Turkey Meatballs with Sweet Red Sauce

You will notice I didn’t tag this recipe as one of the healthy ones. The turkey meatballs certainly are healthy, but once I smothered the meatballs in the Sweet Red Sauce, they were goners. Sugar isn’t typically at the top of my ingredient list for the recipes I make and design, but it is an occasional treat. The red sauce has a kick to it as there is a bit of cayenne pepper sprinkled in. I served the meatballs on pasta for my husband and spiralized zucchini along with some feta cheese for me.

This recipe and the Butternut Squash Turkey Chili recipe are the perfect pair. You can make them at the same time as they share many common ingredients. Remember prep once, enjoy twice.


  • Turkey Meatballs
  • 1/2 pound ground turkey

  • 1 tablespoon minced yellow onion

  • 1 garlic clove, minced

  • 1 tablespoon minced, green bell pepper

  • 1 egg

  • 2 tablespoons tomato sauce

  • 1/2 teaspoon italian seasoning

  • 2 tablespoons, gluten-free bread crumbs

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

  • Sweet Red Sauce
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

  • 1 cup crushed tomatoes

  • 1/4 cup green bell pepper, chopped

  • 1/2 small yellow onion, minced

  • 1 stalk celery, minced

  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar

  • 1/4 teaspoon italian seasoning

  • 1 clove garlic, minced

  • 1 teaspoon chile powder

  • Sprinkle of cayenne pepper


  • Turkey Meatballs
  • Blend the turkey meatball ingredients together and refrigerate for 10 minutes. I find chilling the turkey, improves my ability to form nice, round meatballs.
  • Using a dough scoop, form uniform sized, round meatballs.
  • Saute in a skillet coated with olive oil until the meatballs are brown on all sides.
  • Sweet Red Sauce
  • In a saucepan coated with olive oil, saute the bell pepper, yellow onion, garlic and celery until tender.
  • Add the crushed tomatoes, seasonings and sugar.
  • Add the meatballs and simmer for one hour.
  • Serve with grated parmesan cheese.