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Red Curry Thai Turkey Meatballs

Tender and juicy turkey meatballs full of curry, spice and everything nice!  Deliciously savory and super healthy because they are made with lean turkey.  Your meatball game just reached a new level.

Tender and juicy meatballs full of curry, spice and everything nice! Deliciously savory and super healthy because they are made with lean turkey. Your meatball game just reached a new level.

[wprm-recipe-jump] Some may say I have an obsession with meatballs.  I certainly have enough on this site.  But let’s be frank, it is one of the easiest dinners to put together!  You can douse them in BBQ sauce, throw them in a crockpot…basically meatballs have unlimited possibilities.  Several months ago…like 18 months to be exact I was scrolling through Pinterest during another rocking session with the munchkin.  She had been having nightmares and insisted I sit next to her instead of going to sleep.  So while she sweetly slept on my shoulder, I scrolled through hundreds and hundreds of gorgeous pictures on Pinterest.  And then I saw it…Spicy Thai Curry Noodle Soup. 
Spicy-Thai-Curry-Noodle-Pin1

This ladies and gentlemen is the work of my very, extremely uber talented friend Kathleen, Kat as I call her, who is the owner, chef, photographer and dish washer over at one of my favorite blogs…no really…one of my FAVORITE…Hapa Nom Nom.

I sat and stared at this glorious soup and thought YES!  YES! YES! THIS is what’s for dinner tomorrow.  I finally, was able to, ever so carefully lay the munchkin down, go get the remaining 2 hours of sleep and I had spicy noodle soup dreams.

The next day when I came home I was prepared to cook! Except for ONE tiny issue… the very next day…when I planned for this grand event of a recipe to take place, I forgot the noodles.  Epic fail. Typical Mila.

So I pondered on what else I could possibly create in the short 35 minute time span I had before hubs came home and the munchkin got bored and demanded my attention.

Tender and juicy meatballs full of curry, spice and everything nice! Deliciously savory and super healthy because they are made with lean turkey. Your meatball game just reached a new level.

So I took a look in the fridge and noticed some ground turkey sitting in the fridge that I had removed from the night before.   I frequently have ground turkey in the house.  It is honestly, one of the easiest and quickest meals to put together and I love how lean and full of protein it is.  The hubs happened to be on an uber healthy diet where we were weighing his food for a whole 5 minutes and he made me look up all the nutritional information of ground turkey for him.  He is such a child sometimes…But to be fair it actually proved to be some useful information.

I decided that Kat’s recipe will not go unused.  While I did not have my noodles for an ultimate Thai Noodle Soup..I did however have everything I needed for..turkey meatballs.  Savory, spicy, peanutty, succulent, turkey meatballs.  Seriously, I just know you cannot lose with meatballs…and these babies…they have EVERYTHING good going for them.

There a few super stars in this recipe and they really take the dish from “meh it’s aight” to “Holy wow there’s a party in my mouth…and I like it!”

  1. The red curry paste in this dish really makes all the flavors pop but it also adds the BEST color to the dish.  That orange red color…it’s just divine.
  2. The peanut butter in this dish give the dish it’s unique flavor but also it acts very similarly to how dijon acts in mayonnaise.  It emulsifies the sauce leaving it super smooth and sexy.

They had just a few simple ingredients in there. Ground turkey, onion, eggs, panko, garlic, soy, cilantro and seasoning go in a bowl.  Mix, mix, mix…with your pretty little hands.  Just make sure you do not over mix.  Mix JUUUUUUUST enough for everything to be combined.

Tender and juicy meatballs full of curry, spice and everything nice! Deliciously savory and super healthy because they are made with lean turkey. Your meatball game just reached a new level.

Next we prepare to scoop our turkey meatballs out onto a sheet pan.  And then I use my neat little trick to make sure my parchment paper for my sheet pan stays ON the sheet pan.

Prepare a sheet pan by spraying it with pan spray and THEN putting parchment on top.  Create a huge “X” on the sheet from one corner to the next.  This is a great trick to get your paper to stick onto the sheet pan.  I learned THAT in culinary school!  See how important education is!?!

X marks the spot isn’t just for treasure maps.

A warm and comforting bowl of classic Italian Wedding Soup that is healthy, filling and features a secret ingredient for the best tasting broth possible!

Next…take a melon baller, or a smaller ice cream scoop or a teaspoon and scoop out the meatballs onto the sheet pan.

Leave the edges a little “rougher” do not smooth them out, you will get nice, crispy edges this way.

Tender and juicy meatballs full of curry, spice and everything nice! Deliciously savory and super healthy because they are made with lean turkey. Your meatball game just reached a new level.

Place in a 450-degree oven for 12-15 minutes.  And start on the super easy sauce.  Place coconut oil, onion, garlic and ginger into a pan and cook over medium heat.

Tender and juicy meatballs full of curry, spice and everything nice! Deliciously savory and super healthy because they are made with lean turkey. Your meatball game just reached a new level.

Let that sauté for about 2 minutes until fragrant.  Then we add in our gorgeous red curry paste, a bit of chicken stock and my favorite ingredient of this dish…PEANUT BUTTER!

Tender and juicy meatballs full of curry, spice and everything nice! Deliciously savory and super healthy because they are made with lean turkey. Your meatball game just reached a new level.

Stir stir stir!!! The peanut butter not only acts as UBER flavor but it also acts as an emulsifier so you get a nice clean and smooth sauce.  Simmer for about 5 minutes until the sauce has thickened slightly.  At this point you can also throw the sauce through a Vitamix or food processor so that it is smooth.  I like mine with a bit of texture so I leave it as is.

By then the turkey meatballs are ready and gorgeously caramelized.  Remove from the oven.  And immediately add to the sauce. Tender and juicy meatballs full of curry, spice and everything nice! Deliciously savory and super healthy because they are made with lean turkey. Your meatball game just reached a new level.

Immediately garnish with fresh cilantro, add in a few squeezes of lime and serve over copious amounts of delicious white rice 🙂

Voila! Dinner is served!

Tender and juicy meatballs full of curry, spice and everything nice! Deliciously savory and super healthy because they are made with lean turkey. Your meatball game just reached a new level.

Make sure you visit Serve Turkey Community to learn some other fun facts about the magical turkey 🙂

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Red Curry Thai Turkey Meatballs

Red Curry Thai Turkey Meatballs


  • Author: Mila Furman
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 8 people 1x

Description

Tender and juicy meatballs full of curry, spice and everything nice! Deliciously savory and super healthy because they are made with lean turkey. Your meatball game just reached a new level.


Ingredients

Scale

Meatballs

  • 2 pounds ground turkey (you can also use, ground beef or chicken)
  • 1 onion (minced on microplane or shredded on a box grater)
  • 3 tbsp cilantro
  • 3 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 cup Panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 tbsp ground ginger
  • 5 garlic cloves minced on the microplaner
  • 2 eggs
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • few squirts of siracha (depending how spicy you like it)

Sauce

  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 medium onion (finely chopped)
  • 3 garlic cloves (minced on microplane)
  • 1 inch knob of ginger (minced on microplane)
  • 3 tbsp red curry paste
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1/2 a cup smooth peanut butter
  • extra cilantro and limes to garnish

Instructions

Turkey Meatballs

  1. Place ground turkey, onion, eggs, panko, garlic, soy sauce, cilantro and seasoning go in a bowl. Just make sure you do not over mix. Mix JUUUUUUUST enough for everything to be combined.
  2. Next we prepare to scoop our meatballs out onto a sheet pan. And then I use my neat little trick to make sure my parchment paper for my sheet pan stays ON the sheet pan.
  3. Prepare a sheet pan by spraying it with pan spray and THEN putting parchment on top. Create a huge “X” on the sheet from one corner to the next. This is a great trick to get your paper to stick onto the sheet pan. I learned THAT in culinary school! See how important education is!?!
  4. X marks the spot isn’t just for treasure maps.
  5. Next…take a melon baller, or a smaller ice cream scoop or a teaspoon and scoop out the meatballs onto the sheet pan.
  6. Leave the edges a little “rougher” do not smooth them out, you will get nice, crispy edges this way.
  7. Place in a 450-degree oven for 12-15 minutes.

Sauce

  1. Place coconut oil, onion, garlic and ginger into a pan and cook over medium heat.
  2. Let that sauté for about 2 minutes until fragrant. Then we add in our gorgeous red curry paste, a bit of chicken stock and my favorite ingredient of this dish…PEANUT BUTTER!
  3. Stir stir stir!!! The peanut butter not only acts as UBER flavor but it also acts as an emulsifier so you get a nice clean and smooth sauce. Simmer for about 5 minutes until the sauce has thickened slightly. At this point you can also throw the sauce through a Vitamix or food processor so that it is smooth. I like mine with a bit of texture so I leave it as is.
  4. By then the meatballs are ready and gorgeously caramelized. Remove from the oven. And immediately add to the sauce.
  5. Immediately garnish with fresh cilantro, add in a few squeezes of lime and serve over copious amounts of delicious white rice 🙂
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Category: Appetiser, Main Entree, Meatballs
  • Cuisine: Thai

[wprm-nutrition-label]

Tender and juicy meatballs full of curry, spice and everything nice! Deliciously savory and super healthy because they are made with lean turkey. Your meatball game just reached a new level.

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76 Comments

  1. Wow, Mila! These look absolutely stunning! And I feel so honored and flattered that my Thai curry noodles soup could be an inspiration for such an incredible dish! This is truly pure genius! Now that’s-a spicy meat-a-ball 😉 Gorgeous photos too – so freakin’ talented girl!

    Btw, love your X marks the spot tip!

    1. Hahahah that’s a SPICY meatball! Love it!!!! Thank you so much for your kind words…always! And I swear I still need to make those damn noodles 🙂

  2. Curry spiced ground turkey meatballs smothered in a delicious creamy red curry coconut sauce that is sure to be your new favorite meal! Grain-Free, Gluten-Free, and Paleo too! really says something about how tasty these are. Forget the typical spaghetti and meatballs in my house, my kids now want these instead. The coconut red curry sauce is so perfectly spiced that it s impossible to leave the dinner table with any ounce of it left on the plate.

    1. Hi Mark! Sorry for the delay…the onions are listed in the list of ingredients for both the sauce and the meatballs. The meatballs have 1 onion in it that is finely shredded on a microplane or a box grater. Hope this helps!

  3. Do you think that the coconut oil could be replaced with coconut milk? I like a creamier sauce and its so much cheaper! (I’d have to buy the coconut oil just for this dish…)

    1. Lauren,the oil is used to sauté food not as a favoring agent. Feel free to use any other oil you like. You can certainly add in some coconut milk at the end with peanut butter but it is certainly not necessary.

    1. Hi Rick! I am so sorry that happened! I happen to really love the strong peanut flavor so perhaps I will state that this is very strong in peanut flavor 🙂

        1. Some people do not like powerful flavors of peanut butter 🙂 I’m so glad you enjoyed them though Ruthie!

    2. Agree- meatballs are great but I would cut the peanut butter to 1/4 cup to decrease the overpowering peanut taste. I also added juice of half a lime and served with cauliflower rice. It was really good with these modifications!

  4. I made these tonight and mistakenly used shredded coconut instead of panko; well, they LOOK the same in the package! Anyway, I’m here to tell you we survived, and it was delicious! Try this substitution if you need to be gluten free!

    1. I AM SO GLAD YOU LIKED THEM! And what an awesome substitute!!! I bet it made it even more delish huh??? Super idea for the gluten free folks 🙂

      1. Hi mila,

        This dish looks delish! But i’ve just started a vegan lifestyle. What would u suggest instead of meatballs to make this dish vegan?

        1. Hi Renee!!! I actually have vegan meatballs on HERE! If you look up vegan meatballs you will find them 🙂 They have a bean base and will be wonderful. You can also do this with cauliflower for a fun vegan twist!

    2. Thank you!! Someone above said these are Paleo and I thought “not with panko”. So glad I read your comments as my husband does Paleo. Going to make these tomorrow night and put them over zoodles, can’t wait!!!

  5. This was an excellent recipe! I’m on a low carb/ high fat diet, so I substituted almond flour for the panko. I also have a TON of zucchini right now (because summer) so I shredded that up and added it to the meatball mix, which helped keep them very moist, but I did have to cook them longer.

    The sauce was one of the best Thai curries I’ve made and I’ve tried a lot of recipes. I like a lot of sauce so used the entire jar of red curry paste and also added a can of coconut milk and a bit of fish sauce. Plus some red pepper to spice it up.

    Served it on top of cauliflower rice and it was so good! Definitely satisfied my craving for Thai food. This one is a keeper!

    1. OMG what an awesome comment!!! Thank you so much!!!! I am so glad that it all worked out for you!!! And those substitutions were awesome!!!! Woo Hoo

  6. I tried this today because I realized I was missing an ingredient as well for another turkey recipe. I also thought the peanut butter was overpowering. Next time I will cut it in half or less. Added more curry paste and some coconut milk to help dilute the peanut taste. The family who are big peanut lovers enjoyed it. Great option for a quick weekday meal. I also think the meatballs would do great frozen and then all you need to do it make the sauce. Viola.

  7. I was looking for a curried meatball recipe & I’m glad I tried yours. I didn’t have red curry paste & my daughter has peanut allergy so I soaked a few pieces of cashews & almonds in hot water & pureed it with the tomato sauce i made. I sauteed onions, ginger, garlic, 2 roma tomatoes & some dried red chillies & pureed them along with the nuts. To give it that Thai flavor i added thinly sliced lemon zest when the sauce was simmering! It was yummy! Thanks for the inspiration!

  8. Hi if I do not like spicy at all would you recommend making this? Also what can I do to make it not spicy? Ty!

    1. Sure just taste the sauce as you go! Most of the curry paste have a ton of flavor but not that much heat 😉

  9. Hi! Looks amazing! I was at Trader Joe’s and couldn’t fine red curry paste, so I bought their red curry sauce, which has many flavorful ingredients and looks amazing but I’m not sure how much to incorporate into this recipe in place of the paste. Any suggestions?

  10. This was wonderful! I used beef rather than turkey because it’s what I had on hand and it came out great. Will make again for sure, thanks!

  11. I made this recipe tonight with riced cauli on the side and it is one of the best things I’ve made in a long time, thanks for breaking me out of my bad dinner rut! Like a previous poster suggested, I did add more red curry and used a can of full fat coconut milk with just a splash of broth. Came out great & the peanut taste was absolutely amazing to me. Thank you!

  12. You have the nutrition information but I don’t know what the serving size is how many people does this recipe serve? Or better yet on your nutrition information what is the serving size – how many meatballs or ounces of meat balls and how much sauce? I’m going to try this recipe tonight thank you for sharing!

    1. Hi Gwen! So sorry just seeing this! It should account for 3 meatballs per serving! But use that informational info as a guide!

  13. I am excited to try this tonight! One important question though, should I be using toasted sesame oil in the meatballs, or regular sesame oil? The taste and smoking points are very different, and I don’t wanna make the wrong guess! 😉

    1. It really won’t make a difference 🙂 you shouldn’t be concerned about smoking poi t since you aren’t use the oil
      To sear.

  14. I had a craving for thai and had turkey mince on hand so I searched for a thai red curry turkey meatball recipes. Yours was one of the top hits. Let me tell you, TOP hit in a taste too!!! Absolutely wonderful and as for me it’s not so easy to find a coconut milk (I live in Italy), the use of peanut butter was great in this recipe. Reminded me of satay sauce. The meatballs were as you described them, soft and juicy, just great!

  15. Made this tonight and it was so delicious! I cut the meatball recipe in half, but kept the sauce amount the same and thought the ratio was perfect. Sauce was crazy delicious. I used fresh microplaned ginger in the meatballs instead of ground. And served it with rice and roasted cabbage. Huge hit with the friends I made it for.

      1. Hi Mila,
        The flavors in this recipe are right down my alley. Quick question…. I see soy sauce listed in the ingredients for the meatballs but i don’t see it in the instructions. Please let me know

  16. This recipe was so simple and so yummy!!!! I modified a little with GF bread and used almond butter instead and it was so so tasty!! Thanks for a new meal for the rotation .

  17. Hi! I’m making these for myself for Thanksgiving since I won’t be able to spend it with family during quarantimes. 🙂 I’m allergic to peanuts; do you have a recommendation for a PB substitute to still give it the texture and thicken the sauce like you mentioned?

  18. I made a batch, substituted coconut milk for chicken broth. OMG the peanut butter definitely takes it up a level! Also, baking instead of frying = genius!

  19. Made these tonight and they were amazing. It made about 40 meatballs. I doubled the sauce since I like to have lots and it was perfect! Kids loved it too. Will be making these again for sure.

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