Turkey Meatballs Arabiatta on Quinoa


The name of the sauce in this recipe, Arabiatta, means 'angry' in Italian due to the heat of the chili peppers (in this case chili pepper flakes), which you can adjust according to your preference.

45 min
6 Servings


2 cup
4 cup
2 lb
lean ground turkey
1 Tbsp
egg (lightly beaten)
1/4 cup
parmesan cheese (plus extra for serving)
3 clove
garlic (minced)
1/4 cup
bread crumbs
black pepper
cooking spray
1 Tbsp
olive oil
medium onion (chopped)
3 cup
canned crushed tomato
2 tsp
dried basil
1 tsp
crushed red pepper flakes
2 Tbsp
light brown sugar
fresh basil leaves (for garnish)
Prep Time:
45 min
Total Time:
45 min


Cook the quinoa by first rinsing thoroughly and draining the dried grain. Bring 4 cups of water to a boil in a medium pot and add the quinoa. Lower heat and simmer for twenty minutes or until you see a group of volcano-looking formations on the top of the cooked grains. Remove from heat, fluff and let cool.

For the meatballs, heat your oven to 350° F.  Combine the turkey, oregano, egg, parmesan cheese, ½ of the garlic, bread crumbs, salt and black pepper and mix thoroughly.  Form the mixture into tablespoon size balls and place onto a rimmed baking sheet prepared with cooking spray. Bake for 25 minutes.  

In a saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat and cook the onion for 3 to 5 minutes, then add the remaining minced garlic and stir for 30 seconds. Add the crushed tomato, spices and brown sugar and simmer on low heat for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Add in the cooked meatballs and coat them with the sauce, then serve on a mound of quinoa, topped with a dusting of Parmesan and some fresh basil.

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Chef Michi Watarai