Baked Turkey Pesto Meatballs Recipe

Recipe Classifications

Cuisine:

American

Meal:

Lunch, Dinner

Diet:

Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Soy-Free

Rainbow:

Brown / White, Green

Freezes well:

Yes

Prep Time  (total time):

Under 30 Minutes  (Under 1 Hour)

Baked Turkey Pesto Meatballs Recipe

Turkey is the standout, show-stopper of Thanksgiving Day. This holiday staple is a ubiquitous reminder of the warmth and joy the season brings. Thus, this Baked Turkey Pesto Meatballs Recipe can be prepared for the Thanksgiving celebration, from the holiday leftovers, or just whip it up any time of the year. Adding to this holiday feel is a touch of comfort food, homey-ness that meatballs bring. Minced turkey could be made into yummy, healthier meatballs in place of its beef or pork counterpart. Minced chicken breast is a good option too. 

Baked Turkey Pesto Meatballs Recipe

Oh, the fabulous pesto sauce levels up these meatballs, exponentially! Another good news is that this recipe is simple and can be made after a long day. You just need a food processor or a blender to transform the greens into a fresh, rich paste, or pesto. There’s no wonder why there are many good reasons pesto gets all the hype.

The pesto sauce made mainly from the basil herb and pine nuts, mixed with olive oil, make this dish a nutritional powerhouse! Moreover, this is a gluten-free and low-fat recipe for weight loss or detox diet! What a guilt-free holiday (or, again, just any day) treat!

baked turkey pesto meatballs

Plus, the pesto sauce can be kept in the freezer for 6 months! You can scoop out a few tablespoons any time you crave for something bright, herby, and savory. It’s so versatile that you can simply mix it with other recipes without thinking twice. Your creativity is the only limit!

Baked Turkey Pesto Meatballs Recipe

Now, get your tools and ingredients ready and get amazed at the ease of putting together this healthy and delectable dish! Happy eating!

Baked Turkey Pesto Meatballs

This gluten-free and low-fat recipe is filled with protein, fiber, and vitamins that will help you to shed some fat and weight. It’s perfect to be consumed either on a weight loss or a detox diet. Plus, it also makes the best guilt-free holiday treat!
Course Main Course
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Resting Time 5 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 8 servings
Calories 236kcal

Equipment

  • Food Processor

Ingredients

For the Pesto Sauce:

  • 2 cups fresh basil leaves packed
  • 1/3 cup pine nuts
  • 3 pieces garlic cloves minced (about 3 teaspoons)
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

For the Meatballs:

  • 1 ½ cups turkey or chicken breast mince
  • 4 cloves of garlic crushed
  • 2 tbsp pesto sauce
  • 1 cup grated zucchini
  • 1/3 cup gluten-free oats or quinoa flakes
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ teaspoon Kosher salt or fine sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper freshly crushed

Instructions

For the Pesto Sauce:

  • Pulse basil, pine nuts, and garlic cloves in a food processor.
  • Turn down the food processor at a low speed and slowly pour the EVOO. Scrape down the sides of the food processor once in a while to ensure even mixing.
  • Season with sea salt and black pepper to taste.
  • Take out 2 tablespoons for the meatballs recipe and transfer the rest to a container and keep refrigerated for later use.

For the Meatballs:

  • Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Prepare one to two full sheet pan lined with parchment paper.
  • Mix all of the meatball ingredients together in a medium-sized bowl.
  • Use a large ice cream scooper to scoop the mixture and form them into balls. This recipe should yield about 32 to 36 meatballs. If the mixture is too wet, mix in some more oats or quinoa flakes to hold its shape a bit so that you’ll be able to form them easily.
  • Place the formed meatballs on the sheet pan. Once all the meatballs are formed, bake them in the oven for 10 to 20 minutes, turning halfway, until it’s lightly browned or until the internal temperature reaches 165ºF.
  • Rest for 5 minutes before serving. Enjoy!
  • Serve immediately or refrigerate and reheat later.

Notes

  • Adding olive oil in a steady and small stream while the food processor is running will help emulsify the mixture properly, avoiding any separation and/or breakage.
  • Feel free to do this recipe ahead of time as it can last in the freezer for up to 6 months!

Nutrition

Serving: 4meatballs | Calories: 236kcal | Carbohydrates: 5g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 56mg | Sodium: 231mg | Potassium: 150mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 212IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 25mg | Iron: 1mg

Love this recipe? Share with us your thoughts in the comments section below.

Recommended products

Viking Culinary 3-Ply Stainless Steel Roasting Pan

5/5

T-fal Specialty Non-Stick 5 Qt. Jumbo Sauté Pan

4.5/5

Hamilton Beach 10-Cup Food Processor

4.5/5

Oster Pro 1200 Blender

4.4/5

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on email
Share on print
The Husband

The Husband

Hi! I’m Mike. I’m happily married and have a young daughter. I’ve lived all over the world and have learned a lot from seeing others’ perspectives. I’ve also had many life altering health challenges. Fortunately, my lovely and brilliant wife helped save me by finding a new and better way for us to live. We started The Healthy Treehouse to share what we’ve learned and to learn from others, too.