Easy Eggless Turkey Meatballs Recipe (2024)

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By: Oriana Romero/Published: /26 Comments

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These Easy Eggless Turkey Meatballs are juicy, tender, and full of flavor. They’re quick to put together. A delicious dinner that is ready in a flash and the whole family will love.

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Easy Eggless Turkey Meatballs Recipe (4)

Table of Contents hide

1.Eggless Turkey Meatballs Recipe Highlights

2.Make Meatballs Without Eggs

3.How to Bind Meatballs without Eggs

4.My Go-To Eggless Binder For Meatballs

6.Overview: How To Make Eggless Turkey and Spinach Meatballs Step-by-Step

7.Recipe Tips

10.Frequently Asked Questions

11.More Recipes You’ll Love!

12.Recipe Card 📖

13.Easy Eggless Turkey Meatballs

Eggless Turkey Meatballs Recipe Highlights

My kids love, love, love meatballs. Any kind of meatballs! But making meatballs without eggs is quite challenging. They end up too dry and hard or too fragile and break when cooking. So let me tell you that I have been testing and re-testing this recipe for quite some time, and I finally nailed it!

These Eggless Turkey and Spinach Meatballs are easy to make, quick, and bursting with yummy flavor.In other words … they’re so good!

The thing I love about meatballs is that they’re so versatile. You can make them with pork, turkey, chicken, or beef. These meatballs are perfect over rice, some mashed potatoes, and of course, some noodles.

Our family loves meatballs, and they make such a dinner. Try these Easy Instant Pot Stroganoff Meatballs or Instant Pot Teriyaki Turkey Meatballs if you want to change things up!

Easy Eggless Turkey Meatballs Recipe (5)

Make Meatballs Without Eggs

When making egg-free meatballs, it is important to use a good binder and the right meat. Use ground meat that is no leaner than 85 percent. The fat in the meat combined with thestarchybinder will help create a moist that holds them together.

How to Bind Meatballs without Eggs

There are several options to substitute eggs in meatballs recipe:

  • 2 tablespoons buttermilkper egg.
  • 2 tablespoonsof plain yogurt per egg.
  • 1/4 cup ricotta cheese per egg.
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened apple sauce per egg.

Of course, you will also need a starchy component, such as bread crumbs or saltine crackers crumbs.

My Go-To Eggless Binder For Meatballs

Here is the equation I follow to make my eggless meatballs.

1 pound meat = 1 slice of sandwich bread (crushed into fine crumbs) + 2 tablespoons plain yogurt, or 6 saltines crackers (crushed into fine crumbs)+ 2 tablespoons plain yogurt.

Ingredients You’ll Need, Substitutions & Notes

Amounts are included in the printable recipe below (scroll down).You’ll need:

  • Buttermilk or plain yogurt
  • Breadcrumbs: I like to use a slice of sandwich bread or saltine crackers. I put them into my food processor and crush them into fine crumbs.
  • Veggies: You’ll need onion and garlic.
  • Seasoning and herbs: You’ll need dried oregano, salt, and black pepper.
  • Spinach: This is totally optional. As usual, I didn’t waste the opportunity to hide/camouflage some veggies to add an extra bit of wonderfulness to these meatballs. This time was spinach, but I’ve added red pepper or baby kale other times.
  • Parmesan cheese: Freshly grated parmesan cheese will give you the best flavor.
  • Ground turkey: I typically use 85% lean ground beef. It’s not overly greasy, while still containing enough fat to make the meatballs moist and juicy. You could also use half turkey and half ground pork or Italian sausage.
  • Oil: Any oil you have handy will work for this recipe. I use extra-virgin olive oil.
  • Marinara sauce: You can use homemade or store-bought. When I am short of time, my favorite store-bought marinara sauce is Rao’s Homemade Marinara Sauce.
  • Fresh basil or parsley to garnish.
Easy Eggless Turkey Meatballs Recipe (6)

Overview: How To Make Eggless Turkey and Spinach Meatballs Step-by-Step

Detailed instructions are included in the printable recipe below (scroll down).

  1. Make the Meat Mixture

    In a medium bowl, combine buttermilk, crushed bread (or crackers), onion, oregano, garlic, spinach, salt, pepper, and parmesan. Add ground turkey; mix well. Using fingers, gently mix all the ingredients until thoroughly combined

  2. Form u0026 Brown

    Form into 1 1/2-inch balls. Heat the oil in a heavy large frying pan over medium-high heat. Brown the meatballs until browned on all sides, about 5 minutes.

  3. Add Sauce u0026 Cook

    Add the marinara sauce. Reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer until meatballs are cooked, about 20 to 25 minutes, or until they reach 165°F in the middle on an instant-read thermometer. Taste and adjust seasoning, adding more salt and pepper, if necessary. Serve with mashed potatoes, rice, or pasta.

Easy Eggless Turkey Meatballs Recipe (7)

Recipe Tips

Do not over-mix the meatballs. When you over-mix the filling, you end up with dense meatballs.

This recipe can be doubled for larger crowds.

To crush the bread/crackers, I use a mini food processor.

You can substitute ground turkey for ground pork, beef, or a mix of meats.

A cookie scoop can help portion out the meatballs easily.

Storing & Freezing Instructions

Here are tips and tricks on how you can store your eggless meatballs.

Leftovers

If you have leftover meatballs, store them in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 to 4 days. Then, reheat the meatballs in a pan or microwave until heated through.

Freezer

Uncooked meatballs: prepare the meat mixture, form meatballs, place them on a baking sheet lined with wax paper, and then put them in the freezer. Leave them in for 30 – 60 minutes. Then transfer them into a Ziploc freezer bag and store them in the freezer for up to 2 months.

Cooked meatballs: prepare the meat mixture, form meatballs,and cook them as directed in the recipe. Then, let them cool completely, put them in a freezer-safe container and freeze for up to 2 months. When you are ready to eat, let them thaw in the refrigerator and heat them as needed. Then, you can reheat them on the stovetop, microwave, or oven.

Make Ahead Meatballs

Eggless Meatballs can be shaped and kept covered in the refrigerator for up to a day ahead.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why do my eggless meatballs fall apart?

When meatballs fall apart, it’s usually the binder problem. Too much or too little bread crumbs and/or buttermilk/yogurt can make them loose. Also, if the meat that you are using is too lean (leaner than 85%), this may increase the chance that your egg-free meatballs fall apart.

What can I use instead of eggs to bind meatballs?

There are several options to substitute eggs in a meatball recipe: 2 tablespoons of buttermilk per egg, 3 tablespoons of plain yogurt per egg, 1/4 cup ricotta cheese per egg, or 3 tablespoons unsweetened apple sauce per egg. Of course, you will also need a starchy component, such as bread crumbs or saltine crackers crumbs.

Will meatballs stay together without eggs?

Absolutely! The key is that you use the combination of the right ingredients. You can also take an extra step and lightly roll the meatballs in plain flour before frying.

Can I use flour to bind meatballs?

While rolling the meatballs in flour provides a golden-brown exterior and helps them to prevent them from falling apart, you will also need to add a binder to the meat mixture. See meatballs binder ideas above.

What is a good binder instead of an egg?

My favorite binder for meatballs is 1 slice of sandwich bread (crushed into fine crumbs) + 2 tablespoons of plain yogurt per 1 pound of meat.

Can I bake meatballs instead of frying them?

Absolutely! You can bake meatballs on a baking sheet in a 400°F (200º C) oven for 15 – 18 minutes, or until no longer pink in the middle. Turning halfway through, so they brown evenly.

Easy Eggless Turkey Meatballs Recipe (8)

More Recipes You’ll Love!

  • Instant Pot Teriyaki Turkey Meatballs
  • Easy Greek Chicken Meatballs (Baked – No Eggs)
  • Easy Instant Pot Stroganoff Meatballs
  • BEST Eggless Italian Meatballs
  • Browse more recipes…

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Recipe Card 📖

Easy Eggless Turkey Meatballs Recipe (9)

Easy Eggless Turkey Meatballs

Easy Eggless Turkey Meatballs Recipe (10)Oriana Romero

These Easy Eggless Turkey Meatballs are very juicy, tender, and packed full of flavor. They're quick to put together. A delicious dinner that is ready in a flash and the whole family will love.

4.68 from 46 votes

Print Recipe Pin Recipe

Prep Time 10 minutes mins

Cook Time 20 minutes mins

Total Time 30 minutes mins

Servings 12 meatballs

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons (30 ml) buttermilk or plain yogurt
  • 1 slice sandwich bread ( or 6 saltine crackers), crushed into fine crumbs (see notes)
  • 1/2 cup onion, grated
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup (140 g approx) chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, finely grated (see notes)
  • 1 pound (450 g) ground turkey (no leaner than 85%)
  • 2 – 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 – 2 cups (360 – 480 g) jarred marinara sauce
  • 1 tablespoon snipped fresh basil to garnish (optional)

Instructions

  • In a medium bowl, combine buttermilk, bread crumbs (or crackers), onion, oregano, garlic, spinach (if using), salt, pepper, and parmesan. Mix until well combined.

  • Add ground turkey; mix well. Use your hands to mix the buttermilk mixture into the ground meat thoroughly. Try not to overwork the meat; pinch the meat between your fingers rather than knead it.

  • Form the meat mixture into 1 1/2-inch balls, about 1.5 tablespoons each. Tip: Use a cookie scoop to make the meatballs equal in size. This will ensure they all cook the same.

  • Heat the oil in a heavy large frying pan over medium-high heat. Brown the meatballs until browned on all sides, about 5 minutes. Tip: Alternatively, you can also bake the meatballs in a 400°F (200º C) oven for 15 – 18 minutes, or until no longer pink in the middle. Turn halfway through, so the bottoms don't brown.

  • Add the marinara sauce to the frying pan. Reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer until meatballs are cooked, about 20 -25 minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning, adding more salt and pepper, if necessary.

  • Garnish with fresh basil, if desired. Serve with mashed potatoes, rice, or pasta.

Oriana’s Notes

BREADCRUMBS: I personally prefer to crush a slice of sandwich bread into fine crumbs in my food processor. You can also crush 6 saltines crackers. In my opinion, these two options work 10x better than store-bought breadcrumbs. If sandwich bread or saltine crackers are not available, you can use 1/4 cup of store-bought breadcrumbs.

PARMESAN CHEESE: Most fresh Parmesan cheeses contain lysozyme from egg whites, which accelerates ripening and prevents the growth of bacteria. Make sure to read the label to check that the cheese you are using is egg-free. You can also use Pecorino.

MAKE-AHEAD: Eggless Meatballs can be shaped and kept covered in the refrigerator for up to a day ahead.

STORE: If you have leftover meatballs, store them in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 to 4 days. Then, reheat the meatballs in a pan or microwave until heated through.

FREEZE MEATBALLS:

  • Uncooked meatballs: prepare the meat mixture, form meatballs, place them on a baking sheet lined with wax paper, and then put them in the freezer. Leave them in for 30 – 60 minutes. Then transfer them into a Ziploc freezer bag and store them in the freezer for up to 2 months.
  • Cooked meatballs: prepare the meat mixture, form meatballs, and cook them as directed in the recipe. Then, let them cool completely, put them in a freezer-safe container, and freeze for up to 2 months. When you are ready to eat, let them thaw in the refrigerator and heat them as needed. Then, you can reheat them on the stovetop, microwave, or oven.

QUICK TIPS:

  • When making meatballs without eggs is important to use a good binder and the right meat. Use ground beef that is no leaner than 85 percent. The fat in the meat combined with the starchy binder will help create a moist that holds it together.
  • The key to light, juicy meatballs is DON’T OVERMIX! Overworking the mixture can lead to dense meatballs.
  • This recipe can be doubled for larger crowds.
  • To crush the bread/crackers, I use a mini food processor.
  • You can substitute ground turkey for ground pork, ground beef, or a mix of them.
  • A cookie scoop can help portion out the meatballs easily.

If you’re making this recipe, please read the whole post content to get lots of tips, tricks, variations, and frequently asked questions.

Did you make this recipe? Don’t forget to give it a star rating below!

Please note that nutritional information is a rough estimate, and it can vary depending on the products used.

Nutrition

Calories: 104kcalCarbohydrates: 7gProtein: 12gFat: 4gSaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 23mgSodium: 497mgPotassium: 406mgFiber: 2gSugar: 4gVitamin A: 1870IUVitamin C: 6.4mgCalcium: 64mgIron: 1.4mg

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Course Main Course

Cuisine Italian

Calories 104

Keyword dinner easy eggfree Eggless meatballs

This recipe was originally published in January 2015. The recipe remains the same, but more notes, tips, photos, and information were added to the post in February 2023 to make it as helpful as possible!

Welcome to my eggless kitchen!

Easy Eggless Turkey Meatballs Recipe (11)Thanks for stopping by! I’m Oriana, a wife, mom to three wonderful kids, and a passionate baker and cooker of all eggless things delicious. My goal is to give you the confidence and knowledge to cook and bake without eggs while providing quality recipes that your whole family will love. I’m really happy that you’re here, so take a seat and have fun exploring! Read More…

Easy Eggless Turkey Meatballs Recipe (2024)

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