FFf Eclectic Red Barn: Healthy Meatballs with Mushroom and Spinach Gravy

Friday, February 19, 2016

Healthy Meatballs with Mushroom and Spinach Gravy

Do you love meatballs but wish they were healthier? Have you been watching your weight and trying to eat better?

I certainly have been trying to make better choices. Giving up foods we like doesn't work for very long, so when I saw this recipe for these Meatballs with Mushroom and Spinach Gravy, I couldn't wait to make them.
Eclectic Red Barn: Meatballs with Spanich and Mushroom Gravy

The recipe is from Rocco Dispirito. He has a cook book called: The Negative Calorie Diet and this recipe is included. 

I have tried many recipes from this book and this one is my favorite. I thought it was a little strange to beat the meatballs with a hand mixer, but it turned out fine. I have also made the meatballs without doing that and they turned out ok, but better when I used the mixer. Creates a different texture.
Eclectic Red Barn: Meatballs with Mushroom and Spanich Gravy
The spinach and mushrooms are so very good for you without any extra sugar and the meatballs provide the protein you need. Arrowroot is used to thicken the gravy. 

Arrowroot is a fine white powder you can use as a thickening agent. It will not make your sauces cloudy or opaque.  You can usually find it in the spice section of your grocery store. I had to get mine at Whole Foods. I did not have the puffed rice; instead used an organic brown rice that I ground in a coffee grounder.

You may want to add a little more broth than called for. I had plenty left over but not nearly enough broth. 

If you are looking for a wonderful meal that is high in protein and yummy vegetables, then try this.  It is very satisfying and filling.

Recipe                                                         Print

Meatballs with Mushroom and Spinach Gravy
Meatball with Mushroom and Spinach Gravy.JPG

Makes 4 servings
Prep Time: 10 Minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes

12 ounces 96% lean ground beef
1 cup finely chopped puffed brown rice (such as Arrowhead Mills)
4 cups unsalted beef stock
Freshly ground black pepper
Olive oil cooking spray
4 cups sliced cremini mushrooms
1 cup thinly sliced onion
8 cups washed spinach
2 tablespoons arrowroot, dissolved in 2 teaspoons of the broth
1 ounce Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grated

  1. Place the beef in a large mixing bowl, pushing it to one side. Add the rice and 3/4 cup of the beef stock to the other side, season with salt and pepper and let the rice absorb the broth - about a minute.Using an electric hand mixer, mix the beef into the rice until homogeneous - about 1 minute.Form into 16 equal meatballs.
  2. Coat a large nonstick skillet with olive oil cooking spray and place over medium high heat. Once the skillet is hot, add the meatballs and brown on one side; turn the meatballs and brown the other side. Transfer the meatballs to a holding plate.
  3. Spray the skillet again with cooking spray and place back on heat. Add the mushrooms and onion and cook until browned and softened, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the spinach and cook until it wilts. Add remain stock and the arrowroot slurry. (mix the arrowroot with some beef broth) Bring to a simmer while whisking until thickened.
  4. Add the meatballs and simmer until cooked through 6 to 8 minutes. (I cooked mine longer)
  5. Spoon the meatballs and mushroom mixture into bowls, dividing them equally. Sprinkle with cheese and serve.
    Per Serving:
    Calories: 226
    Fat: 6g
    Protein: 29g
    Carbohydrates: 15.5g
    Fiber: 2g
    Sodium: 290mg

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