Not Your Mama's Meatballs

As my oldest son gets well...older, he seems to have more and more sport events that take place right around or during the dinner hour. This means that I really need to be on my game these nights, and have something prepared ahead of time if I want to avoid standing in front of the pantry with a furrowed brow and growling stomach.

This is another slow cooker option that I'm loving at the moment. You've seen one meatball recipe, you've seen them all, right? This one is a little different. It uses quinoa as binding agent instead of bread crumbs, which adds a little more substance and keeps them together nicely. The hot sauce adds a kick and takes them from blah to BANG.

A note about serving....I have two kids that actually like hot sauce and one that doesn't. You could try this without the hot sauce, and sub in tomato sauce or reduce the amount of hot sauce I've listed here.  I also served this with zoodles, but it would be equally good with gluten free noodles, cauliflower rice or anything else you can dream up!


  • 1 lb lean ground turkey (vegetarian fed if possible)
  • 1/2 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1/2 carrot, minced
  • 1/2 celery rib, minced
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. pepper
  • 1 cup hot sauce (like Frank‚Äôs)


  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees
  • Mix all the ingredients together in a large bowl - excluding the hot sauce
  • Roll into meatball - 1 inch in diameter. Place onto cookie sheet sprayed with cooking spray.
  • Bake for 5-7 minutes or until just browned on the outside.
  • Pour half of the sauce into the slow cooker. Add the meatballs.
  • Pour the remaining sauce over the meatball and stir.
  • Cover and cook on low for 4 hours.