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!
- 2 1/2 pounds pastured lean ground beef (15% fat)
- 1/2 cup blanched almond flour
- 1 large egg
- 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 3/4 cup [url href=”https://www.everydaymaven.com/2013/paleo-pesto-recipe/” target=”_blank” title=”Paleo Pesto Recipe”]Paleo Pesto[/url]
- Two 24-ounce Jars sugar-free organic pasta sauce of your choice (or homemade)
- [url href=”https://www.everydaymaven.com/2013/how-to-make-cauliflower-rice/” target=”_blank” title=”How to Make Cauliflower “Rice””]cauliflower rice[/url] or [url href=”https://www.everydaymaven.com/2013/how-to-make-zucchini-noodles/” target=”_blank” title=”How to Make Zucchini Noodles + 10 Zucchini Noodle Recipes”]zucchini noodles[/url] for serving
- 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.[img src=”https://www.everydaymaven.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/IMG_9565.jpg” width=”550″]
- 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.[img src=”https://www.everydaymaven.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/IMG_9568.jpg” width=”550″]
- Use the palms of your hands to roll the meat into balls.[img src=”https://www.everydaymaven.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/IMG_9569.jpg” width=”550″]
- 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.[img src=”https://www.everydaymaven.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/IMG_9574.jpg” width=”550″][img src=”https://www.everydaymaven.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/IMG_9576.jpg” width=”550″][img src=”https://www.everydaymaven.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/IMG_9579.jpg” width=”550″]
- Carefully remove meatballs from frying pan and gently drop into sauce. Simmer over a low light for at least 1/2 hour (longer is not a problem) until cooked through, serve and Enjoy![img src=”https://www.everydaymaven.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/IMG_9580.jpg” width=”550″]