A Dash of Healthy: Turkey Meatballs, Tomato Sauce and Zoodles!

There’s nothing more comforting to come home to at night than a big bowl of pasta with tomato sauce. In fact, in the winter time the flavors I crave most are rich, savory ones — and tomato sauce is one of the easiest ways to get that first bite moment of bliss that just warms you to your core.

The only issue is that pasta tends to turn on you a few hours later — you feel bloated, heavy, and lazy. What’s worse than regretting an amazing meal later? It can ruin your whole day! Well, this week, we’ve taken a new angle on the classic spaghetti and meatballs and made them gluten-free and carb-free. The meatballs are made of turkey, so it’s only 220 calories for 4 of them, and the noodles are made from spiralized zucchini. It’s a truly guilt-free meal.

But wait, what is a spiralizer? A spiralizer is a hand-held tool that you can rake against really any vegetable to make long, thin strips. It’s relatively easy to use, and cheap, too! You can buy it amazon. It makes zoodles quickly, and though the strips are thin, they’re the texture of an angel hair pasta, so you won’t be missing any texture you would get with pasta. But, be careful! These tools are sharp and if you’re moving too quickly they definitely have the potential to do some real damage.

Anyway..on to the recipes!


What you’ll need:

1 large mixing bowl
1 large pot for the sauce

For the meatballs:
1 lb. 99% lean turkey meat
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 egg
1 garlic clove, minced

For the sauce:
2 28 oz. cans crushed tomatoes
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 small onion, chopped
1 bay leaf
1 tsp oregano
1 handful fresh basil
1 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

For the zoodles:
2 zucchini


What to do:

1. Start by making the pasta sauce. You’ll cook the meatballs in it later. Mince the 2 garlic cloves and place them in the pot on medium heat with the olive oil. Once they are golden, add the onion and let sit for 1-2 minutes until the onion is fragrant.

2. Add the 2 cans of tomatoes, the bay leaf and oregano. Slice the basil leaves into thin pieces and add.

3. Let simmer while you make the meatballs.

4. To make the meatballs, place the turkey, egg, cheese, and minced garlic in the bowl and mix roughly with your hands. The meat will be a little bit sticky, but you just want to combine all of the ingredients into a uniform mixture.

5. Begin making golf ball-sized balls and setting them aside.

6. Once you’ve used up all of the meatball meat, place them one at a time into the sauce and cover. Wait 15 minutes and turn them to coat them in the sauce and allow the other side of the meatballs to cook.

7. Check again in another 15 minutes. Cut open one of the meatballs to ensure that the center is opaque and cooked.


For the zoodles:

8. While your meatballs are cooking, take your hand-held spiralizer and rake it against your washed zucchini. This should make enough for around 4 servings of zoodles, depending on how deep into the pith of the zucchini you go–after a point the noodles begin to have less structure and become too pithy, so keep your eye on that.


9. Act like you’re peeling a carrot, and move the spiralizer along the zucchini in a motion away from you. Work around the vegetable so that you get the most out of your zucchini.

10. Put the desired amount of zoodles on a plate and microwave for 45 seconds. The zoodles should be cooked through but not mushy.

11. Finally, when the meatballs are done, add the desired amount of meatballs and sauce to the zoodles and you’re ready to eat!

12. You can save leftover uncooked zoodles in the fridge for around 5 days in a Ziploc bag, so this meal is not only tasty, but great for a college student trying to get a quick, healthy meal during the week!



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