People ask me how I am confident enough to just make up recipes from scratch. The truth is that I love playing around. I like to think about the flavors I love when I eat at a restaurant and then I put my own spin on it or make it a paleo-friendly recipe. One type of food that I usually shy away from making is Italian food because I am afraid that I will never live up to the caliber of my dad and grandmothers Italian food. They make the BEST sauce and meatballs. Growing up we had them almost every Sunday so every once in a while I get a serious Sunday pasta craving. A few weeks ago, while I was still doing the Whole30, I tested out my own quick and simple meatball recipe. It’s not my Nana’s recipe, but these cast iron meatballs come together in less than 30 minutes and are pretty dang delicious.
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I know that a few things factor into a good meatball and I made sure to incorporate them into my cast iron meatballs. I like the outside to be a little firm and almost crisp with a super moist and flavorful inside. To make these moist, but still paleo and whole30 compliant, I avoided all dairy and used pork panko instead of bread crumbs. If you don’t want to buy pork panko, you can always just take a bag of pork rinds and process them in a food processor until a flaky powder forms.
It is super easy to make these delicious cast iron meat balls. I take my ground beef and pork (I like using both, but you can pick one or the other!) and place it in a large mixing bowl with eggs, pork panko and seasonings. Then I combine it all fully with cleanly washed hands and form into about 18 balls. Then I heat the avocado oil in a large cast iron skillet over medium heat and brown the meatballs for 2 minutes on each side. Then I immediately bake them in the oven for 18 minutes and they are good to go! I like serving these with marinara sauce over zoodles or with spaghetti squash, but they are also pretty tasty just heated up with marinara sauce and nothing else. You can keep these in the fridge for up to 4 days or store them in the freezer to keep longer. You can find the full recipe below and, as always, if you try this recipe, be sure to tag me in the photo on Instagram!