Want an easier solution to the main course for your Friendsgiving feast this year? Me too! That's why I'm saying no to roasting a whole bird, and yes to a big batch of juicy turkey meatballs stuffed with lots of nutty Parmesan and all the earthy, herby flavors you expect from a Thanksgiving turkey, like fresh sage. Partner them with cranberry sauce or gravy for dipping, a slew of sides, and you'll have an impressive meal to remember.
Get Your Fill of Turkey Without Roasting the Bird
Sure, turkey meatballs aren't totally traditional fare, but Friendsgiving is the meal made to go beyond the classics your family usually cooks up. Not only are meatballs the easiest way to get your fill of turkey at Friendsgiving and your office Thanksgiving, but they're also quicker cooking, cheaper, and can be made well in advance.
Turkey Meatballs with Parmesan and Sage
Makes about 48 meatballs; serves 8 to 10
unseasoned dried breadcrumbs
whole or 2% milk
finely grated Parmesan cheese
large egg, lightly beaten
cloves garlic, minced
finely chopped fresh sage leaves
finely chopped fresh parsley leaves
freshly ground black pepper
Cranberry sauce or chutney, for serving (optional)
Arrange 2 racks to divide the oven into thirds and heat to 375°F. Line 2 rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper.
Combine the breadcrumbs and milk in a large bowl. Add the Parmesan, egg, garlic, sage, parsley, salt, and pepper, and whisk to combine. Add the ground turkey and mix with your fingertips until just combined. Do not mash the meat or overwork the mixture, or else the meatballs will be dry and tough.
Form the mixture into 1 1/2-inch meatballs (about 2 tablespoons each) and place on the prepared baking sheets.
Bake until the meatballs are browned and an instant-read thermometer registers 165°F, 15 to 18 minutes.
Storage: Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
Make ahead and freezing: Make the meat mixture the day before, form into meatballs, and place on the parchment-lined baking sheets. Cover and refrigerate until ready to bake. Alternatively, freeze until solid, then transfer to a resealable freezer bag and freeze for up to 2 months. Defrost in the refrigerator and cook according to recipe instructions.