MAKES: 4 servings (12 meatballs)
PREPARATION TIME: 15 minutes
COOKING TIME: 20 minutes
Spaghetti and meatballs just got a low-carb makeover! Here, juicy, mozzarella-stuffed meatballs are cooked in homemade marinara sauce before being tossed over fresh “zoodles,” or zucchini noodles. Prepare both the meatballs and the zoodles the night before so you’ll have a healthy dinner at your fingertips the next day.
14.1 ounces (400 g) ground beef
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
2 tablespoons (8 g/0.3 oz) freshly chopped parsley
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 cup (45 g/1.6 oz) grated Parmesan cheese
1 egg yolk
3.5 ounces (100 g) mozzarella cheese, cut into 12 cubes
1 tablespoon (15 g/0.5 oz) ghee or other healthy cooking fat
SAUCE & ZOODLES:
1 recipe marinara sauce
4 small (600 g/1.3 lb) zucchini, spiralized (see here)
1/3 cup (30 g/1.1 oz) grated Parmesan cheese for topping
Fresh basil or parsley for garnish
In a bowl, mix the beef, oregano, parsley, salt, pepper, Parmesan cheese, and egg yolk. Using your hands, create 12 meatballs. Press a piece of mozzarella cheese inside each meatball and roll until enclosed completely.
Grease a large skillet or a casserole dish with the ghee and place over medium heat. Add the meatballs in a single layer, and cook for 2 minutes on each side, turning with a fork until browned on all sides and cooked through: don’t turn too soon or they will crumble. Pour the prepared marinara sauce over the meatballs, bring to a boil, and cook, covered, over medium-low heat for about 10 minutes.
Add the prepared zucchini noodles and cook for 2 to 5 minutes. Sprinkle with the Parmesan cheese and garnish with fresh herbs.
If making ahead, don’t add the zoodles, let it cool, and refrigerate for up to 4 days. Reheat in a pan with zoodles just before serving.
NUTRITION FACTS PER SERVING (3 MEATBALLS + SAUCE AND ZOODLES):
Total carbs: 11.1 g / Fiber: 2.7 g / Net carbs: 8.4 g / Protein: 33.8 g / Fat: 47.5 g / Energy: 605 kcal
Macronutrient ratio: Calories from carbs (6%), protein (23%), fat (71%)