Turkey and courgette meatballs

December 10, 2016

Turkey meatballs recipe

Turkey meatballs

Turkey has a rep for being a bit bland, but we’re disproving that theory with this flavour-packed recipe. These easy, moreish little bites make the perfect family dinner, portable lunch or fridge snack. (Just don’t say we didn’t warn you about the moreishness…)

It’s a super lean meat, but turkey breast mince makes surprisingly juicy meatballs and lends a really nice texture. It’s transformed even further when you mix it with a few fresh flavours as we’ve done here – plus a courgette for vegetable bonus points.

You’ll get about 18 golf ball sized meatballs from this. Even though there are two steps to the cooking, don’t be put off – it’s worth it for the flavour the pan-frying gives.

Eat them hot or cold. We like them best with a shredded carrot and cabbage salad dressed with lots of extra virgin olive oil and lemon juice.

Makes around 18 meatballs (we recommend 3-4 per person)

You will need:

  • 1 tbsp olive oil

For the meatballs:

  • 400g turkey breast mince
  • 1 egg
  • 1 large courgette, grated
  • 2 large spring onions (or 1 shallot), finely chopped
  • Small handful basil, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp each of sea salt and black pepper

Serving ideas: Shredded salad (we like lettuce, cabbage, grated carrot, with olive oil and lemon juice), wholemeal pitta pockets, flatbread, hummus, yoghurt sauce


  1. Heat the oven to 200°C/400°F/gas 6 and line an oven tray with baking parchment.
  2. For the meatballs, place all of the ingredients into a large bowl and mix until everything’s really well combined. Shape into balls around the size of a golf ball with your hands. The mixture will be quite wet.
  3. Heat a large non-stick frying pan over a moderate-high heat, and heat the olive oil. Cook the meatballs for about 5 minutes, moving them around until they’re browned all over. Transfer to the baking tray and cook in the oven for 8 minutes until they’re cooked through. While they’re cooking, warm your pittas or assemble any salads/sides/garnishes.
  4. Serve the meatballs with your choice of sides.


Skip a step If you’re short on time, you can simply cook the meatballs in the oven for 20-25 minutes instead.

See more Main Meal recipes

We adapted this recipe from Yotam Ottolenghi’s amazing Jerusalem book

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