Italian Turkey Meatballs

  • Yield: servings


1/4cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/2cup minced yellow onion (1 small)
2 to 4large garlic cloves, minced
Salt and black pepper
2cups finely chopped escarole or romaine lettuce
2tablespoons finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley or basil
1pound ground turkey
1/2cup dry old-fashioned (rolled) oats
1/4cup grated Parmesan cheese (optional)
1large egg, beaten
3cups your favorite jarred meatless sauce


  1. Heat the olive oil over medium-low heat in a pan large enough to hold the vegetables. Add the onion and garlic, season with a pinch of the salt, and cook until the onion is softened but not browned, about 7 minutes. Add the escarole and parsley, season with a pinch more salt and some pepper, and cook until the escarole is completely tender and has absorbed almost all the oil, 8 to 10 minutes. If there is excess water in the pan from the escarole, turn up the heat and boil it away. Let the vegetables cool to room temperature.
  2. Combine the cooked vegetables and turkey in a mixing bowl and add the oatmeal, cheese (if using), egg, and salt. Use a fork or your hands to mix the ingredients until thoroughly combined. Form the mixture into 12 meatballs; wet your hands with cold water to make forming the meatballs easier.
  3. Bring the tomato sauce to a boil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Drop in the meatballs, reduce the heat, and simmer until the meatballs are cooked through, about 20 minutes.

Reprinted with permission from The Pink Ribbon Diet, Da Capo Press (Perseus Books)