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Turkey and Cranberry Meatballs with Sweet Potatoes and Kale Quinoa

  • Author: Emily Wilson
  • Prep Time: 0 Minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 Minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x
  • Category: Meal


Favorite fall flavors make a tasty meatball dinner!



For the Sweet Potatoes:

  • 1 pound sweet potatoes
  • 1/4 cup Greek yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vineger
  • Salt and Pepper, to taste

For the Kale Quinoa

  • 3/4 cup quinoa
  • 1 1/2 cups water (scant measure)
  • 2 1/2 cups kale – stems removed, leaves thinly sliced
  • 3 tablespoons white balsamic or white wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup sliced or crushed almonds
  • 3 ounces goat cheese, optional
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

For the Meatballs:

  • 1 1/4 pound ground turkey thigh or breast meat (or 50/50 combo)
  • 1 cup green apple, diced small
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries, roughly chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh sage, finely chopped
  • 1 egg, large
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs, plain
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon mustard powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Start by steaming the sweet potatoes. Cut them in half lengthwise and place in a microwave-safe dish, like a glass casserole dish. Add about 1/4 inch of water to the dish, then cover with plastic wrap. Fold back one corner to allow steam to escape. Microwave on high for 5-8 minutes until very tender. Should pierce very easily with a fork. Once steamed, allow to cool slightly.
  3. Next, measure water and quinoa into a medium sauce pan and set over high heat. Once water is boiling, cover with a tight-fitting lid and lower heat. Simmer for 15-18 minutes until water is absorbed and grain is tender.
  4. Now, start on the meatballs. Prep the apples, dried cranberries and fresh sage and place in a mixing bowl with the remaining meatball ingredients. If you have an upright mixer with a paddle attachment, use the mixer to combine all ingredients. Or, just use your hands.
  5. Once well combined, portion mixture into 12 equally sized meatballs (about 2 ounces or 3 tablespoons each). Set on a lightly oiled sheet pan. Meatballs can be close, but not touching. Place in the preheated oven and bake 20-25 minutes until cooked through.
  6. Place almonds in a small saute pan and set over low heat to toast. Shake pan often to prevent burning. Once almonds are golden brown and fragrant transfer to a large mixing bowl.
  7. Once potatoes are cool enough to touch scoop flesh out of the skin and place in a food processor fitted with the blade attachment. Add Greek yogurt and apple cider vinegar. Puree until smooth. If too thick, add more yogurt. Season with salt and pepper to taste.  ​
  8. Once quinoa is cooked, transfer to a plate and spread out in a thin layer to cool faster and stop the cooking process.
  9. Remove stems from kale and shred leaves with hands or slice thinly with a knife. Add to bowl with the almonds. Drizzle with vinegar and olive oil, season with salt and pepper then toss in the cooled quinoa. Stir just to combine. Crumble in goat cheese and gently toss once more.
  10. Place a few meatballs on dinner plates along with scoops of sweet potato puree and quiona with kale. Serve and enjoy!


To get dinner on the table faster, prep items ahead of time. The meatballs can be mixed, shaped, covered and refrigerated 1-2 days in advance. The sweet potatoes can be pureed ahead of time, then reheated in the microwave, while the kale quinoa can be served cold or room temperature.