss Chard and salt and sauté for 5 minutes. remove from heat and stir in cooked quinoa and chopped mango. Remove peppers from oven and divide chorizo mixture evenly amongst the 6 pepper halves. Top each pepper with about 1 Tablespoon of cheese. Bake for an additional 20-25 minutes. Serve warm. Serving size is 2 pepper halves.