This sneak peak into Toby Amidor's newest book, Smart Meal Prep For Beginners, stole my heart and I am so excited to share this recipe with you! Although the book officially launches on July 31st, we're giving you insider access to my favorite recipe. If you're interested in purchasing the book, click here! Because once you try this recipe, you're going to wish you had the others (unless you just keep eating these zoodles on repeat, which isn't necessarily a bad thing)!
Turkey Meatballs with Carrots over Zucchini Noodles
Prep time: 25 minutes
Cook time: 20 minutes
Zucchini, carrot, or another spiralized vegetable makes a terrific low calorie and low carb substitute for grain pasta. However, you can always opt for whole wheat spaghetti or any type of alternative pasta like quinoa, bean legume, or rice. Just follow the directions on the manufacturer’s label for appropriate cooking times.
For the Turkey meatballs
1 pound of ground turkey (90% to 94% lean)
2 medium carrots, shredded
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
1 large egg, beaten
½ cup whole-wheat panko bread crumbs
½ cup finely chopped parsley
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoons of olive oil
4 servings (6 cups) of Zucchini Noodles with Lemon Vinaigrette (recipes below)
4 servings (2 cups) Chunky tomato sauce (recipe below)
For the Zucchini Noodles
Juice and zest of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon honey
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
¼ teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 medium zucchini, or 6 cups precut zucchini noodles
For the Chunky Tomato sauce
2 tablespoons olive oil
5 garlic cloves, minced
1 (28-ounce) can whole peeled plum tomatoes
1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper
½ cup basil leaves, cut into thin strips
To make the Meatballs
1. In a large bowl mix together the turkey, carrots, onion, garlic, egg, bread crumbs, parsley, salt, and pepper.
2. Shape 1 heaping teaspoon of turkey mixture into a ball, and place it on a large plate. Repeat with the remaining mixture to make about 20 meatballs.
3. In a large skillet over medium heat, heat the oil until shimmering. Add the meatballs and cook, covered, turning the meatballs occasionally until browned on all sides and a thermometer inserted into the meatballs reads 165 degrees F, 15-18 minutes.
4. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the meatballs to a clean plate.
5. Into each 4 containers, place 1½ cups of Zucchini Noodles with Lemon Vinaigrette and top with 5 meatballs and ½ cup of Chunky Tomato sauce
To make the Zucchini noodles
1. In a large bowl, whisk together the lemon juice and zest, olive oil, honey, Dijon mustard, salt, and pepper
2. Using a spiralizer, make zucchini noodles and add to the bowl with the lemon vinaigrette. Toss to combine.
3. Into each of the 4 containers, place 1 ½ cups noodles.
To make the Chunky Tomato Sauce
In a medium pot over medium heat, heat the oil until it shimmers. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the whole and crushed tomatoes, cover and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, for 20 minutes, breaking up the tomatoes as they cook. Stir in the salt, pepper, and basil.
Storage: Place the airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. To freeze, place the turkey meatballs and tomato sauce (without the Zucchini Noodles with Lemon Vinaigrette) in freezer safe containers and freeze up to 2 months. To defrost, refrigerate overnight. To reheat, microwave uncovered on high for 2-3 minutes, Alternatively, reheat the entire batch of meatballs and sauce in a medium saucepan on the stove top. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer until heated through 10-15 minutes.
Nutrition information (per container): Calories:458; Total Fat: 28g: Saturated fat 5g; protein 29g; Total Carbs: 27g; Fiber: 6g; Sugar: 13 g; Sodium 992mg
Recipe and photo credit:
Copyright Toby Amidor, Smart Meal Prep for Beginners, Rockridge Press, 2018. Photo courtesy of Elysa Weitala