I’m continually looking for ways to incorporate organ meat into our meals. The kids already love pâté, heart, and tongue so “hidden liver” is more for the sake of supplementing, not necessarily sneaking it in (unlike zucchini, ha!).
These turkey meatballs were a hit from the start. Both kids loved them (even as cold leftovers) and The Mister nodded his approval as well.
Do you, boo.
The ingredients are quite simple. You could substitute ground chicken thighs or ground chicken hearts instead of ground turkey, use a white sweet potato (or possibly another moderately starchy root vegetable) if you’d rather.
Your meatballs may take longer or shorter to make depending on (but not limited to) mis en place, distractions, tools used, how comfortable you are with grinding meat, and your oven. For me, once I had all ingredients measured/grated, this came together in about 10 minutes + bake time (about 30 minutes, until deep golden in color, or until meatballs reach an internal temperature of 165° F).
For easier prep work, I chopped the onion and sweet potato in 1-inch chunks and ran them through my Kitchenaid meat grinder fitted with the coarse plate (the one with the biggest holes), alternating between the liver and vegetables. If you don’t have a meat grinder, you could try chopping the chicken liver into a fine dice or pulsing it in a food processor until it’s chopped finely enough to mix.
If using your stand mixer’s grinder attachment, please play attention to the motor when grinding meat. If for some reason the motor begins to get hot, stop grinding meat immediately. Cover both the ground meat and chopped meat waiting to be ground and place in the fridge. Thoroughly wash grinder parts until ready to resume grinding.
- 20 oz ground turkey
- ½ lb chicken livers, trimmed if need be, rinsed, patted dry, then ground using a coarse plate on the grinder
- ½ onion, cut into small chunks and ground (or grated)
- 1 small sweet potato, cut into small chunks and ground (or grated)
- 1 handful flat leaf/Italian parsley, chopped
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- ¼ tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 2 TB melted fat of choice (I used rendered bacon fat, but duck fat would be nice)
- Preheat oven to 375° F. Line two half sheet pans with parchment paper.
- In a large bowl, mix ground turkey, ground livers, onion, sweet potato, parsley, garlic, cinnamon, and sea salt until combined. Do not over mix.
- Form meat mixture into even-sized meatballs (I use an ice cream scoop because we like large meatballs) and place on prepared sheet pans. Continue until mixture is gone.
- Drizzle meatballs with melted fat and bake 15 minutes and swap the pans on racks. Continue baking 15 or so minutes, until meatballs are a deep golden brown and the internal temperature reaches 165° F
- Serve immediately. Cool the rest before storing in fridge or freezer.