Paleo Pesto Meatballs

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Meatballs are just plain old comfort food for me. Growing up we had spaghetti and meatballs at least once a week, it was always topped with a lot of Locatelli, accompanied by a big salad and sometimes even garlic bread.

My grandmother used to make her meatballs first thing in the morning (like 8am) and simmer them all day long. I would love to tell you that it was because she was a master cook who knew something we don’t, but the truth is she was pretty into watching afternoon soap operas and didn’t want anything to get in the way of that. We all have our things right?

I started making these Paleo Pesto Meatballs because they are super quick to whip up (assuming you have the Paleo Pesto made) and make an easy weeknight dinner my whole family loves.

The Pesto adds such a nice flavor to the meat and the sauce, all that is left to do is decide what to serve them on top of. For us, it’s usually cauliflower rice or zucchini noodles and as you can see in these pictures, I was short on time and didn’t even peel the zucchini noodles. Sometimes that is how it goes!


  • I have also made these Paleo Pesto Meatballs to serve alongside vegetables or over a salad and omitted the simmering in red sauce. If you do this, reduce the Paleo Pesto to 1/2 cup and make sure to cook the meatballs completely (no pink in the center!) in the frying pan. To do this, I typically lower the heat to medium low and they take around 1/2 hour. I have baked them but I really prefer the crispy edges of the frying pan.
  • They freeze really well, both raw or after being cooked (and cooled).
  • I make homemade sauce all the time and have yet to post it – I will do that soon and update this post with a link to the recipe. In the meantime, make your own or use your favorite organic, sugar-free spaghetti sauce.

P.S. We are having a pretty awesome giveaway on our BLEND site (starts today!!) from Bob’s Red Mill – head here to enter to win one of 3 canvas gift bags stuffed with smoothie making goodies!

5.0 from 3 reviews
Paleo Pesto Meatballs
7 Points Plus Per Serving -- Individual Serving is 2 Meatballs -- Serves 10 {Alternate Serving is 11 Points Plus Per for 3 Meatballs} This Points Plus calculation is prior to adding sauce as every sauce has different Points Plus depending on the ingredients.
Serves: 10
  • 2½ pounds pastured lean ground beef (15% fat)
  • ½ cup blanched almond flour
  • 1 large egg
  • 1½ teaspoons kosher salt
  • ¾ cup Paleo Pesto
  • Two 24-ounce Jars sugar-free organic pasta sauce of your choice (or homemade)
  • cauliflower rice or zucchini noodles for serving
  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine ground meat with almond flour, egg, salt and pesto. I like to use my hands and mix and just incorporated, don't overwork the meat or it will become tough.
  2. If you have a kitchen scale and want to get the exact portion size, weigh out 2.5 ounce mounds of the meat mixture. You should get 20 of them. Alternately, just try to make them the size of a golf ball and do your best to get them even.
  3. Use the palms of your hands to roll the meat into balls.
  4. Heat a large nonstick frying pan over medium high heat and cook the meatballs in batches, taking care not to overcrowd the pan. Cook each batch for 15 minutes, turning every 5 minutes, until the sides are nice and brown.
  5. Carefully remove meatballs from frying pan and gently drop into sauce. Simmer over a low light for at least ½ hour (longer is not a problem) until cooked through, serve and Enjoy!

Paleo Pesto Meatballs from

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  1. Gerri says

    Thank you for this recipe! I make it often. I will confess I just use the pesto I get at Costco but otherwise I stick to the recipe. I love the fact that I can make them in advance and have them anytime during the week. I’ve got a batch cooking right now. :)

  2. says

    Made these tonight and they are insane! I never would have believed a meatball with no bread or cheese could taste so good! Thanks for a great recipe!

  3. the father of ZEN says

    This recipe sounds amazing!!! Just curious to know if you think coconut flour would work in place of the almond flour???

    • says

      No, I don’t. Coconut flour is very absorptive and would totally throw off the moisture content. If you can’t do almond flour, you could try potato starch, arrowroot or even sunflower seed flour!

  4. Mary Fitzpatrick says

    Is the Weight Watchers 7 Plus Points per meatball? Does this include sauce and if so how much? Or just the meatball? Love, love, love that you included a weighing option for the meatballs…weighing makes such a difference.
    Made these and the almond flour makes for a very tender texture and the pesto so yummy and moist.

    • says

      Hi Mary,

      If you look at the top of recipe, I detailed out the PP info based on 2 or 3 meatballs. I suggest adding PP for you sauce separately since jarred sauces vary so much. Thanks for stopping by!

    • EverydayMaven says

      I am so jealous! I am not growing ANYTHING this year – even herbs as my sun cover is even larger than it was last year. Enjoy all of that basil!

  5. says

    Cooking meatballs all day is a lot! Although I’d definitely cook them several hours – they do taste better that way, IMO. Nice version of meatballs, and we have tons of almond flour in the freezer. Something I should try – thanks.
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