Make-Ahead Turkey and Veggie Meatballs {Freezer Meal Recipe}
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Make-Ahead Turkey and Veggie Meatballs {Freezer Meal Recipe}

Thank you to Ragu for sponsoring today’s post and inspiring me to pass on my family traditions.

One of the things I really want to do here on the blog this year is share some of my freezer meal recipes. Freezer meals are a great way to save both time and money while making sure the meals you are serving are high quality! I will often spend a weekend working on freezer meals that will last us for a month or so (because I don't use them every night, just a few times a week). Our little tradition is that I will cook up a storm while my awesome husband does the dishes! 

Now that Aiden is old enough to start helping out in the kitchen it is truly a family activity! I am always on the lookout for new recipes, and Aiden loves to help me look through cookbooks and recipe sites. However, there are also family favorites I know I should make every time. These make-ahead Turkey & Veggie meatballs are always on the list when I get cooking! The are a big hit with both Matt and Aiden, and are healthy and convenient, too. Especially when I keep a jar of Ragu handy for dipping sauce and so I am ready to add some pasta to make it a meal.

These healthy, make-ahead meatballs with added veggies are a great way to add extra nutrition into your diet! A simple freezer meal with both lean protein and vegetables is made complete with pasta sauce for dipping!

I always include this recipe for 3 reasons:
  1. They are easy to make and don't require a bunch of pots and pans (when you are making many recipes in a day, this is extra helpful!)
  2. They are healthy and the added veggies are a bonus!
  3. They are versatile! Having these meatballs frozen is great for quick lunches or more complex dinner possibilities!

These healthy, make-ahead meatballs with added veggies are a great way to add extra nutrition into your diet! A simple freezer meal with both lean protein and vegetables is made complete with pasta sauce for dipping!

While Aiden is a good eater (usually) we could all always use more veggies in our diet! I have found that when it comes to meatballs using a grater to get the vegetables really fine is helpful. And don't forget to squeeze the moisture out of your zucchini before adding it to the mixture!


Make-Ahead Turkey & Veggie Meatballs


INGREDIENTS:
1 lb ground turkey
1/4 c. grated carrot
1/4 c. grated zucchini (squeeze to remove water)
1/4 c. finely chopped spinach
2 T Ragu pasta sauce
¼ cup plain breadcrumbs
¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 large egg
1 ½ tsp no-salt Italian seasoning
salt and pepper to taste

DIRECTONS:
Mix ingredients well, and roll into balls about the size of a golf ball. Place meatballs into mini-muffin pan, and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until cooked through. Flip the meatballs halfway through. After meatballs have cooled, flash freeze on a cookie sheet and then store frozen meatballs in a freezer bag.

These healthy, make-ahead meatballs with added veggies are a great way to add extra nutrition into your diet! A simple freezer meal with both lean protein and vegetables is made complete with pasta sauce for dipping!

Baking these meatballs in a mini-muffin tin is super handy! TIP: Depending on the fat content and quality of ground turkey, sometimes turkey meatballs tend to bake up a little soggy at first. I just throw them back in the oven on a wire rack on top of a cookie sheet for a few minutes to finish them!

These healthy, make-ahead meatballs with added veggies are a great way to add extra nutrition into your diet! A simple freezer meal with both lean protein and vegetables is made complete with pasta sauce for dipping!

Having a bag of these meatballs in the freezer is super handy because they can be served in a number of ways! Our favorite way to use them is to heat a few up in the microwave and serve them with a bowl of Ragu pasta sauce for dipping! Aiden loves when I make him this for lunch!


And of course meatballs are always good for serving covered in delicious sauce on top of spaghetti! (Are you singing the meatball song in your head now? Ha!) Or made into a meatball sub... or covered with barbecue sauce... the possibilities are endless!

These healthy, make-ahead meatballs with added veggies are a great way to add extra nutrition into your diet! A simple freezer meal with both lean protein and vegetables is made complete with pasta sauce for dipping!


 Don't forget to visit the Ragu website for recipe inspiration and more!



Do you have a favorite freezer meal recipe? Be sure to share! 


41 comments

  1. Love this Branson! And love your cute bowl! :)

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  2. These sound yummy! We usually have a good 5 freezer meals waiting for us; they're a great way to use up leftovers too. In our freezer right now I have two ham/broccoli/cheese quiches, a ham and pea mac and cheese dish, a chicken/broccoli/rice casserole, and a roast beef pot pie. We love having meatballs on hand though and I've been searching around for a new recipe. Pinning this one for later.

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  3. What a great recipe. I think its really clever to use the muffin tin to shape the meatballs. Sometimes turkey can fall apart.

    Sally @ Life Loving
    Try A New Recipe Tuesday

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  4. These look so good, Branson! What a great healthier alternative!

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  5. I love making meals ahead of time. Whenever I make meatballs, I always make extra to freeze :)

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  6. This looks so easy and yummy! Can't wait to try it!

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  7. I've never used ground turkey but these look yummy!

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  8. This looks really good even though I have never used ground turkey. I might have to give this one a try.

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  9. We're lucky in that our mother-in-law always makes meatballs for the entire extended family and delivers them frozen! We know that will end someday, so need to have recipes like this on hand for that day.

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  10. My goal is to make more freezer friendly meals this year. It really is such a time saver!

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  11. It is great that you have included veggie to make it a well balanced meal. I would replace the meat with Quorn for myself.

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  12. Love that you used a little muffin pan to cook these! Great tip to stop them rolling around onto the floor!

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  13. I'm going to start making my own meatballs versus buying them - this is the second simple recipe for meatballs I've read this week! Thanks for the inspiration!

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  14. I love this! My husband and I have committed to eating better this year and that requires more time and effort. Any way I can make ahead and include the family makes me very happy. Using turkey instead of beef is a great healthy exchange.
    Have a great 2016!
    :-)
    Traci

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  15. Definitely saving this one! We're going to try out the whole freezer meal thing after our next Sam's Club run and I think this would be a great contender for us. Thanks for sharing!

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  16. Oh my gosh, this looks so yummy! I love to make meals ahead, and we constantly use Ragu sauce!

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  17. Delicious!! Making ahead of time is so great !!

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  18. I love make ahead recipes! A great way to sneak in some extra veggies too!

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  19. First of all, super cute bowl lol. Second, this sounds yummy! I love that you put them in a little muffin tin!

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  20. I absolutely love anything that I can make a head. I feed my family and my parents as well, so make ahead is SO nice.

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  21. This is such a great idea. Thanks for the tip. I will make this soon.

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  22. Yum! These look great, and I love how you added extra veggies to them. I'm all about freezer meals, so these are perfect. Thanks!

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  23. These look and sound amazing! Pinned the recipe so that I can try it out sometime!

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  24. You know, I am a vegetarian and always find it annoying that I cannot find good vegetarian meatballs at restaurants. And somehow I never tried to make them at home, but you just inspired me to make my own now :) Thanks for sharing!

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  25. These look so good!! You've inspired me to make this for my family!!!

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  26. This sounds simple and tasty. I have pinned for later :-)

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  27. I'm not a huge fan of meatballs but these look delicious!

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  28. I LOVE meatballs but have never made them! Yum!

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  29. Meatballs are a favorite for my boys, too. We always make a HUGE batch at once so we can freeze most of them and enjoy on the run.

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  30. Oh that looks so yummy! Course I love anything that's freezer meal friendly. lol.

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  31. Sounds delish! I love turkey meatballs!

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  32. This sounds really, really tasty! I love making food ahead of time and freezing it! Saves so much hassle! <3

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  33. I'm a big fan of make ahead meals. Weekly meal prep every Sunday :)

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  34. These look so good! I love the idea of making in a muffin tin, so smart!

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  35. Thank you so much for sharing this, I'm always looking for good make ahead recipes! And I love that I can easily make this gluten free with just switching out the breadcumbs!

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  36. I have never made turkey balls. I like the idea that you added grated carrots and that you used a muffin tin

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  37. This is a great idea! I don't often make meatballs, and totally forgot that you could put lots of veggies in them. I tend to make a lot of green smoothies/green juice for my kids to get their veggies, but they would definitely enjoy this one as well!

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  38. These really look delicious and Healthy! I am definitely going to add turkey meatballs to my list of freezer meals! I usually make beef ones, but your recipe looks so healthy! Thank you!

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  39. Looks like a good way to make a tasty dinner, and a great way to add a little more veggies for my five year old.

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  40. Oh my - pinning these for later! I've never really made or eaten meatballs but these are filled with things I love so I'm thinking I'd love them! Thanks for sharing. :)

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