Beef, Quinoa and Feta Meatballs – Ground Round Goodness

Beefy Quinoa Meatballs

On top of spaghetti or even nestled in a lettuce wrap, meatballs are a mainstay in my weeknight dinner rotation – the kids love them and so do I!  In fact, there is usually a stampede to kitchen to see who can get served first! These spherical mounds of ground meat goodness can be made from just about anything, but I like to use ground beef – preferably a 90/10 ground sirloin to keep them a bit leaner yet still offer loads of satisfying flavor.

Beef Quinoa Meatballs

I’m expecting a stampede to the dinner table with this beef meatball recipe!

Today, I have a deliciously nutritious recipe for you — Beefy Quinoa Feta Meatballs in Lettuce Wraps. Yup, that’s right – instead of bread crumbs or another filler, I’ve added quinoa to act as the binder in these yummy meatballs – this little swaperoo makes them ideal for folks following gluten-free, Paleo or low carb diets.  Quinoa, an edible seed that is a good source of nutrients including fiber, iron, magnesium, folate and heart-healthy omega 3s, is also considered a complete protein in itself with all the requisite amino acids. What a dynamic duo – a double punch of protein thanks to beef and quinoa, both superfoods!

Beef Quinoa Feta Meatballs

Not only to you kick up the protein with this beef quinoa meatball recipe, it also helps to stretch your food budget – adding the cup of cooked quinoa to ground beef lets you roll up a few more meatballs for hardly any more money (meaning, you can buy that better sirloin grind). And, in my family, more meatballs more happy boys and less arguing over who gets second servings.

Beef Quinoa Meatball Lettuce Wraps

You could serve these Beefy Quinoa Feta Meatballs  over the pasta of your choice or even a sub sandwich. I personally love them wrapped up in “bowls” of Bibb lettuce and drizzled with a tangy Greek yogurt dressing like a tzatzikis sauce – for convenience try OPA by Litehouse™ Feta Dill for the perfect lower-cal pairing.

Lil Critters Beef Meatball Bento BoxAlso, a fun kid-friendly idea for quickly-approaching October lunchbox duty — ‘Lil Critters Beef Meatball Bento Box. I made this happy monster meal in a post on ways to beef up a bag lunch for BeefLovingTexans.com — please visit to see the other ideas!

How would you serve these meatballs? Have you ever used quinoa for anything other than a side dish? Please share in the comments below — XOXO, Jennifer

 

 

 

 

Beef Quinoa Feta Meatballs
Beef Quinoa Feta Meatballs
Print Recipe
Create a hearty meal that will please the whole family. These meatballs are packed with wholesome, nutritious ingredients like lean ground beef and quinoa and can be served over pasta or in lettuce leaves.
Servings Prep Time
6 servings (24 mini meatballs) 10 minutes
Cook Time
18 minutes
Servings Prep Time
6 servings (24 mini meatballs) 10 minutes
Cook Time
18 minutes
Beef Quinoa Feta Meatballs
Beef Quinoa Feta Meatballs
Print Recipe
Create a hearty meal that will please the whole family. These meatballs are packed with wholesome, nutritious ingredients like lean ground beef and quinoa and can be served over pasta or in lettuce leaves.
Servings Prep Time
6 servings (24 mini meatballs) 10 minutes
Cook Time
18 minutes
Servings Prep Time
6 servings (24 mini meatballs) 10 minutes
Cook Time
18 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: servings (24 mini meatballs)
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a large baking sheet with foil and spray with cooking spray; set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together cooked quinoa, ground beef, cheese, parseley, salt and peppers until well combined. Using hands or a melon-baller, shape into 24 balls and transfer to the prepared baking sheet.
  3. Roast in oven until cooked through and golden brown, 15 to 18 minutes (internal temperature should reach 165 F degrees).
  4. Serve as desired -- in lettuce leaves, with pasta or in a sandwich are some ideas to get you started!
Share this Recipe
Powered byWP Ultimate Recipe

Med Ball Workout + New Favorite Protein Bar #BUPbars

Yoga and Thinking Bup Bars - TheFitFork.comSome of the things I like best about exercising — the physical and mental challenge, the variety of workouts available (yet also the ritual of doing them), the endorphin rush, meeting short-term goals while safeguarding my health for the long haul, and the sweaty satisfying soreness following a tough session, the relaxing and winding down. That being said, I also look forward to the food fuel I need to top off my tank and keep my engine running properly.

Aside from the occasional cheat, I eat a higher-protein, lower carb diet. Although, I’ve never had a weight issue, I really noticed a change in my lean-to-fat ratio when making these tweaks – suddenly I had visible abs, back muscles and more without a change on the scale. I’ve even blogged about eating a higher protein, higher fat diet for marathon nutrition while embracing the need for some carbs for loading and recovery. For my active lifestyle, I aim to eat about 20-25 grams of protein at each of three meals and one to two snacks.  Research has shown that incorporating protein into diet can help build lean muscle and boost the metabolism to more efficiently burn fat. Also, more protein in the morning has been shown to reduce junk food snacking later in the day

B-Up Bars Trial Offer

Anyway, it’s hard to pass up the opportunity to try a new protein bar – I’m definitely a protein junkie. So, I was thrilled to give B-Up Bars a test and was hoping they’d stand up to my non-negotiables in a bar (higher protein, lower carb, reasonable calories, taste). These soft bars (think nougaty marshmallow texture) each have 20g protein and 18-20g fiber, just 2-3g of sugar and 4-5g of net carbs, and come in six crazy-delicious flavors — Peanut Butter, Vanilla Peanut Butter, PB&J, Sugar Cookie, Cinnamon Roll, and Chocolate Mint. In addition to the higher protein profile, I also appreciate how B-Up Bars are made with no artificial flavors, sweeteners, or preservatives and are low sodium and gluten free. B-Up Bars also feature a plant-based fiber to offset carb intake.  Be Healthy. Be Better. B-Up.

b-up bars 1If you like indulgent snacks that are actually good for you and make a convenient breakfast on the go or snack to stash in your gym bag, head over to B-Up Bars at  http://yupbrands.com/bupbar/ for one of two great offers.

 

  1. Discount Code YUP29 for 12% discount on box orders on yupbrands.com + FREE shipping (not valid on 6-pack trial).
  2. Discount Code YUPTRIAL for $13.99 six bar (6 flavor) Trial Pack (reg. price $17.49) plus FREE shipping.

I’m also sharing with you the Medicine Ball Workout I did yesterday (before I at my chocolate mint B-Up Bar)! I really enjoy exercising with a full-body med ball routine – compared to gym machines, it makes working out old-school easier yet tougher at the same time! Try out my Med Ball Workout, it’s perfect for improving explosive power, increasing strength and endurance and improving overall functional fitness – and all you need is a ball!

Med Ball Workout - TheFitfork.com

Wall Ball – Stand facing wall, hold ball close to chest.  Lower into a partial squat and propel ball upward as far as possible, catch at chest on the way down while lowering into a squat.

Med Ball V-Ups – Lay on back, extend arms over head to rest on floor while holding ball. Engaging core, raise up arms and legs at the same time to meet in alignment above hips. Slowly lower to start position.

Med Ball Slams – Standing upright, hold med ball high overhead with both hands and throw to the floor with force, squatting down slightly. Catch ball on the bounce up and return the start position.

Med Ball Plank – Rest on forearms and place feet on medicine ball. Engage core and keep body position as straight as possible. Hold for designated time without breaking form.

Med Ball Jump Squats – Standing upright with feet shoulder-width apart, lower into squat position holding ball. Explosively jump upward keeping ball at chest.

Med Ball Wood Chop – Hold ball in both hands and stand with feet shoulder-width apart, knees slightly bent. Drop down slightly, moving the ball near right, then drive up through feet, swinging the ball up and across your body to the opposing side. Swing back down to start position.

And, if you are looking for an extra challenging med ball exercise, give this headstand med ball pick up a try. Oooh, it worked all the large and small group muscles of my body in my constant pursuit of keeping balance.

Do you eat protein bars?  Describe your dream flavor! What is your favorite med ball exercise?

This post was sponsored by B-Up bars / YUP brands. However, however they did not tell me what to say or how to say it — all comments and opinions are my own.