With a mellow, kid-friendly flavor, veggies tucked inside, and an easy baking method that makes cleanup a breeze, these Lamb Meatballs are a delicious family dinner recipe to pair with pita, grains, or pasta.

lamb meatballs on white plate.

Lamb Meatballs

Serving new foods to little kids can be a challenge, but recipes like these easy Lamb Meatballs are great to try. The healthy meatballs are flavorful without being overpowering, are super tender, and can be made ahead. And they have veggies tucked right inside for extra nutrition!

With Middle Eastern flavors including cumin and sweetness from raisins, these mini meatballs give a subtle nod to Morocco that I adore. The sweetness from the fruit may make them even more appealing to the kids.

You can use diced Turkish or regular dried apricots in this recipe in place of raisins if you prefer. And these are great to make ahead and pair with rice, couscous, or even buttered noodles. Like my Turkey Sweet Potato Meatballs, they are a favorite option for baby-led weaning, toddlers, and adults at the table.

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Ingredients You Need

To make these meatballs you’ll need to have the following ingredients on hand and ready to go.

ingredients in lamb meatballs on counter.
  • Ground lamb: Look for ground lamb near the ground turkey and chicken in your store. It’s usually more widely available in the spring.
  • Roughly diced onion and carrot: You can use any variety of onion you like here.
  • Plain breadcrumbs: These help the meatballs bind together.
  • Cumin: A little cumin flavors the lamb meatballs nicely.
  • Fresh parsley leaves: I love to add fresh parsley for flavor here, though you can use dried parsley if that’s what you have.
  • Egg: Egg helps the mixture bind together, especially since lamb is a leaner meat.
  • Shredded cheddar or Monterey Jack cheese: Either of these mild cheeses works to add some richness to the meatballs.
  • Raisins or diced dried apricots: Dried fruit is a nice way to add sweetness and add to the Moroccan flavors in this recipe.

Step-by-Step Instructions

Here’s a look at the process involved in making these healthy meatballs. Scroll down to the bottom of this post to see the full recipe.

how to make lamb meatballs step by step.
  1. Place the veggies into the bowl of a food processor. Grind finely.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients and combine well.
  3. Form into 1-inch balls and place on baking sheet.
  4. Bake. Drain on paper towels and serve with Cucumber Sauce or in your favorite marinara sauce with a sprinkle of cinnamon and cumin.

TIP: Stop to scrape down the sides of the food processor bowl as needed to get everything mixed well.

lamb meatballs on kids plate.

What should I serve these with?

Serve with Cucumber Sauce over rice and veggies for a simple grain bowl. Or add to pasta with Tomato Sauce and a sprinkle of cinnamon and cumin. You can also serve them as a sandwich in pita halves with cucumbers and lettuce.

How to Store

You can mix the batter in the morning and portion out the meatballs onto your baking sheet and cover. Store in the fridge until ready to bake at night. Or, make just the batter ahead and stash in the fridge until ready to bake.

Or make them totally ahead, let cool, and store in an airtight container in the fridge for 3-5 days or freezer for up to 3 months.

Best Tips for Success

  • Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for 5 days or in the freezer for 3 months.
  • Use gluten-free breadcrumbs if needed.
  • Grind the veggies finely to ensure a smooth overall final texture.
  • Use a 1 tablespoon measuring spoon to portion out batter.
  • You can fry these in hot oil in a cast-iron skillet if you prefer your meatballs to be a little crunchy.
  • Serve with Cucumber Sauce over rice and veggies, or in Tomato Sauce with pasta with a sprinkle of cinnamon and cumin.

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lamb-meatballs-with-rice-and-carrots-in-white-plate

Moroccan Lamb Meatballs

With a mellow, kid-friendly flavor, veggies tucked inside, and an easy baking method that makes cleanup a breeze, these Lamb Meatballs are a delicious family dinner recipe to pair with pita, grains, or pasta.
5 from 4 votes
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 18 minutes
Total Time 33 minutes
Cuisine Middle Eastern
Course Dinner
Calories 291kcal
Servings 6

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup diced onion
  • 1/4 cup diced carrot
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley leaves (or 1 teaspoon dried parsley)
  • 1 pound ground lamb
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese (or Monterey Jack)
  • 1/4 cup raisins (or diced dried apricots)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup plain breadcrumbs
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Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil and coat with nonstick spray.
  • Place the onion, carrot, and fresh parsley (if using) into the bowl of a food processor. Grind finely for about 30 seconds.
  • Add the lamb, cumin, egg, cheese, raisins or apricots, salt, and breadcrumbs or cornmeal and combine well for 30-60 seconds, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
  • Form into 1-inch balls and place on baking sheet.
  • Bake for 18-20 minutes, or until just starting to brown.
  • Drain on paper towels and serve with Cucumber Sauce or in your favorite marinara sauce with a sprinkle of cinnamon and cumin.

Equipment

Notes

  • Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for 5 days or in the freezer for 3 months.
  • Use gluten-free breadcrumbs if needed.
  • Grind the veggies finely to ensure a smooth overall final texture.
  • Use a 1 tablespoon measuring spoon to portion out batter.
  • You can fry these in hot oil in a cast-iron skillet if you prefer your meatballs to be a little crunchy.
  • Serve with Cucumber Sauce over rice and veggies, or in Tomato Sauce with pasta with a sprinkle of cinnamon and cumin.

Nutrition

Calories: 291kcal, Carbohydrates: 11g, Protein: 16g, Fat: 20g, Saturated Fat: 9g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 8g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 87mg, Sodium: 329mg, Potassium: 284mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 1g, Vitamin A: 1094IU, Vitamin C: 3mg, Calcium: 71mg, Iron: 2mg
Tried this recipe?Rate in the comments and tag @yummytoddlerfood on IG!

This post was first published September 2019.

 

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Comments

  1. I think the reasons or apricots sound delicious. Do you think it’s a choking hazard for a 14 month old?

    1. If diced up and cooked until soft as they are in this recipe, they are not considered to be a choking hazard. I hope your family enjoys this recipe if you try it!

  2. My grand daughter cannot have dairy can I omit the cheese. I have made her turkey meatballs and added thick pureed butternut squash instead of cheese. Could I try using it in this recipe.

  3. These look great, but could you omit the cheese? Or maybe switch to feta? Something about the cheddar seems off with the flavor profile…Thank you!