Four Ways to Build a Healthy Meatball
Meatballs are a party favorite and great in main dishes, but the calories add up fast. Cut the fat and calories and add a little fiber with a can of beans. Follow this formula to enjoy six meatballs for around 200 calories and 7 grams of fat. Plus, there are four different sauces to add to make delicious cocktail meatballs. Have fun making your favorite!
Adapted from Allrecipes.com 2020
Author: Michelle Hanson
Michelle Hanson, MA, RD, LD is Fresh & Natural Food’s Registered Dietitian. She received a Bachelor of Science degree in Nutrition and Clinical Dietetics with a minor in Community Health from the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities. She is a registered dietitian and current member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Michelle has been a nutrition consultant for numerous years as well as a nutrition research director at the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities.
Michelle is passionate about food and nutrition and believes in helping people find simple, realistic ways to make healthy eating a part of their everyday lifestyle.
If you are interested in meeting Michelle or have questions for her, you can email her at: firstname.lastname@example.org. She will look forward to meeting you!
To Make the Base Meatballs:
- Pulse beans, garlic, egg white, salt-free seasoning, salt, and pepper in a food processor until smooth.
- Mix together bean mixture, ground meat, and bread crumbs in a large bowl. Do not overmix.
- Shape into 1-inch meatballs and put on a slightly greased rimmed baking sheet.
- Bake in a 400 F degree oven 12 to 14 minutes, or until a thermometer inserted in centers registers 165F degrees.
- Serve with a desired sauce and garnish or use in a main dish.
Four Meatball/Sauce Variations (pictured from left to right)
- For the base meatball, use: Great Northern Beans, Italian Seasoning, and Ground Beef in addition to the other ingredients listed. Top with: Marinara Sauce and Grated Parmesan.
- For the base meatball, use: Cannellini Beans, Thai Seasoning, and Ground Pork in addition to the other ingredients listed. Top with: Peanut Sauce, Chopped Peanuts and Crushed Red Pepper.
- For the base meatball, use: Chickpeas, Greek Seasoning, and Ground Turkey in addition to the other ingredients listed. Top with: Tzatziki Sauce and Fresh Dill.
- For the base meatball, use: Black Beans, Fajita Seasoning, and Ground Beef in addition to the other ingredients listed. Top with: Salsa Verde and Green Onion.