These asian turkey meatballs are loaded with veggies and served with a super fresh jalapeño cilantro aioli. They're easy to make, dairy-free, gluten-free, and Whole30 and Paleo-compliant. Best of all, they're delicious.
Here's what you need.
For the Asian Turkey Meatballs:
- Lean ground turkey. We get 93% lean, but use whatever you like.
- Mushrooms. Baby bellas are our favorite because they're easily accessible, inexpensive, and still have a lot of flavor. Don't skip the mushrooms! They keep these meatballs moist.
- Green onion
- Fish sauce. Don't let this ingredient intimidate you--it adds so much flavor to the finished product. You can usually find it in the condiment or international foods aisle at the grocery store. Red Boat is a Whole30 compliant brand.
- Coconut aminos. You can also use soy sauce if you're not following a gluten-free/Paleo/Whole30 diet.
- Carrots. We use shredded carrots.
- Pantry ingredients/spices: garlic, black pepper, salt, crushed red pepper, oil (pick something with a high smoke-point, like avocado oil).
For the spicy cilantro aioli:
- Mayonnaise. Make sure it's Whole30/Paleo compliant if you're following a Whole30/Paleo diet.
- Fresh lime juice
- Pantry ingredients/spices: garlic, salt, and black pepper
Here's how you make the meatballs:
The meatballs are easy. In a large mixing bowl, combine ground turkey, chopped mushrooms, chopped green onions, shredded carrots, egg, minced garlic, chopped cilantro, fish sauce, coconut aminos, black pepper, salt, and crushed red pepper. I find it's easiest to mix it all up with my hands, but a spoon works too.
Then add oil to a large nonstick pan over medium heat. Form the meat into balls with your hands, and place them into the hot pan one at a time. I make mine about 1.5-2 inches in diameter, but you can make them however big you want.
Let the meatballs cook for 2-3 minutes, or until the bottom has a nice sear. Then use tongs to flip to another side. Cook each additional side for another 2-3 minutes, or until all sides are seared and the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees, about 10 minutes. My meatballs usually end up somewhat square in shape--that's ok...they still taste great. Because these are gluten-free and don't have any kind of binding ingredient, they're a bit soft and don't always retain their shape.
Once the meatballs are done, remove the pan from the heat and set aside.
Here's how you make the cilantro aioli:
This one is super easy...you ready?
Combine cilantro, jalapeño, mayonnaise, lime juice, garlic, salt, and black pepper in a food processor and process until smooth. Transfer to a bowl and serve with the meatballs!
Suggested sides for these meatballs:
We like to serve these meatballs in a bowl with lots of sides. We suggest:
- Cauliflower rice or regular rice (if you're not following a Whole30/Paleo diet)
- Broccoli slaw
- Pickled jalapeños
- Red pepper flakes
- Avocado slices