Turkey Meatball & Chickpea Stew

I love meatballs so much! So does my beautiful niece, Elle! It’s the perfect comfort food, but I decided to put a healthier twist on it.

Did you know that turkey meatballs have 34% less fat than your standard beef meatball? That’s a big different to something that tastes exactly the same if you cook and season correctly. Below is the math on it to see for yourself

Type Calories Calorie Breakdown in Fat Calorie Breakdown in Carbs Calorie breakdown in Protein
Turkey Meatballs 42 26% 19% 55%
Beef Meatballs 57 60% 15% 25%

Note: This is a breakdown using a medium size meatball, but I made much smaller ones in case you were concerned on the calories.

Reference: 2011 Fat Secret All Things Food and Diet

Turkey Meatball Recipe (to make day before) Click on quick recipe below to enlarge and print

Meatballs are great in so many things! Whole wheat pasta, passed hors d’oeuvres (if you make mini ones like I have) or in a stew which is what I created! In order to save time, I recommend making your turkey meatballs the day before you make your stew

First, dice up your onion

Then, mix your raw turkey meat in with your onions and spices

Then, add your milk and eggs. You can always use heavy cream which is recommended, however it’s not healthy. If you do decide to use the heavy cream, just add an extra 20 mins on to your daily exercise that day

Mix all ingredients together so it is all evenly incorporated (You’ll get a nice arm workout here, but it’s not too intense)

Then you want to sprinkle some flour on a countertop and begin rolling your meat into small balls and be sure to sprinkle some of that flour in the meat so it sticks together

Place your mini turkey meatballs on a nonstick sprayed pan and in the oven they go for 15-20 mins. (No, they are not mini crab cakes, despite what you see/think).

When you take them out, make sure they are nicely browned all around. If you don’t mind slightly over-done meatballs, I recommend leaving them in a bit longer so they are harder and won’t fall apart in the stew that is next to come!

Now that my turkey meatballs are done, the rest is all downhill from here! It’s great breaking up your days to cook one dinner meal. It saves you time and doesn’t overwhelm you. Now, that your meatballs are done, take them out of the fridge so they are placed at room temp.

Toss your kale and basil into the cuisinart and only chop for a few seconds so it is coarsely chopped. In case you weren’t aware, kale is fully packed with nutrients that ward off disease. It’s loaded with beta carotene that helps your eye sight, it’s an excellent source if vitamin C which is important during flu season and lastly, it is packed with minerals such as iron, magnesium, calcium and potassium.  Not only do I feel smart because that last statement brought me back to the Period Table of Elements, but I also feel like eating kale is a smart choice for your health!

Then, you want to also coarsely chop up your Swiss chard and onion. The bigger the pieces of the chard and onion, the better J

Next, throw in your chopped onion and garlic in a pot and begin sautéing for 5 minutes

Add in your canned crushed tomatoes and red pepper and whatever you do.. DON’T drain your sauce. Pour it all in the pot.

Then, add in your chickpeas that have already been drained and rinsed and cook for 8-10 minutes

Toss in all your greens (kale, basil, swiss chard)

Cook for approx 6 minutes and let the greens wilt. (The pic below got a little steamy from the heat of the stew.. which is totally normal).

Add in your turkey meatballs to get good flavor and then sprinkle some sea salt and black pepper for some last minute flavoring

Curl up on the couch in your favorite sweats, dip a piece of crusty bread into your stew and enjoy!

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2 Comments

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2 responses to “Turkey Meatball & Chickpea Stew

  1. Jean

    FANTASTIC! This has certainly made my short list of terrific winter stews that I will make over and over. There is s sweet, yet spicy taste to this stew that makes you want to eat much more than you should (although it’s still so healthy). Also it keeps well in fridge for days, as good as when it is cooked. I love it

  2. This dish looks delicious. Thanks for the step by step instruction photos. BTW very cute baby!

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