Mediterranean Meatballs

mediterranean-meatballs Photo: Romulo Yanes


  • 1/4 cup whole-wheat panko bread crumbs
  • 2 pounds lean (94%) ground sirloin
  • 2 scallions, finely chopped (1/4 cup)
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped mint leaves, plus 2 sprigs
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 28-oz. can fire-roasted crushed tomatoes, with juice
  • 10 whole-wheat pitas, halved, optional
  • 5 mini Persian cucumbers, sliced, for serving


1. In a bowl, mix bread crumbs, sirloin, scallions, chopped mint, egg, oil, half of garlic, 1 tsp. cumin, cayenne, 2 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. pepper. Use your fingers to combine well. Form into 40 1 1/4- to 1 1/2-inch meatballs. (You may cover and refrigerate meatballs overnight at this point if you'd like.)

2. In a slow cooker, stir tomatoes, mint sprigs, remaining garlic, remaining cumin, 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp. pepper. Gently stir in meatballs. Cover and cook on low until meatballs are cooked through, 3 to 4 hours. Remove and discard mint sprigs. Skim oil from top of sauce.

3. Divide meatballs and sauce among pitas, if desired; stuff with cucumbers.

  • Prep Time:
  • Cook Time:
  • Yield: Serves: 10 (serving size: 4 meatballs, 3 tbsp. sauce, 1/2 cucumber)

Nutritional Information

Calories per serving: 182
Fat per serving: 7g
Saturated fat per serving: 2g
Monounsaturated fat per serving: 0.0g
Polyunsaturated fat per serving: 0.0g
Protein per serving: 21g
Carbohydrate per serving: 9g
Fiber per serving: 3g
Cholesterol per serving: 67mg
Iron per serving: 3mg
Sodium per serving: 822mg
Calcium per serving: 57mg

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