Chipotle Meatballs

Chipotle Meatballs 2015Meatballs are quite seriously one of the best Paleo snacks around. You can make a giant batch, eat some for dinner, save a few for the week, and freeze the rest for emergency moments. You can also make them taste like just about anything, which is really important if you love variety and traveling the globe through your food. I’m from California and one of the things that I miss deeply about living there is the ability to wake up and, on any day, have a craving for a particular nationality’s cuisine that I can satisfy virtually immediately – either by going to an amazing restaurant or by readily finding the ingredients and making it at home. I love living in Colorado, but California (I’ve lived up and down the coast) is truly a foodie’s heaven. But…since I don’t live in CA anymore, I need to feed my heart and soul with flavors that transport me. Otherwise, I get bored.

If you are new to Paleo or you are trying to reinvigorate your Paleo eating, then I suggest you make a batch of these. They’re delicious, easy, and you can do a bunch of different things with them. We ate them just like in the picture with a dollop of quick guacamole and a handful of veggies that we grabbed because we were in a hurry, but you could slice them and have them in a Paleo tortilla or wrap them in lettuce and add salsa or serve them with a Mexican inspired cauliflower rice. And you know what else? You can just eat them! Pre-workout, post-workout, protein-filled snack…whatever you need! Seriously, meatballs save the day.

You could probably add an extra minced chipotle pepper if you like it spicy. I also had to feed a 10 year old so I didn’t want to go overboard. As I think about these, I’m wishing I had some Carrot-Jicama Chipotle Slaw handy because they would make an excellent lunch paired together. Whatever you do with them, I hope you enjoy it!

Chipotle Meatballs

About 3 lbs. of ground beef

1 shallot, finely chopped, about 3 Tbsp.

2 1/2 tsp. garlic powder

2 1/2 tsp. onion powder

1 1/2 tsp. ground cumin

1 tsp. dried oregano

1/4 tsp. chipotle powder

2 1/2 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, minced (3 if you like it spicy)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Place meat and all the seasonings in a large bowl.
  3. Mix everything together gently but completely.
  4. Form meatballs that are about 2 oz., or small golf ball sized, and place them on a cookie sheet.
  5. Bake for about 15 minutes, switching oven shelves about half way through.
  6. Check for doneness and cook another 3-5 minutes if not done to your liking.
  7. Let rest for about 10 minutes and then enjoy!

Notes: These keep well in the refrigerator or freezer for future snacks and meals, so make a bunch!

 

 

 

Italian Meatballs

Italian MeatballsMeatballs are a Paleo girl’s (or guy’s!) best friend. You can make a bunch of these fairly quickly and then eat them for multiple meals or snacks throughout the week. One of the things that I’ve learned on my Paleo journey is that having prepared food in the fridge makes a world of difference. When you eat the Standard American Diet, if you’re hungry at a moments notice, you can grab a granola bar or yogurt and move on. Sometimes being Paleo means you have to be a little more creative and a little more flexible with how you look at food. I like to have extra protein in my fridge at all times, and meatballs are perfect for that!

As a matter of fact, these meatballs started first as a dinner. I threw together a quick marinara sauce on the stove and plopped in about a dozen of the already cooked meatballs. I let them simmer for a bit to get comfortable together, and then we ate them on top of roasted spaghetti squash. The next day, they were my lunch and it looked more like the picture. Confession: After I took the picture, I chopped the meatballs up, added some more tomatoes, and spread them across three large lettuce leaves. More lettuce, more lunch. That’s how I like it.

I hope you have fun with these and please share with me if you do something delicious with them!

Italian Meatballs

2 lb. ground beef

1 lb. ground pork

1/3 c. coconut milk

1/2 c. almond flour

2 1/2 tsp. salt

1 tsp. pepper

2 tsp. garlic powder

2 tsp. onion powder

1 Tbsp. Italian seasoning

1 tsp. fennel seed, lightly crushed

1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes

1/2 c. fresh parsley, minced

Directions

1) Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Add all the ingredients to a large bowl and gently mix everything together. Hands work great for this because you can mix thoroughly but with a light touch.

2) Pinch off a small golf ball sized amount of meat. Gently roll the mixture in your hands to form a meatball about 1 1/2 in. across. Place on a baking sheet. Continue forming meatballs until the mixture is gone.

3) Place in the oven for about 23 minutes until cooked through. Use these meatballs for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks!

Makes about 35 meatballs