OKAY, today I whipped up quite the meal prep sitch in mah kitch, LET ME TELL YA.
These ones are going to be a classic. I just know it! They’re gluten-free chicken & kale meatballs and they’re… wait for it… THEBOMBDOTCOM.
- Super clean!
- Protein rich!
- Full of greens, vitamins & minerals!
- Healthy fats!
- Spiced up for days!
- Perfectly crispy on the outside & deliciously chewy & scrumptious on the inside!
- Broiled to perfection!
- Gluten-free (the trick is to use 100% brown rice bread crumbs & ground flax seed).
Now, not only are these babies ALL THAT GOOD STUFF, but I mean… taste-wise, they will seriously WOW you. They are legit perfection. They are crumbly & crispy, but on the inside… MY GOODNESS. There’s all kinds of kale-eggy-brown-rice-breadcrumby-SPICED-UP-goodness going on here & you won’t even be mad about it baby!
Now, taste is pretty much everything, BUT IT’S NOT EVERY-EVERYTHING. A good recipe is also VERSATILE. And let me tell you, these babies kill it in the versatility department. They pair well with pretty much EVERYTHING. And by everything I mean:
- Crumbled up or topped in salads/buddha bowls;
HERE’S SOME BOWL INSPO!!!!
- In pasta dishes (If you need some inspo, search “penne”, “pasta” &/or “fettuccine” on the blog – IT WON’T DISAPPOINT, I promise!);
- In soups!!!! (Need inspo? Try my Kelly’s-Best-of-Both-Worlds-Turkey-Meatball-Yummiest-Ever-Soup a.k.a. Clean-Eating-Macronutrient-Warm-&-Cozy-Comfort-Food-For-The-Win-Oh-&-Soup-Game-Strong!)
- In sprouted bread/buns (CHICKEN BURGER STYLE!);
- AS IS – BITE SIZED FTW (with a side of salsa, Dijon mustard or my 9-Ingredient Clean Eating Tzatziki).
I don’t think I need to tell you why chicken is healthy & good for you (& why it’s definitely a healthier option than red meat – although yes, you can have your red meat in moderation!).
The kale adds that extra touch & acts as a perfect binder when mixed with the egg! And well… ALL HAIL KALE. Why kale, you ask? Let me explain!
CAUSE IT’S A FREAKING NUTRITIONAL POWERHOUSE!!!!!
- Kale contains carotenoids (lutein & zeaxanthin), which give it its deep, dark green colour & act as antioxidants that protect against macular degeneration.
- It also contains beta-carotene, that is converted into vitamin A, as needed! Vitamin A is needed for sebum production, which is necessary for the growth of all bodily tissues, including skin & hair!
- Kale also contains flavonoids, which provide more antioxidant benefits, with an anti-inflammatory touch, protecting against chronic inflammation, certain disease & oxidative stress!
- It’s a huge source of folate, which is a B vitamin essential for nervous system health, that helps in the making of red blood cells, repairs DNA, regulates cell metabolism & supports a healthy immunity.
- If all this wasn’t enough, kale also contains alpha linolenic acid, which is an omega-3 fatty acid that also helps reduce inflammation & fight certain auto-immune disorders.
- It’s a great source of iron, which as I’m sure you all know, is necessary for most of our bodily functions & helps with the formation of haemoglobin, enzymes & the transportation of oxygen to various parts of the body, as well as cell growth & liver function.
- Kale also contains certain phytochemicals, which help protect against certain cancers & help with overall detoxification of the bod!
- It may also help lower the risk of heart disease & reduce cholesterol levels! (BONUS IF YOU STEAM IT!);
- It also contains alpha-lipoid acid, which is YET ANOTHER ANTIOXIDANT, that has been shown to lower glucose levels, increase insulin sensitivity & help prevent oxidative stress-induced changes. It also helps maintain levels of other antioxidants, such as vitamin C!
- Kale is also HIGH in vitamin K (good for bone & brain health), calcium (also great for bone health & healthy metabolism), fibre (good for digestion… DUH!) & of course, vitamin C (supports immunity, metabolism, provides the body with necessary hydration + as you munchkins know, is a necessary building block for the formation of collagen, which is the main protein of connective tissues & provides structure to skin & hair!).
TOLD YOU IT WAS A POWERHOUSE.
Now you know why I infused these babies with it.
And, now, without further ado, let’s get to the nitty-gritty!
My loves, YOU WILL NEED:
- 1 pack of ground chicken (turkey or beef will work too, if that’s what you prefer!);
- 1 egg;
- 1/4 cup of gluten-free brown rice breadcrumbs;
- 1 tbsp. of ground flaxseed meal;
- 1/3 cup of kale, REALLY REALLY CHOPPED;
- 1 medium white onion, REALLY CHOPPED;
- 4 cloves of fresh garlic, MINCED;
- 1 tsp. of sea salt;
- 1 tbsp. of black pepper;
- 1 tbsp. of dried basil (or oregano);
- 1 tsp. of red pepper chilli flakes;
- 1/2 tbsp. of smoked paprika;
- 1/2 tbsp. of ground cumin.
Now, for that HOW-TO?
- Preheat your oven to 350F & line a baking sheet with parchment paper & set it aside.
- Combine all the ingredients in a large bowl & mix well until evenly combined & a meatball batter (is that a thing??) is formed!
- Once the batter is formed, roll the batter into 1 1/2 tbsp.-ish balls & place them on the parchment-lined baking sheet (You can place them relatively close to each other because they won’t spread while they bake!).
- Bake the babes for 20 minutes & then switch your oven to a high broil & broil for 3 minutes to crisp up & brown the tops!
- Remove from the oven & DEVOUR immediately or let cool! (& taste one… or two… or three… OOPS!).
- Once cooled or if you’ve got leftovers post-devouring sesh, store in an airtight container and refrigerate!