Lemon Thyme Turkey Meatballs

Juicy inside with a meaty outer crust, each bite of these meatballs is heightened with citrus and the heavenly scent of thyme. Serve over whole-grain noodles, with cranberry sauce on the side.

Serves: 6Hands-on: 25 minutesTotal: 40 minutesDifficulty: Medium

Serves: 6


  • 1⁄4 cup white whole-wheat flour
  • 1 medium onion, cut into chunks
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • Grated zest of 1 fresh lemon
  • 1 1⁄2 tsp. dried thyme, divided
  • 1 lb. lean ground turkey
  • 3⁄4 cup salt-free bread crumbs
  • 3 Tbsp. grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1⁄4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • 1⁄2 cup dry white wine
  • 1 3⁄4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 1⁄2 Tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice


  • Place flour into a shallow bowl and set aside.
  • Place onion, garlic, zest, and 1 teaspoon thyme in a food processor and pulse briefly. Transfer mixture to a large bowl and mix in the turkey, crumbs, cheese, and pepper. Pinch off 2 tablespoons at a time and shape into meatballs. Roll the meatballs in the flour to lightly coat. Reserve the remaining flour.
  • Heat oil in a sauté pan over medium heat. Add meatballs and cook, until browned, about 5 minutes. Remove the meatballs from the pan and set aside.
  • Add wine to the pan, increase heat to medium-high, and cook, scraping up any browned bits, until almost evaporated, about 1 minute. Add the broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and return the meatballs to the pan with the remaining thyme. Cover and cook about 10 minutes.
  • Remove the meatballs again and set aside. Bring the sauce to a boil over medium-high and cook until reduced to about 1 cup, roughly 5 minutes.
  • Add the lemon juice and 1 tablespoon of the flour into a small bowl and whisk until smooth. Add this flour mixture to the sauce and simmer, whisking constantly, until slightly thickened, roughly 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from heat and add meatballs, swirling to coat. Serve immediately.