Comfort food has gone healthy and the results are incredibly delicious. Flavor is not a sacrifice we're willing to make, and these Baked Turkey Meatballs are the proof. They're satisfying and filling, tender and juicy, and oh-so-savory thanks to garlic, onion, and Parmesan cheese.
The prep only takes 15 minutes and you will love how versatile this meatball recipe is. Turkey is a great, lean alternative to ground beef, but you can easily substitute whatever ground meat you have on hand to work in this recipe. Ground beef or ground chicken works wonderfully in the place of turkey as well.
Serve these meatballs with marinara sauce over spaghetti or zucchini noodles, or over mashed potatoes with gravy and green beans on the side! However you prefer to serve them, you will find this to be a super handy, quick-fix protein option to have on hand! And if you love the leaner protein recipes, try our ground turkey tacos next!
HOW TO MAKE TURKEY MEATBALLS
To kick off this easy Turkey Meatball recipe, you first want to preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and ready 2 rimmed baking sheets with nonstick aluminum foil (if you have 2, that is). The reason we call for 2 baking sheets is so that your turkey meatballs are not crammed together on one baking sheet. You want hot oven air to be able to circulate all the way around the meatballs so they can evenly cook and brown up beautifully!
If you only have 1 baking sheet, and it is not large enough to allow for space in between each meatball, no worries. You can most definitely still make this recipe! Just bake your Ground Turkey Meatballs in batches, and make sure you refrigerate any raw meatballs waiting on their turn in the oven!
Once your oven is heated and your pans are ready, mix up Italian bread crumbs, fresh chopped parsley, and milk in a large bowl. If you only have regular breadcrumbs, you can certainly use them in this recipe. And as far as the milk goes, you can use 2% or whole milk. This milk-breadcrumb mixture is what helps to keep your Turkey Meatballs tender and moist!
You'll also add half of a yellow onion that has been finely minced, minced garlic, and grated Parmesan cheese. All of these ingredients add a ton of flavor to the meatballs!
The last of the ingredients going into your breadcrumb mixture is one large egg (which serves as the binder), salt, and pepper. If you like your meatballs spicy, feel free to add red pepper flakes as well! Give all of these ingredients a really good mix and then you'll add in 2 pounds of lean ground turkey.
Mixing up Turkey Meatballs is about as simple as it gets when it comes to cooking! The hard part of working with ground turkey is the fact that it is somewhat sticky. But, not to worry! We have 2 great tips that'll help make easy work out of scooping and rolling Turkey Meatballs.
The first is to use a cookie scoop! Cookie scoops not only help to get the turkey out of the bowl and into your hands with literally no mess, but they also create perfect, evenly-sized meatballs all the way across the pan! If your meatballs are the same size, they are all going to cook in the same amount of time. Yes, please! The best cookie scoop for this task is one that holds right about 2 tablespoons.
So that is our best tip for scooping the turkey mixture; now here's our best tip for rolling your meatballs. One way to work around sticky ground turkey is to slightly dampen your hands before rolling the meatballs. You don't want your hands dripping wet. Just damp enough so that they are moistened by water.
Scoop about 2 tablespoons of the meatball mixture and roll them with damp hands. Place the meatballs on the prepared baking sheets, spacing each meatball right about 1 inch apart. Then, lightly spritz the meatballs' top and sides with cooking spray. You can use an avocado, canola, or olive oil cooking spray.
Adding oil to the top and sides of the meatballs will help them brown up beautifully in the oven! Transfer the meatballs to the preheated oven and bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the internal temperature of the meatballs registers 165 degrees Fahrenheit. This is best determined by using an instant-read thermometer.
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Easy, healthy, high-protein, quick-fix, the list goes on! These Turkey Meatballs are about to become your new favorite recipe!
- ⅓ cup Italian breadcrumbs
- ⅓ cup 2 % or whole milk
- ½ yellow onion minced
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 2 tablespoons freshly minced parsley
- ¼ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese optional
- 1 large egg slightly beaten
- 1 ¼ teaspoons Kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 2 pounds ground turkey
- Cooking spray (avocado, canola, or olive oil)
Preheat the oven to 400° and have ready 2 rimmed baking sheets lined with nonstick aluminum foil.
In a medium-sized mixing bowl, combine bread crumbs and milk. Stir until the crumbs have absorbed the milk. Add the minced onion, garlic, parsley, Parmesan, egg, Kosher salt, and black pepper. Stir once more to thoroughly combine. Add the ground turkey and gently mix to combine.
With damp hands, roll about 2 tablespoons of the meatball mixture into a ball and place it on the baking sheet, placing each meatball at least 1" apart from the others. Lightly spritz the meatballs with cooking oil.
Bake for 25-30 minutes, until adequately cooked through. Allow to cool slightly, serve, and enjoy!