Turkey meatballs don’t get the credit that they deserve. Just because they are made from extra lean meat doesn’t mean they have to be dry. In fact, it’s hard to believe that these meatballs are made from ground lean turkey meat. I would pick them over many other types of meatballs. No wonder that this recipe has been our family favorite for a long time.
I find that the best way to get the most tender, flavorful and juicy meatballs is to quickly sear them then cook over low heat covered until done. I use the same method to make my famous beer brats, extra tender chicken wings and other dishes. It only takes less than 30 minutes to cook these meatballs to the internal temperature of 160F. Don’t worry, the temperature will continue rising after you take them off the heat, reaching 165F in a few minutes.
To keep turkey meatballs moist, I add chicken broth, bread crumbs and minced onion to the mix. Instead of onion, you can also try leeks. I like using both interchangeably.
To boost the flavor, I sautee the onion and the garlic. Sauteeing softens them up, removes harshness, and adds flavor. Even more flavor comes from the freshly grated Parmesan cheese and Worcestershire sauce. Worcestershire is a must; it adds a beautiful savory zing.
I could say that these meatballs are so moist and tender that they don’t need any sauce. But I won’t. I like my turkey meatballs with a little bit of gravy, the recipe for which I provided below. Gravy and garlic mashed potatoes. A comforting dinner for a cold winter night. Or make turkey meatball sandwiches with sourdough bread or brioche buns.
If you are looking for a lighter and healthier version, serve them with roasted vegetables, or a zesty tomato and cucumber salad.
These meatballs are delicious, both freshly made and re-heated the next day. I like having leftovers for lunch. I recommend reheating them the same way they were cooked – in a pan over medium-low heat until the internal temperature reaches 160F.
If you’d like to freeze these meatballs, place them in a vacuum sealer bag, with the sauce, and freeze for a couple of hours, unsealed. Once the meatballs are firm, seal in a vacuum sealer and freeze for up to 3 months.
- 2 lbs ground turkey
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 cup onion minced
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1/4 cup chicken broth
- 1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 cup fresh parsley minced; plus more for garnish
- 1/4 cup green onion thinly sliced
- 1 egg beaten
- 1/2 cup bread crumbs seasoned
- 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese grated
- 1 tsp kosher salt plus more to taste
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
For cooking the meatballs
- 1 Tbsp butter unsalted
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 1 1/2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 cup water cold
- 2 Tbsp cornstarch
Preparing the meatballs
- Drizzle two tablespoons of olive oil into a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and the garlic. Saute for 5-6 minutes, until tender but not brown. Add the chicken broth and the Worcestershire sauce, and cook for another 2 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool.
- In a large bowl, gently mix the ground turkey with the rest of the meatball ingredients, including the sauteed onions and garlic. Do not overmix. Shape into 20 balls of equal size, about 1.5 inches in diameter.
Preparing the gravy
- To make the gravy, bring 2 cups of chicken broth to a boil in a saucepan. Add the cornstarch dissolved in cold water, followed by the Worcestershire sauce. Cook for a minute or so, until thickened. Set aside.
Cooking the meatballs
- In a large non-stick skillet, heat one tablespoon of olive oil and one tablespoon of butter over medium-high heat. Add the meatballs and cook, undisturbed, for 2 minutes or until browned. Flip and cook for another 2 minutes.
- Pour the gravy over the browned meatballs, lower the heat to low, cover and cook for about 15-20 minutes, or until the meatballs reach 165F internal temperature.
- Serve hot, over mashed potatoes, drizzled with the gravy from the pan, and garnished with minced parsley.
How many meatballs are in one serving? How many meatballs does the nutritional information cover?
Per 1 meatball. Nutrition is 1/20th (1 meatball) of the meatballs and 1/20th of the gravy.
What’s the serving size for the gravy?
Laura, I am afraid I haven’t really measured it that way and the recipe software is a bit limiting. The nutrition facts are calculated per one meatball (out of 20 total) and 1/20th of the total gravy. If your serving size is 5 meatballs, it will be 510 carries and it will be based on 5 meatballs and 1/4 of the total gravy. Hope this helps.
Could you bake these in the oven
Eileen, yes, you can cook them in the oven, but keep them covered. If you have a braiser, cook them in the braiser.
These are the best meat balls I’ve ever had! They are good with potatoes and today I put them over bow tie pasta with the gravel and parmesan cheese so so good! I’ll be making these all of the time. Ps I added a small can of Ortega chilies to the mix. Yummy.
Glad you liked my recipe, Cori. Enjoy!
Wow, Victor, these are absolutely delicious! I am so impressed. I also made the garlic mashed potatoes- wow. Admittedly I was also a bit lost in the directions. I think because the ingredients aren’t necessarily listed “in order” it becomes a little confusing. Regardless, these were so good. Thanks for sharing
Thank you for the kind words, Kris. Apologies for the order of the ingredients; I will correct that. Enjoy!
This came out great but I must say the steps on how to make this for some reason were really confusing.
Thanks for the feedback. I will take a look at the steps and see how I can clarify them.
How many serving is this?
The entire recipe is 20 meatballs. You decide how many per serving. Calories are calculated per meatball.
how much chicken broth am i adding to the meat mixture in step 2? I don’t see it listed in the ingredients other than in the gravy
1/4 cup, as per the meatball ingredient list.
Just made these. Absolutely fantastic, great flavor. This recipe is definitely a keeper!
102 calories? Is that per meatball? With or without the gravy?
Per meatball with the gravy.
Hello- I may have missed it, but you did mention these were made of lean ground turkey, which I truly appreciate by the way… Did you use the 99 or 93/7? Thanks!!
Kimberly, both will work fine but I usually buy 93/7.
Thanks! I wanted to know what your macro breakdown was based on… The 93/7 is good since it will allow for more moist meatballs 🙂 Thanks for the response!!
That’s right, some fat makes better meatballs. If you want them really moist but less fat, add more chopped onion. Works really well.
This was amazing!! I made the meatballs, along with the garlic mashed potatoes, and it was such a delicious, comforting meal. My husband asked for me to make this again, which says a lot (believe me). I don’t even think he knew it was turkey! 😉 Thank you for this wonderful recipe!
You are very welcome!
I just came to say these were a hit. They are delicious, soft, just perfect! I skipped the parsley because it’s not my favourite, but great nonetheless. The gravy was incredible as well. 10/10
Glad to hear it, Andrea. Enjoy!
These look delish! What is the serving size? I may have missed it but I’m assuming not just one meatball?
The serving size is, of course, more than one meatball. The calories are calculated based on 1/20th of meatballs and 1/20th of gravy. Four – five per person I’d say.
These were soooo good! Really flavorful.
I’m watching carbs so I substituted flaxseed meal for breadcrumbs and it was still good! I also served it with steamed cauliflower with the gravy and a side of steamed spinach.
Such an amazing recipe. It’s my go to for a special dinner for my boyfriend because it’s become his absolute favorite! Thanks for sharing!
You are very welcome, enjoy!
Hi there. I’m trying to lose weight and I’m confused – you replied to one person that the nutrition value is only for 1 meatball but I also see you told another person that the serving size is 4-5 meatballs. Can you please clarify? Thanks so much!
Chris, sorry about the confusion. The nutrition calculations in this recipe are per 1 meatball with gravy. The serving would be more than 1 meatball in most cases, like 3-4-5 so you’d have to multiply the number of calories per meatball by the number of meatballs that you have in your specific serving. Hope this clarifies it.
Made these tonight, excellent!!!! We needed to do Gluten-free, so used almond meal equally, instead of bread crumbs and turned out great! And the gravy was surprisingly good considering such few ingredients. Will definitely be making again 🙂 Thankyou!
You are welcome.
I have got to say these meatballs are the best turkey meatballs I’ve ever had. So moist and full of flavor. And the gravy is great! A little thin for my liking but that’s an easy fix. Made mashed potatoes to go with it. This is definitely being made a lot in my house.
Is the nutrition info for 1 meatball?
Yes, it’s per one meatball.
I just made this recipe for dinner and paired it with a simple salad with lemon juice, and it was amazing! I also found that I only needed about 12 minutes to thoroughly cook the meatballs with a gas stove. I was stunned by how juicy it turned out; thank you so much for the recipe!
You are very welcome, Julie. Happy cooking!
The best meatballs I’ve EVER had. First time I baked them in the oven. Didn’t do the gravy and they were unbelievable. Tonight I made them the way the recipe calls for and they’re still unreal. This is now a permanent recipe in my home
Happy to hear that, Cote. Thanks for your feedback.
These meat balls were delicious would make them again
Great meal! The meatballs were flavorful and moist. I made it with roasted redskin potatoes.
This recipe is sooo good. The gravy and meatballs were amazing! I did not have parsley, so I used fresh basil. What’s not to like about basil? I served with roasted broccoli and cauliflower, and brown rice. My family loved this recipe. I will definitely add to my regular rotation, and share this recipe with my friends.
Mase these tonight after a day out in the pool. And we were all tired but had to eat. These were easy to fix a d so good. We really enjoy your recipe. I am sure this will be made again. Thanks for such an easy meal.
You are very welcome, Autumn.
What a great recipe! So tasty with little fuss. My family loved it.
What’s the serving size? Is the calorie count for one meatball?
Yes, per meatball and a portion of the sauce.
So I had to come back to tell you this is without a doubt one of the best recipes I have ever made from Pinterest! They are fantastic! Unfortunately hubby called at the last minute and will be late. I went ahead without him. I just couldn’t wait after smelling them cooking. Thank you so much for sharing!
Nothing wrong with making another batch 😉 Thanks for your feedback, Kimberly, and happy cooking!
Making these right now. My kitchen smells heavenly! Can’t wait to eat. I’m salivating!
This is the best recipe I have tried in a long time. Absolutely delicious, don’t change a thing. Thank you.
You are very welcome. Happy cooking!
My mom has a family turkey meatball recipe.. and don’t tell.. but these beat hers! Definitely making again! I put these over yellow rice with almonds and it was amazing!
Wow, this must be one of the highest praises I’ve ever received for my recipe. Thank you for the kind word. Happy cooking!
Making this tonight! But can I use flour instead of corn starch?
Yes, absolutely. Just double the amount as cornstarch has twice the thickening power of flour.
I enjoyed these meatballs totally! Nice change with the brown gravy and potatoes!
I made these turkey meatballs for lunch today, with the garlic mashed potatoes, and they turned out excellent. This recipe is a keeper, will be making again soon. Thanks for sharing!