These baked paleo meatballs are made with beef and almond flour and topped with a simple kale flavor that packs a punch of flavor.
Whole30 dinners can be the trickiest part of doing Whole30. It’s easy to find a few recipes and rotate them throughout the 30 days, but after awhile they get to be a bit boring. The key to sticking to your Whole30 is variety, and these baked paleo meatballs are a great way to switch it up, plus meatballs make every recipe better. They’re made from start to finish in about 30 minutes, and the recipe makes enough so you should have leftovers when all is said and done.
I love meatballs so much, that a few years ago I opted to go to a meatballs restaurant here in Pittsburgh for my birthday (Emporio, for anyone around here). There, they let you customize the kind of meatballs you want along with the sauce/marinade. Pesto meatballs are SO good and usually my go-to, at least when I go out to eat. Now, they can be my and your go-to at home, too.
EASY PALEO MEATBALL INGREDIENTS
- ground beef
- spices (basil, garlic)
- almond flour
As with many whole30 recipes, I paired the meatballs with cauliflower rice. Cauliflower rice is SUCH an easy way to squeeze in a vegetable, and it tastes extra delicious topped with the kale pesto.
HOW TO MAKE BAKED PALEO MEATBALLS
For this recipe, you’ll want to start by prepping the meatballs. You can use a large spoon or even your hands to combine the ground beef, eggs, onion, and fresh parsley together, then you’ll stir in the spices and almond flour. While you can absolutely make these in a skillet, I prefer baking them so I don’t have to keep my eyes on them the entire time. Once you’ve formed the beef into meatballs, you can place them on a parchment-lined baking sheet and bake them for 20 minutes or so. Meanwhile, you can prepare the kale pesto.
Note: if you own a handheld blender like the Magic Bullet, I recommend using that to make the pesto. If you don’t, then I recommend using your food processor.
The pesto is a simple combination of basil, kale, garlic, almonds, and olive oil. Simple ingredients that create a punch of flavor. This would also be delicious on top of paleo chicken meatballs, just saying!
Last, you’ll cook the cauliflower rice according to the package instructions (typically either in a skillet or in the microwave). Then, you’ll put it all together: cauliflower rice topped with meatballs and then everything covered in kale pesto. YUM! If you try these baked paleo meatballs, be sure to tag @thealmondeater on Instagram!
MORE WHOLE30 RECIPES
Baked Paleo Meatballs with Kale Pesto
for the meatballs:
- 1 lb. ground beef
- 1/4 cup yellow onion diced
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley chopped
- 1 egg
- 1/2 tsp dried basil
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- Salt and pepper
- 1/2 cup almond flour
for the pesto:
- 2 cups kale
- 2 cups fresh basil
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1/4 cup almonds
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup water or more
- Preheat oven to 400°.
- Add beef, onion and egg to a large bowl and use a spoon or your hands to combine; then, add in the almond flour.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper; then, use your hands to form meat into meatballs and place them 1" apart on baking sheet.
- Bake meatballs for 15-20 minutes, or until meat is cooked.
- While meatballs are baking, make the pesto. Add all pesto ingredients EXCEPT the water to a food processor and pulse on high. While processor is still going, pour water in through the top, allowing everything to mix together really well.
- Serve meatballs with cauliflower rice and pesto.