Oooooh hoo hoo, I’m over-the-moon about this one.
I love meatballs. That’s not a secret. Eventually there will probably be like, 50+ meatball recipes on this blog. The first thing I like about meatballs is that you can make a huge batch of them and have food for days and days. The second thing is that it’s easy to stuff a bunch of vegetables into them—and as any five-year old (or adult, for that matter) will tell you, this is good news.
This was inspired by some non-paleo Asian meatballs that I’ve made a few times for parties (or just for eating). This is the second time I’ve tried adapting them to be paleo. The first batch a few months ago was kinda blah so I started pretty much from scratch this time. They are like eating the inside of a potsticker, which we can all agree is the good part of a potsticker. Not only that, but they taste so much better than even the original ones. Nomnomnom.
Paleo & Whole30 approved
- 1 lb ground pork
- 2 finely grated carrots
- 3 green onions, minced
- 1-2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/2 cup of fresh cilantro, chopped (I used frozen Dorot cubes, since I didn’t have fresh)
- 2 T olive oil or melted coconut oil
- 1 T sesame oil (or sub olive oil or coconut oil if you aren’t eating sesame oil)
- 2 T coconut aminos (soy sauce substitute)
- 2 tsp powdered ginger
- salt, black pepper and red pepper flakes to taste (go easy on the salt, you can always sprinkle on more later)
- 1/4 cup almond flour
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- additional olive oil or coconut oil for frying
Preheat oven to 400 and line a baking sheet with foil or parchment Mix together all of the ingredients and roll into small balls. Heat some olive oil or coconut oil in a pan on high heat. Brown meatballs on as many sides as you can (you need enough room to roll them around, so don’t put too many in at once), transfer them to the baking sheet and bake for about 10-15 minutes. Or, you know, however long it takes for yours to be fully cooked.
Paleo Gyoza Sauce:
- 1/3 cup coconut aminos
- 1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
- 1 T sesame oil
- couple of fresh slices of ginger (or sub ground ginger)
- a small drizzle of honey (optional, but the added sweetness is nice in this sauce)
- black pepper and red pepper, to taste
Simmer all ingredients in a sauce pan for 3-5 minutes, stirring frequently. The honey will help to thicken the sauce a little, but it will be pretty watery by nature. Fish the fresh ginger out. DIP your meatballs. EAT.
Ideas, thoughts and other uses:
- I realize sesame oil isn’t always considered paleo, but I use it sparingly in recipes like this where it really adds a lot of flavor.
- You can skip the pan browning part, and increase the baking time to 25-30 minutes. Your meatballs just won’t have that tasty crust. Or just fry them all the way if you want and skip the baking altogether.
- These are perfect for parties served with the gyoza sauce or another paleo-friendly dipping sauce… or toothpick them to a cucumber slice with kimchi in between
- As a meal, these little guys are so versatile: I ate them as a salad and also with roasted brussels sprouts (just toss with olive oil and pop them on another sheet in the 400-degree oven for 25-35 minutes, stirring once). They’d also be great with an Asian slaw, fried cauliflower rice, lettuce boats, a zucchini or spaghetti squash “noodle”stir-fry, noodless meatball pho… I could go on and on.
- Next time, I’m going to try adding more vegetables. Maybe some extra carrots, water chesnuts, finely chopped mushrooms or cabbage as well. Mmmm.
Makin’ meatballs tonight? Let me know whatchoo think of these!