These turkey meatballs with avocado are packed with spinach for a healthy meal or appetizer.

Remember how I ranted about winter back in October when we got that freak blizzard and went on and on about how much I hate the cold and hate the snow.

Well, it’s definitely true but from the first cold snap through the holidays I can tolerate it. When you grow up in New York, it’s supposed  to be cold during Christmas. Come January 1st though, I’m ready for spring. I want tulips, budding trees, insane pollen allergies, and warm weather.

Today’s high is forecast for 23.

TWO-THREE.

That is not spring.

So, what do you do when you want spring but mother nature isn’t cooperating?

Turkey Meatballs with Avocado Citrus Dipping Sauce
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Turkey Meatballs with Avocado Sauce

Now, I don’t really associate meatballs with spring, but hear me out. It’s about the flavor in these meatballs and the dipping sauce that goes with them.

These are no tomato sauce simmering, Sunday pasta kind of meatballs (for that, try these cheddar stuffed turkey zucchini meatballs with tomato sauce). They’re bursting with lemon, lime, spinach, yellow peppers and fresh parsley.

Sound more springy?

Turkey Meatballs with Avocado

The avocado dip is basically a mock guacamole with more of a citrusy flare to complement the meatballs.

You can put it on the meatballs or you can eat it straight with a spoon.

Both are fine. 

Turkey Meatballs

These would make awesome party appetizers, go perfectly on top of some pasta using the avocado dip as a sauce or, just served plain as the protein component in a normal meal.

I ate them with an apple for lunch yesterday. Totally normal.

Turkey Meatballs with Avocado Citrus Sauce

Spring has sprung….in your mouth at least. Only 79 more days to go.

Worried about how to know when ground turkey is fully cooked? Check out this simple guide on how long to cook ground turkey for all the tips and tricks.

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Turkey Meatballs with Avocado Citrus Dipping Sauce

Servings: 20 servings
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Total: 35 minutes
These turkey meatballs with avocado are packed with spinach for a healthy meal or appetizer.

Ingredients 

For the Meatballs

  • 1 lb. ground turkey
  • 10 oz. frozen spinach, thawed and drained
  • 1 yellow pepper, diced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • salt & pepper

For the Avocado Dipping Sauce

  • 1 ripe avocado
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • zest of 1/2 a lime
  • juice of 1/2 a lemon
  • juice of 1/2 a lime
  • 2 tablespoons of fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons sour cream
  • pinch of cayenne pepper
  • salt & pepper to taste

Instructions 

For the Meatballs

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • In a large skillet over medium high heat, saute onion, shallot and garlic with 1 tablespoon olive oil for 3-5 minutes until softened.
  • Add peppers and red pepper flakes and saute for another 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat.
  • Combine onions, pepper, garlic mixture in a large bowl with turkey and spinach.
  • Add remaining ingredients and mix together, using your hands if necessary.
  • Roll into balls, just slightly larger than golf ball size and set aside.
  • Heat remaining tablespoon of olive oil over medium high heat in skillet.
  • Place meatballs in skillet and pan fry for 2-3 minutes on each side until browned.
  • Once meatballs are browned, place on a baking sheet that’s been lined with foil and sprayed with baking spray.
  • Bake for 18-20 minutes until fully cooked through.

For the Avocado Dipping Sauce

  • Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and mash together with a fork (or use a food processor) until fully mixed.

Nutrition

Serving: 1SERVINGCalories: 130kcalCarbohydrates: 9gProtein: 8gFat: 8gSaturated Fat: 2gPolyunsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 34mgSodium: 103mgFiber: 2gSugar: 4g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Appetizers
Cuisine: American
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Founder and Writer at Running to the Kitchen | About

Gina Matsoukas is an AP syndicated writer. She is the founder, photographer and recipe developer of Running to the Kitchen — a food website focused on providing healthy, wholesome recipes using fresh and seasonal ingredients. Her work has been featured in numerous media outlets both digital and print, including MSN, Huffington post, Buzzfeed, Women’s Health and Food Network.

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28 Comments

  1. What a yummy recipe! I love the taste of avocado, but I think I’m allergic. I will have to try the meatballs though!

  2. I’m not a huge avocado fan, but something about that dip looks really good! I found a market near my house that sells really cheap avocados, so I’ll give it a try.

  3. If I ever go back to eating meat, I am making these for myself! In the meantime, I might cook ’em for my family.

    Is this your own recipe?

  4. Haha, I agree– I always liked the snow in December…January, February, and definitely MARCH, not so much :-)

  5. Those look great! I love the little flip flop forks! I’m about ready to start wearing flip flops again!

  6. I was wanting it to finally get cold here, and now I take it back. It’s so cold and windy, and I hate it! Serves me right…