I didn’t grow up eating meatballs. It’s just not something you eat when your mom is a traditional Puerto Rican cook. Once I met my hubby, I quickly realized he loves Italian food (it may have something to do with the fact that he worked in a pizzeria during college)! He’s especially fond of meatballs, so here’s my spin on these delish little nuggets of heaven. These Asiago meatballs are tender, juicy and flavorful, even though they’re made with ultra-lean ground beef (96% lean)! I add in moisture with some skim milk, soaked whole wheat bread, and egg white. The result? A tender, delish meatball you can feel good about feeding to your family.
Serves 4, yield 10-12 meatballs
300 calories per serving (2.5-3 meatballs depending on size)
1 lb lean ground beef (93% or higher)
1 teaspoon olive oil
1/2 cup onion, finely diced
2-3 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1/3 cup skim milk
1 large egg white
3 slices low cal whole wheat bread (40 cal per slice), crusts trimmed
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
3/4 cup grated Asiago cheese
1/2 teaspoon salt & 1/4 teaspoon pepper
A 24 oz jar of your favorite pasta sauce
Preheat the oven to 425°F.
Cut the crusts off the bread, place the slices into a bowl, and cover with 1/3 cup skim milk. Set aside.
Meanwhile, in a saute pan, heat up 1 teaspoon of olive oil, and toss in the onion and garlic. Cook for 4-5 minutes, until tender.
Add the onions and garlic into a bowl. Break up the soaked bread with your fingers, and add it into the bowl as well, along with any milk that didn’t soak into the bread.
Add in the egg white.
Finally, add in the parsley, red pepper flakes, salt, pepper, oregano and Asiago.
Stir the mixture together until combined.
Add in the meat, and mix with a fork until thoroughly combined with the other ingredients. This will prevent it from getting overworked.
Using an ice cream scoop or measuring spoon, form 10-12 meatballs.
Place the meatballs on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
Bake for 15 minutes, until browned. You can broil them for a few minutes to get them golden on the top.
In a large pan, pour in the pasta sauce, then transfer the meatballs into the sauce. Spoon some sauce over them to keep them moist.
Cover the pan, and cook the meatballs on medium-low heat for 20-25 minutes, until they’re cooked through.
Serve with whole wheat pasta and an extra sprinkle of Asiago cheese.