Turkey Meatball Recipe

Leaner than beef, these Turkey Meatballs are healthy, packed with flavor, and incredibly moist on the inside. A combination of fresh and dried herbs give these meatballs an Italian flare while also providing a balance of flavors.

Try your ground turkey in my favorite turkey tacos or turkey chili! You might also enjoy my homemade rotisserie chicken recipe or copycat Chipotle Chicken, a long time reader favorite.

Leaner than beef, these Turkey Meatballs are healthy, packed with flavor, and incredibly moist on the inside. A combination of fresh and dried herbs give these meatballs an Italian flare while also providing a balance of flavors. Good and good for you, these meatballs freeze beautifully and can be reheated in no time. To sauce or not to sauce, I leave that up to you!

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Good and good for you, these meatballs freeze beautifully and can be reheated in no time.

To sauce or not to sauce, I leave that up to you!

What are the benefits of eating turkey?

Turkey is like the underrated protein powerhouse. It sure packs a nutritional punch by providing a high amount of protein, a low amount of fat, and a number of vitamins and minerals, including iron, zinc, potassium, phosphorus, vitamin B6, and niacin, which are essential for the body’s energy production.

Leaner than beef, these Turkey Meatballs are healthy, packed with flavor, and incredibly moist on the inside. A combination of fresh and dried herbs give these meatballs an Italian flare while also providing a balance of flavors. Good and good for you, these meatballs freeze beautifully and can be reheated in no time. To sauce or not to sauce, I leave that up to you!

How long do you cook turkey meatballs?

The length of time varies based on the size of the meatball and cooking method. Just keep in mind turkey is poultry, so cook until the internal temperature reaches 160 degrees on an instant read thermometer. The carry-over cooking will bring it up to the required 165 degrees.

Leaner than beef, these Turkey Meatballs are healthy, packed with flavor, and incredibly moist on the inside. A combination of fresh and dried herbs give these meatballs an Italian flare while also providing a balance of flavors. Good and good for you, these meatballs freeze beautifully and can be reheated in no time. To sauce or not to sauce, I leave that up to you!

How do you keep the meatballs from falling apart?

Eggs. In the case of meatballs, the egg’s job is simply to act as a binder. For every pound of meat, one egg is the perfect amount.

What’s the best method to get equal portions?

The easiest method is to use a small ice cream scoop. Not only does this give you equal portions, but creates the round shape you’re looking for. If you would like an even more precise measurement, scoop and place on your kitchen scale. Your looking for a 1 ½ ounce measurement for each meatball.

Leaner than beef, these Turkey Meatballs are healthy, packed with flavor, and incredibly moist on the inside. A combination of fresh and dried herbs give these meatballs an Italian flare while also providing a balance of flavors. Good and good for you, these meatballs freeze beautifully and can be reheated in no time. To sauce or not to sauce, I leave that up to you!

How do you freeze and reheat the meatballs?

  1. Scoop, cook, cool, and line the meatballs in a single layer on a baking sheet.
  2. Place in the freezer for 1 hour, or until solid.
  3. Transfer to a freezer safe container, label, date, and keep for up to one month.

To reheat, place on a baking sheet, cover with foil, and bake in 300 degree oven for 15 minutes, or until heated through.

If you would like to reheat in your favorite sauce, simply place the meatballs in with the sauce and cook over low heat for 10 minutes, or until heated through.

Leaner than beef, these Turkey Meatballs are healthy, packed with flavor, and incredibly moist on the inside. A combination of fresh and dried herbs give these meatballs an Italian flare while also providing a balance of flavors. Good and good for you, these meatballs freeze beautifully and can be reheated in no time. To sauce or not to sauce, I leave that up to you!

4.85 from 13 votes

Turkey Meatball Recipe

Leaner than beef, these Turkey Meatballs are healthy, packed with flavor, and incredibly moist on the inside. A combination of fresh and dried herbs give these meatballs an Italian flare while also providing a balance of flavors. Good and good for you, these meatballs freeze beautifully and can be reheated in no time. To sauce or not to sauce, I leave that up to you!
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword onions, turkey
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 7 servings
Calories 283kcal
  • 2 pounds ground turkey 93% lean
  • 1 cup bread crumbs or panko or rolled oats
  • 2/3 cup onion minced
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley minced
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup olive oil

To make the meatballs:

  • In a large bowl, combine ground turkey, bread crumbs, onion, parsley, eggs, garlic, Worcestershire sauce, basil, oregano, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. 
  • Using a strong spatula or your hands (I like to wear latex gloves), mix well. Shape the mixture into 1-inch balls (you should have around 48 total).

To bake the meatballs:

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil for easy cleanup. Coat a wire rack with nonstick spray and set on prepared baking sheet.
  • Arrange meatballs on rack, brush with oil, and bake until browned with crispy edges, about 15 to 20 minutes (an internal thermometer should read 155 degrees for 15 seconds).

To fry the meatballs:

  • Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Fry the meatballs in batches until browned on all sides and the meatballs are cooked, about 5 to 7 minutes per batch (an internal thermometer should read 155 degrees for 15 seconds). Add more oil between batches if the skillet looks dry.

To freeze the meatballs:

  • Arrange in a single layer on a baking sheet, not touching. Freeze until solid, about 1 hour, then transfer to a freezer-safe container and store up to 1 month.

Recipe Notes

Adapted from my Crockpot Meatballs recipe.

Nutrition

Calories: 283kcal

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  1. Sylvia

    This is an excellent recipe. It will be my standard for turkey meatballs in the future. Because I was making spaghetti wand meatballs I left the onions and garlic out of the meatball and put them in the spaghetti sauce with green pepper. I tried to give it 5 starships.5 stars

  2. Jessica Irene Wiegand

    I make these all the time. We love them! Questuon though. How long do they last as leftovers? Three days? TIA!

    1. meggan

      Hi Jessica, that’s great! Thank you! 4 days max. Like if you made them today, I would finish them up by the 4th day (Wednesday). I hope this helps. Thank you! Have a great Sunday! -Meggan

  3. Terri Anderson

    These meatballs are delicious. I made them gluten free with gluten free plain bread crumbs. I omitted the garlic as I didn’t have any but added 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese. I used 4 tsp dried parsley instead of fresh without loosing any flavor. They are delicious and would highly recommend.5 stars

  4. A

    Tasted pretty good. I used gluten free bread crumbs.4 stars

  5. Brad

    Delicious, but I cut the meat and (Italian style) breadcrumbs in half but kept all spices/seasonings/flavorings the same. There’s still something missing, but delicious. First time making meatballs myself too! No more frozen for me!

  6. Shelley

    Very nice recipe. I would kick up the seasoning a bit more & add a little tomato paste.4 stars

  7. Amy T

    Made a batch for the first time tonight. Cut the recipe in half. Made 36 meatballs using a melon baller. Instead of brushing with olive oil before baking, I sprayed on the olive oil. Thank you for this great recipe and preparation notes.5 stars

  8. Nova

    Average. A little bit bland, even with fresh herbs. Be sure to brown them in a pan first if you are baking them.

  9. Sam

    You list olive oil in the ingredients but don’t mention it when writing out what to combine. Is it a typo or is the olive oil only for a specific cooking method?

    1. Meggan

      Hi Sam, sorry that the recipe may be written confusing way. The oil isn’t used “to make the meatballs section,” it is in either the “to bake the meatballs” or “to fry the meatballs” sections. If you are baking the meatballs, they get brushed with oil before going into the oven. Hope this helps! -Meggan

  10. Emily

    Great easy recipe! I made a few last night for dinner and froze the rest. Any recommendations on how to bake from frozen?5 stars

    1. Meggan

      Hi Emily! Here you go, sorry for the delay in my reply:
      Oven instructions: 1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit. 2. Place frozen meatballs in a single layer on a baking sheet (line the pan with foil for easy cleanup if you want). 3. Heat for 15-20 minutes or until hot. Microwave instructions (1000 watts): 1. Place 6 frozen meatballs on a microwave-safe dish. 2. Heat on high for 1 minute or until hot. 3. Remove and let stand for 1 minute. 4. For every 6 additional frozen meatballs add 1 minute of heat time, rotating meatballs every minute. Stovetop instructions: 1. Heat sauce or gravy in saucepan. 2. Add frozen meatballs. 3. Cover and heat on medium for approximately 25 minutes, stirring occasionally.

      I hope this helps! Thanks! -Meggan

  11. Nicole

    We made these and put them in the freezer in preparation to have our first baby (after tasting a few, of course!! they are awesome!!) How do you recommend reheating them after frozen?5 stars

  12. Kara

    Made these tonight and they were delicious! Whole family had seconds (with two kids 9 and 6)! My husband even liked them! I had with spaghetti squash and kids and hubby had with pasta. I pan seared then put in the crockpot so we could have ready when we came home from a baseball game.5 stars

  13. Meghan

    I did these and accidentally did 1 lb ground Turkey and the same amounts of all the rest! Whoops :) still very good. Also I added 3 tablespoons of blue cheese and did them with Frank’s red hot! So good5 stars

    1. Meggan

      Hi Meghan! Wow, that variation sounds AWESOME! I’m so glad you liked them! :D -Meggan

  14. Calorie question, maybe my math is wrong?? 2lbs of turkey, making 48-1.5oz meat balls would take 4.5 lbs of turkey. Please help. Thank you!!

    1. Thank you so much for helping me out!! Also your time, your meatballs rock! My family didn’t even realize they weren’t beef.5 stars

    2. Meggan

      Hi Amy, sorry for the delay in my response. I wanted to get this right for you, but couldn’t feel great about it unless I retested the recipe. I finally had a chance today. Sorry if this is too much information, but I wanted to be specific for you. Below, I copied the recipe, and I put my notes in parentheses.

      2 pounds ground turkey
      1 cup bread crumb, panko or oats (I used 1 cup of panko which weighed 2.33 ounces)
      2/3 cup onion minced (This weighed 3 ounces)
      1/2 cup fresh parsley minced (This weighed .7 ounces)
      2 large eggs
      3 cloves garlic minced
      2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
      1/2 teaspoon dried basil
      1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
      Salt and freshly ground black pepper

      (I weighed everything when it was mixed, and it was 43 ounces. I made what I would consider very “standard sized” meatballs, and they weighed just over an ounce each. When all was said and done, I had 40 meatballs. So, I noticed our recipe card is a little off in saying that it will make 48 meatballs, which I am very sorry about. I will change that right away.)

      Does this answer your question? I hope so. Please let me know if you need more information, I will be more than happy to help!

  15. Julie

    The whole family loved them which is very rare.  For my son, I made them into a sub with some Parmesan and blended shredded cheese and the rest of us ate them with pasta.  They even tasted good without the sauce!5 stars

  16. They turned out fantastic! Had a pound of meat, so I cut the recipe in half.5 stars

  17. Michael

    is there any preferred dipping sauce for this? I was thinking about trying a pizza sauce or marinara? what are your thoughts?

    1. meggan

      Hi Michael, I made the recipe for just plain turkey meatballs in the hopes that you could use them with whatever sauce you made or bought. I do love them with marinara, or if you’re feeling crazy, Frank’s Red Hot is awesome on turkey meatballs (obviously depending on what you are doing with them; if I make them for meal prep, I do the hot sauce and add it in the moment). Also really great with alfredo sauce if that’s your thing. I hope this is helpful! If you need anything else, just let me know. -Meggan

  18. Katie

    Thank you for this recipe! It’s the best- my kids love them so much! I make them almost weekly!5 stars

    1. Vona

      I am using three pounds of ground turkey would I need the tweak the ingredients measurements or no

    2. Meggan

      Hi Katie, yes, I would change the ingredient measurements for sure. I would increase like this:

      3 pounds ground turkey 93% lean
      1.5 cup bread crumbs or panko or rolled oats
      1 cup onion minced
      3/4 cup fresh parsley minced
      3 large eggs
      4 or 5 cloves garlic minced (4 if you like garlic, 5 if you LOVE garlic)
      1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
      3/4 teaspoon dried basil
      3/4 teaspoon dried oregano
      Salt and freshly ground black pepper
      1/4 cup olive oil (plus 1-2 tablespoons more if needed)

    3. Meggan

      Thanks Katie! It’s definitely a favorite with my kiddos as well! :)

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