In search of super easy weeknight dinners, Slow-Cooker Hoisin Turkey Meatballs have jumped to the top of my list. Tender meatballs simmer slowly in a sweet and savory sauce and come in at under 300 calories per serving.
Add rice and steamed broccoli or green beans and dinner is served!
The key ingredient in the rich, sticky sauce that coats these meatballs is Hoisin sauce. Hoisin is a great pantry / fridge staple and if you’ve been reading for long, you may recognize it as a recurring favorite in our kitchen. Thick, sweet and savory, Hoisin is used in Chinese cooking and adds a ton of flavor to just about anything. I love it on salmon, pork, as a dipping sauce and as the base for saucy chicken lettuce cups.
Best of all, most grocery stores carry it in their international aisle. No need to make a trip to a specialty store.
For the turkey meatballs, you can make them yourself (I like this recipe from The Kitchn) or take a major short-cut and use pre-cooked frozen meatballs. I’ve been seriously loving Trader Joe’s turkey meatballs. If I don’t already have homemade meatballs in the freezer, I grab a bag at TJs and check one of the week’s dinners off my list.
Happy Monday from Kansas City where the temps are in the 70s and the slow-cooker is doing the heavy-lifting in the kitchen.
Slow-Cooker Hoisin Turkey Meatballs
- 1 cup Hoisin Sauce (look for this in the international aisle)
- 1/4 cup Low-Sodium Beef Stock
- 2 Tbsp Soy Sauce
- 2 Tbsp Rice Vinegar
- 1 Tbsp Toasted Sesame Oil
- 4 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1 tsp grated Ginger
- 1 1/2 lb Turkey Meatballs (use pre-cooked frozen or see note)
- 1 Tbsp White Sesame Seeds
- 2 stalks Green Onions, chopped
- White or brown rice, for serving
- Whisk together Hoisin sauce, stock, soy sauce, vinegar, sesame oil, garlic and ginger.
- NOTE: If using fresh / home-made meatballs, sear the meatballs in a non-stick pan with a bit of cooking oil until browned on all sides. (They don't need to be cooked all the way through, but searing the outside will help them to hold together while they cook.)
- Place meatballs in the bowl of a slow-cooker (if using frozen, do not defrost). Pour sauce over meatballs.
- Slow-cook meatballs on low for 4 hours for frozen meatballs / 6 hours if using fresh. In the last 30 minutes of cooking, gently stir the meatballs to coat in sauce (the meatballs will be super tender after cooking, so use a large spoon to scoop the meatballs and sauce from the bottom up to the top).
- Transfer meatballs to a serving bowl and top with sesame seeds and green onions.
- Serve meatballs over rice with steamed broccoli or green beans on the side.
Molly and Clara had their first real encounter with Sunday afternoon football this weekend. They were fascinated…for about 5 minutes.