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Porcupine Meatballs
with potatoes / green beans

Active: 45 minTotal: 45 min

These "porcupine" meatballs get their name from the cooked rice that is folded into the mixture and pokes out a bit after cooking. Ricotta lends moisture to the meatballs.
Smarts: If you’d like tomato sauce for dipping Thursday’s calzones, double the recipe below and set half aside for Thurs.

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Ingredients

Servings:
4
Metric
Tomato Sauce with Garlic and Thyme:
  • Shallots - 1 bulb, diced
  • Garlic - 2 cloves, chopped
  • Thyme leaves - 1 tsp, leaves torn
  • Oil, olive - 1 Tbsp
  • Paprika - 1/4 tsp
  • Tomatoes, crushed (28 oz / 794 g) - 1 can
Porcupine Meatballs:
  • Beef, ground - 1 lb
  • Cheese, ricotta - 1/4 cup
  • Panko breadcrumbs - 1/4 cup
  • Eggs - 1
  • Salt - 1/2 tsp
  • Oregano, dried - 1/2 tsp
  • Black pepper - 1/4 tsp
  • Cooked rice (leftover from Monday) - 1 cup
  • Oil, cooking - 1 Tbsp
Boiled Potatoes and Green Beans:
  • Green beans, fresh or frozen - 12 oz, chopped into 1” / 2.5 cm pieces
  • Potatoes, baby red or yellow - 1 lb, halved
  • Butter - 1 Tbsp

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size: 1 serving
Servings Per Recipe 4
Amount Per Serving
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% Daily Value
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Prep

  1. Green beans / Shallots / Garlic / Thyme - Prep as directed. Store green beans and shallots in their own containers. Combine garlic and thyme in another container. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
  2. Make tomato sauce - (If prepping right before cooking, get water for potatoes / green beans boiling before continuing with prep.) Heat a saucepan with olive oil over medium heat. Add shallots and saute until soft, 2 to 3 minutes. Add garlic, thyme, and paprika and saute for 1 minute. Pour tomatoes over top and simmer for 5 minutes. Season with some salt and pepper. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
  3. Form meatballs - Combine beef, cheese, panko, eggs, salt, oregano, black pepper, and cooked rice. Form into 1” / 2.5 cm wide meatballs. You should have ~4 meatballs per serving. (Can be done 1 day ahead)
  4. Potatoes - Slice potatoes in half. Soak in water if not using right away.

Make

  1. Place potatoes into a stock pot and cover with cold water and some salt. Cover and bring to a boil. Simmer uncovered for 10 minutes.
  2. Add green beans and continue simmering potatoes and green beans together until potatoes can be easily pierced with a fork, 4 to 6 minutes more.
  3. Drain and let sit in a colander for ~5 minutes to let the steam escape (this creates creamier potatoes vs. liquidy potatoes).
  4. Meanwhile, heat a skillet with cooking oil over medium-high heat. Add meatballs and saute on all sides until golden brown, 4 to 5 minutes.
  5. Pour tomato sauce (reserve half if you doubled it for Thursday) around meatballs and cover. Cook, covered, until meatballs are cooked through, 12 to 15 minutes.
  6. Toss potatoes and green beans with butter. Season generously with some salt and pepper.
  7. Serve meatballs and sauce with potatoes and green beans on the side. Enjoy!

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Reviews

This meal has 35 reviews

Liked this a lot. I didn’t think the meatballs and sauce would fit in my skillet, so I made the sauce in my Dutch oven and transferred the meatballs to the sauce after browning them. I like my meatballs extra brown; I think this helped keep them together in the sauce. I did have a lot of loose (burnt) rice in the skillet, but his wasn’t a big deal since I wasn’t adding the sauce to that pan. To simplify things, I skipped the potatoes and steamed green beans in the microwave. Still very satisfying.

By: Danielle
Posted: Nov 16, 2018
Diet: Original

Fine but not fantastic. Tried to make it a bean sauce instead of tomato based and it was a bit dry. Added some potatoes into the cauliflower/bean mix because my family loves them...

By: Shawn
Posted: Nov 16, 2018
Diet: Paleo

This is one of those meals that I thought was good the first time around but thought the leftovers were great. I think the longer the meatballs sit in the sauce, the better they are. I really like the side too. It's simple but great.

By: Chelsea
Posted: Nov 16, 2018
Diet: Original

I really liked this, and I was able to prep it during the day so it came together easily. Plus, my 1 year old ate all of it, even the green beans!

By: Kera
Posted: Nov 15, 2018
Diet: Original

The meatballs did come apart during the process. Maybe adding more panko next time to firm them up a little more. Otherwise great dish!

By: justen
Posted: Nov 13, 2018
Diet: Original

We really enjoyed this dish! We eat keto, so I left out the rice and potatoes, and swapped the breadcrumbs for crushed pork rinds. I wish I had doubled the sauce because it was delicious!

By: Stephanie
Posted: Nov 12, 2018
Diet: Gluten-free