Italian Parmesan Meatballs with “Zoodles”

So, the microwave in our office is located on a shelf that sits directly above our very expensive color printer, which was just recently replaced I might add. Does this seem like a really bad idea to anyone else? Especially when microwaving something involving, oh I don’t know, marinara sauce?

(If our printer suddenly stops working, I had nothing to do with it.)

And speaking of marinara sauce, just wait until you see what I have in store for you today!

meatballs 1

Is this picture somewhat cheesy? Ok, maybe it is. Did I see stars when I first took a bite of this awesome dish? Maybe not exactly, but close enough! It was that. good.

This was the first time I’ve made “zoodles”, or noodles made out of green zucchini. My Mom bought me a julienne peeler for Christmas just for that reason, and it’s…July. Heh. Whoops. Better late than never!

Making the noodles was surprisingly easy, once I got the hang of the julienne peeler. Then I simply took the “noodles” and tossed them into a hot skillet with some olive oil, salt, and pepper. Then I topped my zoodles with my italian parmesan meatballs and that was that!

meatballs 2

The result? One of the best meals I’ve eaten in a long time No lie. I know I say that a lot, and I may may just the slightest bit dramatic sometimes, but seriously? The meal was definitely worth it.

When I first set out to make dinner I intended to use my ground turkey to make meatloaf. For whatever reason I changed my mind at the eleventh hour and made meatballs instead! These particular “italian parmesan meatballs” consist of ground turkey, shredded parmesan cheese (obviously), onion, fresh parsley and spices. You could easily omit the cheese to be truly paleo (and Whole30 approved, which is good because I’m going to be starting another Whole30 in the very near future), but I think the parmesan adds a little flavor kick.

meatball 4

They’re so cute, aren’t they?

These meatballs (very similarly to my apple cinnamon breakfast sausage) can be baked or pan fried, although I prefer baking because it uses less oil and makes less of a mess in my kitchen. Once I took them out of the oven, I tossed them with some sauce (full disclosure: because I had half a jar of pizza sauce left over from my cauliflower crust pizza, I used that. It was awesome – probably because pizza sauces uses more spices than regular marinara sauce).

You could also serve these meatballs over spaghetti squash, but to be honest? I think I prefer the zucchini! It holds up better and to me it felt more like spaghetti noodles. But, to each his own!

meatball 3

WHAT YOU NEED (makes approximately 15 meatballs)

1 lb ground turkey

1/2 white onion, diced fine

1 handful fresh parsley, coarsely chopped

1 tbsp savory seasoning (I used McCormick’s salt free blend)

1 egg

1/4 cup pecan meal

1/2 cup parmesan cheese, shredded

1 clove garlic, minced

WHAT TO DO:

Preheat oven to 350. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients and mix well. Form into uniform sized meatballs and lay out on a aluminum foil covered baking sheet. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes or until cooked through. Toss with your favorite pasta sauce and serve over zoodles or spaghetti squash; or enjoy these little guys just plain!

meatballs 6

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