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Asian Turkey Meatballs

If you’re looking for some favorable but light meat dish, these Asian-inspired Turkey Meatballs just might do the trick.

Asian Turkey Meatballs


Asian Turkey Meatballs

Simple turkey meatballs with an Asian flair.
Servings 6 servings


  • 1 pound turkey breast, ground
  • 1/2 cup white onion, finely chopped
  • 3/4 cup bread crumbs
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup plum sauce, heated
  • 2 scallions, finely sliced
  • 1 teaspoon sesame seeds


  • Place the turkey, onion, bread crumbs, eggs, garlic powder, salt, and black pepper in a large bowl.
  • Using your hands, knead all the ingredients together until well blended.
  • If the mixture doesn't hold together, add a bit more bread crumbs.
  • Make 18 meatballs approximately the same size.
  • In a large skillet, heat the olive oil to a medium temperature.
  • Add the meatballs and stir until brown on all sides.
  • Cover and allow them to simmer for 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Place the meatballs on a platter and top with the plum sauce, scallions, and sesame seeds.
  • Serve at once with noodles or brown rice.

How do turkey meatballs differ from beef meatballs?

The biggest difference between turkey meatballs and beef meatballs is the flavor. On its own, beef is simply more flavorful than turkey. However, because turkey has a more mild flavor profile, it can take on the flavor of the herbs and spices you mix with it, something that beef doesn’t do as well.

In addition, ground beef is higher in protein, iron and potassium than ground turkey does.

So why go with turkey meatballs if beef has tastes bolder and more distinctive and has more protein per serving?

The answer is the fat. Ground turkey has lower levels of saturated fat, which is linked to heart disease. However, if you want to get that benefit, you have to purchase a LEAN ground turkey or ground turkey breast meat.

Creative Cooking Tips Banner

As with all recipes, you can play around with this one to make it unique, fresh, and very much your own. Here are some ideas:

Play around with the ground meat: You can switch out with another meat, such as ground chicken, beef, pork, or even lamb. Or, you can blend more than one kind of ground meat, creating a hybrid meatball.

Instead of regular bread crumbs, use panko breadcrumbs, or crushed crackers.

Pump up the Asian flavor with some Chinese, Japanese, Thai or other Asian herb and spice blend you find in the grocery store. Here are some suggestions you can find on Amazon:

Of course, if you switch up the seasonings, you may also have to switch out the sauce. Plum sauce may not taste as good with some of these blends. Other Asian-style sauces you can try include:

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About the author

Carma Spence has been experimenting in the kitchen since she was four years old and loves trying out new recipe ideas. She is the author of Bonkers for Bundt Cakes and Your Perfect Pie, as well as author and contributor to several more non-food-related books. With Carma's Cookery, she is taking her passion for empowering people and blending it with her passion for cooking, gift-giving and entertaining.

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