SPINACH AND RICOTTA MEATBALLS
yield: ABOUT 14 MEATBALLS
- 1.25 lean ground beef
- 1/2 cup part-skim ricotta
- 2 handfuls fresh spinach leaves, sliced thin
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- fresh ground pepper, pinch
- 2 eggs, whisked
- 1/2 cup whole wheat panko
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 2 cups prepared marinara sauce
- mozzarella cheese
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- In a large mixing bowl, gently mix together ground beef, ricotta, spinach, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, pepper, eggs, panko and Parmesan cheese. I use my hands to combine (it helps to spread the ingredients better without overmixing).
- Heat your large oven proof pan over medium-high heat. Add 1 tablespoon cooking oil to pan (tilt pan to spread oil around). Roll meatballs (into slightly bigger than golf ball size) and carefully add to pan. Let meatballs sear for 2-3 minutes on each side until outside of meatballs are browned. Use tongs to turn meatballs in pan. Make sure to let the side searing get a good cook on it before turning (to keep from sticking and falling apart).
- Turn off heat. Add marinara sauce to pan, covering all of your meatballs with sauce. Cover pan with lid and place in oven and bake for 20 minutes until sauce is bubbling. Add mozzarella cheese to meatballs and bake uncovered for another 5-10 minutes until cheese is melted.
- Serve meatballs on their own, in rolls, with whole wheat pasta, over polenta or over sauteed kale. Enjoy!
If you do not have an oven proof skillet/pan, sear the meatballs first then carefully transfer to a glass baking dish (add a little sauce to bottom of dish before placing meatballs in to prevent sticking). Cover with foil if you do not have a cover.
I used this braiser for this recipe (and many others). Worth the investment, it's one of my favorite items in my kitchen!