Recipe for Meatballs With A Heart

What is one of the best things you can do for the people you love?  Feed them good food that is good for them.  If you have loved ones in your family that are picky eaters and it’s really hard to get them to eat good foods you’re going to love these meatballs.

Recipe for Meatballs With A Heart

I add lots of different ingredients in many different combinations.  I’ll share one combination for you to try but don’t be afraid to come up with your own combination.  Now once you have cooked these meatballs you’re probably wondering how to serve them.  You can do just about anything with them.  Serve them as is with a side of your favorite vegetables.  You can use them on top of a pizza, in a soup, on top of pasta, in a stir fry or on a sandwich.  I’m sure you’ll share other ways with me.

You can also change the overall flavor of the meatballs by choosing which spice combinations you use or what sauce you serve them with.  The basic idea is to get some nutrient dense foods mixed into the meat so they are eaten.

Make sure you read all the way down to the notes section for lots of options.  These were shared on Slightly Indulgent TuesdaysGluten Free Wednesdays and Book of Yum Kale Roundup.

Meatballs With A Heart


1 pound of organic ground meat such as beef, chicken and pork or a meatloaf mixture of beef, pork and veal.

1 organic egg beaten

2 artichoke hearts- I use frozen and thawed them first

1 organic yellow beet rough chop

1 organic carrot rough chop

1 avocado

1/2 half organic yellow pepper rough chop

handful of organic spinach

1/2 cup organic kale rough chop

1/4 c almond flour- Honeyville Blanched Almond Meal Flour

1 tsp arrowroot

1 tsp Chia Seeds ground


Add the following to your food processor:  artichoke, beet, carrot, spinach and kale.  Give it a whiz until finely chopped.  Now add into the processor the avocado and yellow pepper until you have a nice creamy mixture.

Add in the egg, seasonings, almond flour, arrowroot, chia and ground beef and pulse until combined.  Try not to over process.

At this point you need to taste test by cooking up a little bit into a frying pan.   This way you can see if you like the amount of seasonings.  It’s always easier to add more seasonings.  If it needs more salt, pepper or whatever combo you have used.  If you need to adjust add in more seasonings and give it another quick whiz.  Taste test again.

Now you’re thinking is this really necessary?  YES! You should always taste what you are serving and once these puppies are cooked it’s hard to go back and add more spice unless your bathing them in BBQ sauce or something like that.

Grab your small scoop if you want to make the meatballs all the same size.  If not dig in with just your hands and roll meatballs.

Now you can fry them in a pan with some coconut oil turning only after they have had a chance to brown on one side.  Or  you can bake them in a 425 degree pre-heated oven for approximately 15-20 minutes.  Start checking to see if they are done by applying gentle pressure to the meatball.  If it has a nice spring then they are probably done.  You can always grab one out to see.


Spice combinations I use are from Penzeys Spices.  If you go to their website you can see what they add to their combos.  You can also order a catalog and products.  I don’t receive any money when you order but they should hire me as their PR gal.   I like their seasonings because they don’t add preservatives and junk I don’t want.  Some might have sugar but I use those sparingly.  Here are some I’ve used:  Cajun, Chili, Taco, Southwestern, Chicago Grill, Greek, Arizona Dreaming, Sate, Rogan Josh, Hot Curry, Tandoori, Vindaloo, Jerk, Northwoods, Pizza, Turkish, or Tuscan Sunset.  If you don’t have their combos find your favorite gluten free combos and go for it or just make up your own.

Sometimes I like to add in Raw Organic Vegan Coconut Aminos-8 fl. ozs. or if you eat soy, gluten-free soy sauce. San J Organic Gluten-free Tamar Soy Sauce makes travel packs too.  They basically taste the same and can be interchanged in recipes.

Another option I’ve done is to roll the meatballs into a mixture of chickpea flour, almond flour and salt to give them a different texture when I cook them in the frying pan.  It can hide interesting colors a little better too.

Other ideas for what to add to the mixture:  zucchini, squash, sweet potatoes, mushrooms, swiss chard, flax seed, walnuts, quinoa, pistachios, oats, pumpkin seeds or beans. You just need to play and see what you come up with.  Sometimes you might make so much to add in that you’ll need to use 2 pounds of ground meats.  You be the judge.

Nutrition Estimate using ground beef and no spices added

Servings: 10 (5 meatballs to a serving)

Amount per serving

Calories 141

  • Total Fat: 7.84g
  • Cholesterol: 50mg
  • Sodium: 55mg
  • Total Carbs: 5.06g
  • Dietary Fiber: 2.33g
  • Sugars: 1.08g
  • Protein: 11.15g

Recipe for Meatballs With A Heart

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This was shared on Real Food Wednesdays.

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16 Responses to Recipe for Meatballs With A Heart

  1. Katrina (GF Gidget) February 16, 2011 at 6:54 am #

    Okay! That's it… you are brilliant! I'm a love feeder, too, but this recipe is brilliant!

    • Diane Eblin February 16, 2011 at 11:24 am #

      Thank you Katrina. Let me know what combo you put into your recipe.

  2. AndreAnna February 16, 2011 at 8:39 am #

    I love tis idea of putting lots of veggies in a meatball – I often do this with my meatloafs!

    • Diane Eblin February 16, 2011 at 11:23 am #

      AndreAnna these can be like mini meatloafs. Have fun with them.

  3. Alisa Fleming February 16, 2011 at 11:29 am #

    Way to pack the veggies in Diane! They look tasty too.

    • Diane Eblin February 19, 2011 at 3:06 pm #

      Thank you Alisa. You never know what will show up in my meatballs or hamburgers.

  4. angie February 16, 2011 at 1:40 pm #

    love meatballs thanks so much for sharing this recipe I posted earlier this month about February being heart awareness month and now I find your recipe love it thanks

    • Diane Eblin February 19, 2011 at 3:10 pm #

      Thank you Angie.

  5. Wendy February 16, 2011 at 3:25 pm #

    I never ever would have come up with this combo. I get so boring with meatballs. Don't know why I will do lots of combos with fish or plain veggie and grain cakes. You are an inspiration.

    • Diane Eblin February 19, 2011 at 3:10 pm #

      Wendy I often think of complicated meals and then try to roll them into a meatball, hamburger or meatloaf. I think it's because I like shortcuts.

  6. Jenna February 17, 2011 at 2:20 pm #

    Great idea. I haven't added any veggies to our meatballs recently, but I used to do this. I haven't ever done meatballs in the foodprocessor either, so this was a very helpful post. I'll definitely be trying this out soon.

    • Diane Eblin February 19, 2011 at 3:14 pm #

      Jenna I hope you get back to playing. Let me know what combos you come up with.

  7. Bean February 22, 2011 at 6:32 pm #

    I really love how you've added so many different vegetables to your meatballs! My husband is making meatballs for dinner someday this weekend and I want to show him this recipe! Hopefully he'll make them or at least meet halfway.

    • Diane Eblin February 23, 2011 at 9:32 pm #

      Bean I can't wait to hear what you added to your meatballs!

  8. Jess @ Blog Schmog February 23, 2011 at 4:33 pm #

    Artichoke hearts and almond meal. I love your creativity. This is a great way to sneak in healthy foods for the meat lover. 🙂

    • Diane Eblin February 23, 2011 at 9:35 pm #

      Thank you Jess. I can be really good at being sneaky.