Sneaky Veggie Kid-sized Meatballs are good for adults, too! (Gluten free)

January 21, 2013

meatball recipe

I guess there are really three ways you can go when you’re trying to feed a toddler:

1. Make 1 adult meal and your kid can take it or leave it. (For my “I don’t care anymore” days)
2. Make 2 meals, one that is super kid-friendly and attractive to them and one that is healthy for us (For my give-give-give days)
3. Make 1 meal that appeals to kids and adults (For my smartest days)

Today I’m going with #3. It’s a smart day here. For you too?

Now of course you don’t need kids to make mini-meatballs. They are great snacks or even appetizers for adults. I ate a handful last night before yoga. Good hot, good cold. That’s what I call Winning at Kitchen!

Sneaky Veggie Kid-sized Meatballs
Be sure those veggies are minced very tiny so they blend into the meat!
1 Tbl. olive oil
1 big shallot, minced (or small onion)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 medium carrot, shredded then minced
1 big collard green leaf, minced (or kale, or other leafy green)
1 lb. ground beef
1 egg
1 tsp. salt

Preheat oven to 350F.

Heat oil in small pan over medium-low heat. Add shallots, cook until translucent. Add garlic, cook until golden. Add carrots and collard, cook until softened.

In a large mixing bowl, add cooked veggies to beef, egg and salt. Use your hands (aka “Italian spoons”) to fully combine ingredients.

Roll tiny meatballs the diameter of a quarter or smaller. Try to make them all about the same size. Arrange in baking dish and cook for 20-25 minutes, until browned.


Prior to serving this meal, my son hadn’t eaten any vegetables in days. He goes through phases, and I don’t worry. But picky eating gives mom a reason to get creative in the kitchen, that’s for sure. I recently wrote this article about the #1 way to turn kids into healthy eaters, if you’re looking for more on this topic.

And I’m bubbling over with happiness because Winning at Kitchen is starting in less than 2 weeks and it’s already full of amazing people who want to commit to putting real food on the table. Hell no frozen fish sticks! Say it with me! Hell no frozen fish sticks!