Healthy Recipe: Meatballs!

By Caitlin Quinn, BU Dietetic Intern

I prepared this basic meatball recipe in our Healthy Cooking on a Budget class.  Who says all beef is bad?  This meatball recipe uses 93% lean beef and fresh vegetables and quinoa for added flavor and fiber!  This recipe is quick and easy but versatile as well.  If you’re looking for a twist on a meatball sub try adding a chopped jalapeño and some chili powder.  The flavor possibilities are endless when using the meatball base and they freeze well too!


Basic Meatballs


½ lb 93-96% lean ground beef
1/4 cup cooked quinoa
1 clove of garlic minced
1/2 green bell pepper diced
1/2 onion diced
¼ cup whole wheat bread crumbs
1 egg
2 Tbsp grated parmesan cheese
¼ tsp black pepper
¼ cup parmesan cheese
Non stick cooking spray


1.       Cook quinoa according to directions on package.

2.       While quinoa is cooking preheat oven to 350°F and mince garlic, pepper and onion.

3.       In a large bowl mix beef, quinoa, pepper, onion, garlic, bread crumbs, egg, cheese, and black pepper.  Combine using a potato masher or clean hands.

4.       Spray a large cookie sheet with cooking spray and form 1-2” meatballs using hands or melon scoop.  Place in oven for 25-30 minutes.

5.       While meatballs are cooking heat tomato sauce in a medium sauce pan and add meatballs to sauce when cooked.  Simmer for 2-3 minutes before serving.

NUTRITION FACTS (3 meatballs)

Calories 210
Fat 6 g
Saturated Fat 1.5 g
Protein 17 g
Carbohydrate 20 g
Fiber 4 g
Sodium 470 mg



Monkey's Mommy posted on November 28, 2011 at 12:24 am

Couldn’t agree more, well written article.

Beats by Dre Studio posted on January 9, 2012 at 7:36 pm

You’ve made some clear points there. I looked on-line for any issue and located nearly everybody will approve with the blog.

Ayfiel posted on February 1, 2012 at 3:59 am

Very nice and clear recipe. A very complete and orderly guidance to cook. I think it is very helpful for readers who want to try making meatball at home. thank you
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Tammy Graves posted on March 27, 2024 at 2:56 am

Sounds delicious and nutritious! Using quinoa and fresh veggies is a great way to boost fiber and flavor.  when you want to know about the learning differences in the contrasting terms watch out for the difference between.

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