Baked Turkey meatballs made with lean ground turkey, sage, rosemary and thyme then smothered in homemade cranberry sauce made with orange zest and Resiling! A delicious appetizer perfect for the holidays or to bring to parties so you have something healthy and delicious to munch on to stay on track!
I am not sure why turkey is usually only eaten during the holiday season from October to December but I love this giant bird. Turkey meat is much more flavourful than chicken and needs only a few simple ingredients to really sing. Add some cranberry sauce to these simple baked turkey meatballs and you have an appetizer that is bursting with flavour!
I got to thinking while I was reviewing all the holiday recipes I have created this year and it occurred to me … wait a hot minute. I have no appetizers to share! How is this even possible considering my favourite meal is a table full of charcuterie or appies!
I made this Cranberry Sauce with Late Harvest Reisling & Orange Zest and had a tonne of great ideas but I got bogged down in making all things dessert and dinner that I totally forgot to put the recipe to use! So considering it is almost New Year 2020 it is about time I got this Baked Turkey Meatball Appetizer recipe up!
This recipe is very easy to throw together all in one bowl.
Here are the ingredients you will need:
- 1 pound ground turkey
- 1/2 medium onion- finely chopped
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp dried sage
- 1 1/2 tsp chopped fresh rosemary
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 2 cups whole cranberries
- 1/2 cup honey
- 2/3 cup Late Harvest Reisling
- 1 tsp orange zest
how to make baked turkey meatballs
Preheat the your oven to 400ºF. In a medium bowl combine the ground turkey, finely chopped, egg, chopped rosemary, thyme, sage, salt and pepper. Use your hands to mix the ingredients together just until combined. Do not overwork or meatballs they will become tough.
Scoop a heaping teaspoon out of the turkey mixture and form a ball using your hands. I find that after a bit the turkey meat sticks to your hands and makes it hard to roll the balls nicely. Washing your hands a few times during this process helps to reduce the stickiness and makes it easier to continue forming the turkey balls.
Place the balls of the turkey mixture evenly out on a ceramic baking pan or on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or foil. Leave about an inch between each ball to allow for even cooking. Bake for 15-17 minutes or until meatballs have reached an internal temperature using a meat thermometer of 165 º F. Remove from the oven.
While the turkey meatballs are cooking this is the perfect time to make the Cranberry Sauce. Then once the turkey meatballs are done simply toss them in the cranberry sauce and serve!
other ways to serve turkey meatballs
- Serve the turkey meatballs with the cranberry sauce on the side for dipping
- Place the meatballs in a crockpot with the cranberry sauce to bring to parties or to reheat the cranberry sauce you made previously with the meatballs.
- Use these baked turkey meatballs instead of beef meatballs with your pasta dinner
- Bring these meatballs as a quick lunch or snack at work or school
- Toss these turkey meatballs in pasta sauce and make a delicious meatball sub!
Can you freeze baked turkey meatballs?
You sure can! I would recommend freezing the meatballs and the sauce separately. The meatballs can be frozen for up to 2 months. The sauce tends to thicken up when frozen so add about 2 tbsp to a 1/4 cup of water to thin out the cranberry sauce when warming up before tossing in the meatballs.
To warm up the meatballs, simply let thaw in the fridge overnight and then reheat in the oven.
Another great option is to warm both the meatballs and sauce up in a slow cooker.
Baked Turkey Meatballs with Cranberry Sauce
- Chopping Knife
- Medium bowl
- Medium Saucepan
- Measuring Cups
- Measuring Spoons
- Baking Sheet
- Toothpicks (optional)
Baked Turkey Meatballs
- 1 lb ground turkey
- 1/2 medium onion finely chopped
- 1 tsp dried sage
- 1 1/2 tsp fresh rosemary finely chopped
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1/2 cup Cranberry Sauce – see recipe https://thedeliciousspoon.com/homemade-cranberry-sauce-recipe/
- Preheat oven to 400F
- In a medium bowl add 1 lb ground turkey, 1/2 an onion finely chopped, 1 egg, 1 tsp dried sage, 1 1/2 tsp finely chopped fresh rosemary, 1 tsp dried thyme, 1 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp black pepper. Mix together with hands just until well blended. Do not overmix.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or foil. Scoop out one heaping teaspoon of the turkey mixture at a time and use hands to form a small ball. Place the balls of turkey evenly on the baking sheet leaving about 1 inch between each ball.
- Bake for 15-17 minutes or until the turkey balls have reach an internal temperature according to a meat thermometer of 165F. Remove from oven.
- While meatballs are baking make the cranberry sauce. The recipe can be found here: https://thedeliciousspoon.com/homemade-cranberry-sauce-recipe/
- Toss the baked turkey meatballs in 1/2 a cup fo the cranberry sauce until well coated and serve individually with a toothpick or serve the turkey meatballs with the cranberry sauce in a separate bowl for dipping.