A new take on turkey meatballs — apples and cranberries

I will omit the salt and substitute panko breadcrumbs for regular because they are lower in salt. I’m also using an egg white rather than a whole egg.

Turkey meatballs have become a major part of my redone Italian recipe file when cooking at home. I also make them for parties, serving them in my low-salt, low-fat homemade Italian tomato sauce (we call it gravy in my family).

Turkey meatballs are a low-fat, low-salt alternative to beef meatballs.
Turkey meatballs are a low-fat, low-salt alternative to beef meatballs.

So I was excited to see this take on turkey meatballs that includes apples in the meat mixture and a cranberry sauce. The recipe appeared in a recent LoseIt newsletter where LoseIt linked to another site that had the recipe and lots of photos. Here’s the ingredient list:

For the Meatballs:

  • 1 pound 93% lean ground turkey
  • 1/2 cup plain breadcrumbs
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup shredded tart apple, such as Granny Smith, washed with peel on
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons finely chopped sage
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • Chopped fresh parsley, optional for garnish

For the Cranberry Sauce:

  • 1 cup whole berry cranberry sauce
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • Zest of 1 orange
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed orange juice

Continue reading “A new take on turkey meatballs — apples and cranberries”

Advertisements

A low-salt, low-fat Thanksgiving dinner — start your planning today

It takes a little smart shopping and a lot of recipe tweaking, but you can do it and I can show you how.

Thanksgiving is only a few days away, time to start planning how you’ll make it a low-salt, low-fat day but still enjoy traditional items like turkey and even mashed potatoes.

Time to eat all those turkeys! Happy Thanksgiving!
Time to eat all those turkeys! Buy a fresh one to cut salt that comes in self-basting, frozen ones. Happy Thanksgiving!

It takes a little smart shopping and a lot of recipe tweaking, but you can do it and I can show you how.

Check some of my past posts on low-salt side dishes, how to find a low-salt turkey, how to make low-salt stuffing and other tips to cut the salt. Continue reading “A low-salt, low-fat Thanksgiving dinner — start your planning today”

Lean ground turkey, let’s review how to find the leanest variety

I’ve warned you that not all ground turkey is all that lean, read the nutrition label to find the leanest variety your food store offers.

Ground turkey has replaced ground beef in a variety of dishes I make, from meatballs to tacos because it is, or at least can be leaner than most ground beef offerings. But I’ve warned you before that not all ground turkey is all that lean, read the nutrition label to find the leanest variety your food store offers.

Which is leaner? Do you see the different descriptions? No? Another reason to always read nutrition labels.
Which is leaner? Do you see the different descriptions? No? Another reason to always read nutrition labels.

Some brands offer lean and extra lean ground turkey. I recently found another variation of that in the Honeysuckle brand, made by food giant Cargill. It offers white meat ground turkey and breast meat ground turkey. You would think white meat would be the leanest, but the breast meat offering is leaner, 1.5 grams of fat per four ounces compared with 8 grams in the other variety.

Why? I’m guessing skin is ground along with the meat for the higher fat one, it adds flavor and moisture. When you find these two types, buy one of each package to mix in a turkey meatloaf to get some flavor and lower fat content overall.
John

A low-salt brown gravy mix? Taste was ok, but salt is still high

I bought two packets and mixed the contents with water to make my turkey gravy. Each quarter cup, prepared had 210 mgs of sodium, so if you use half a cup, you’re at 410 mgs, about a fifth of my daily salt limit.

I was recently at Food 4 Less looking for a low-fat, low-salt brown gravy to have with some left-over turkey we had brought home from my in-laws house on Easter. Most prepared gravies are very high in salt, even the fat-free varieties. I have found a salt-free gravy online but didn’t have time to order it in this instance.

So after comparing all the prepared gravies and finding them all too high in salt and fat, I looked at the mixes section. Gravy mixes normally are loaded with salt too but I was surprised to find a reduced salt offering in the Kroeger store brand.

Kroger's reduced sodium brown gravy had less salt than prepared gravies but the taste was just ok, it still tasted salty to me.
Kroger’s reduced sodium brown gravy had less salt than prepared gravies but the taste was just ok, it still tasted salty to me.
Kroger reduced sodium gravy nutrition info
Kroger reduced sodium gravy nutrition info

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I bought two packets and mixed the contents with water to make my turkey gravy. Each quarter cup, prepared had 210 mgs of sodium, so if you use half a cup, you’re at 410 mgs, about a fifth of my daily salt limit.That’s a significant amount for a condiment. The taste was ok, nothing to write home about.

Would I buy this again? I suppose, but not with a lot of enthusiasm.
John

Pure and Simple lunchmeat? Not simple enough

I was hoping this new Pure and Simple line might be different. The coupon ad highlights that this line contains no antibiotics, no animal byproducts and no nitrates/nitrites. Bravo for all of that, especially the last since those have been linked to cancer.

Pure and Simple apparently is a new brand of lunchmeat from processor Land O’ Frost. I saw a coupon for it in my local paper recently and was intrigued. All lunch meats have too much salt for me, and for most people really. Some brands have tried to take out some salt, but as far as I’m concerned, their salt content is still too high.

I was hoping this new Pure and Simple line might be different. The coupon ad highlights that this line contains no antibiotics, no animal byproducts and no nitrates/nitrites. Bravo for all of that, especially the last since those have been linked to cancer.

I was hoping this new line of lunchmeats had less or no sodium. It has a lot, avoid it.
I was hoping this new line of lunchmeats had less or no sodium. It has a lot, avoid it.

But when I searched out salt content for the new line, I was disappointed. Two ounces of Land O Frost Pure and Simple – Honey Roasted Turkey Breast has 380 mgs of sodium, according to myfitnesspal.com. that compares to 360 mgs in 51 grams, about 1.7 ounces, of the same company’s Simply Delicious line of lunchmeats, so it’s really no improvement. It is less than its Premium line which has 510 mgs of sodium in 50 grams of its turkey.

Two ounces of turkey is not a meal for anyone really. I’d need at least six or eight in a sandwich, which would be a day’s worth of sodium for me. So I’ll continue to avoid cold cuts to maintian my low sodium diet.
John

Turkey meatballs, a great side for Italian dishes

I normally get 17 turkey meatballs from a pound, so each is a bit less than one ounce, or one gram of fat. The breadcrumbs are low-salt, the cheese has salt, so be prudent in how much you add.

Meatballs are an integral part of Italian-American cooking (not so much in Italy, but that’s another story) but red meat is largely off my diet since my angioplasty in 2012. So I’ve switched from beef to turkey meatballs. It occurred to me I’ve referred to them in past posts here but never shown how to make them.

So here’s a quick guide. Start with a pound of lean ground turkey, which has about one gram of fat per ounce. Add four to six ounces of Panko breadcrumbs, some reduced fat Parmesan cheese and Italian seasoning you can buy pre-mixed (be sure to get a mix without salt listed as an ingredient). Add cheese and seasoning to your taste preference.

Turkey meatballs are a low-fat, low-salt alternative to beef meatballs.
Turkey meatballs are a low-fat, low-salt alternative to beef meatballs.

Combine the ingredients in a bowl, adding water to help bind it all. Mix it together, then form it into meatballs using your hands, rolling it clockwise across your palms (or you can buy a device to make meatballs).

Turkey meatball ingredients include lean ground turkey, Panko breadcrumbs, low-fat cheese and Italian seasoning.
Turkey meatball ingredients include lean ground turkey, panko breadcrumbs, low-fat cheese and Italian seasoning.

I normally get 17 turkey meatballs from a pound, so each is a bit less than one ounce, or one gram of fat. The breadcrumbs are low-salt, the cheese has salt, so be prudent in how much you add. This is still a low-salt offering, and definitely lower-fat than beef or more traditional beef and pork meatballs.

Turkey meatball ingredients in a mixing bowl, just add water and mix it all up.
Turkey meatball ingredients in a mixing bowl, just add water and mix it all up.

Cook them for about an hour at 350, turning after 30 minutes. Coat the bottom of the pan with water to avoid sticking, you may need to add more water at the 30-minute mark too.

Enjoy!
John

No Sugar, No Salt Recipes for the 12 Days of Christmas

The holidays are upon us and, if you’re on a no-salt, no-fat, no-sugar diet like I am, you’re likely scratching your head about what you’ll cook for all your guests and family that will keep them happy but also will keep you on your eating plan. Put your worries aside, The No Salt, No Fat, No Sugar Journal present our special 12 days of Christmas recipes

The holidays are upon us and, if you’re on a no-salt, no-fat, no-sugar diet like I am, you’re likely scratching your head about what you’ll cook for all your guests and family that will keep them happy but also will keep you on your eating plan.

Put your worries aside, The No Salt, No Fat, No Sugar Journal present our special 12 days of Christmas recipes, dishes we’ve tried and loved, and written about here, that you can make for large groups, special gatherings or just a special sit-down dinner for you and your closest loved one.

My low-fat, low-salt manicotti, One of these has 128 calories, 1.8 grams of fat and 70 mgs of sodium. I eat five at a time
My low-fat, low-salt manicotti, One of these has 128 calories, 1.8 grams of fat and 70 mgs of sodium. I eat five at a time

So simply click the links below and let the cooking, and holiday cheer, begin!

Monday, Dec. 22

How to make a low-fat, low-salt turkey meatloaf

Tuesday, Dec. 23

Can You Ever Make a Quick, Healthy Meal?

Wednesday, Dec. 24, Christmas Eve

What Can Someone on a Restricted Diet Eat on Christmas Eve?

Thursday, Dec. 25, Christmas Day

What Can Someone on a Restricted Diet Eat on Christmas Day?

Recipe: Low-salt, low-fat baked mostaccioli

Friday, Dec. 26

Pizza on a restricted diet — an illustrated how-to guide

Saturday, Dec. 27
Turning leftovers into a treat — a wonderful salmon salad

Sunday, Dec. 28

Rosemary chicken: a nice way to add flavor to chicken breast

Monday, Dec. 29

Steelhead trout: a variation better than the norm?

Tuesday, Dec. 30

Walleye: a tasty fish alternative

Wednesday, Dec. 31, New Year’s Eve

Happy New Year: with no and low salt treats

Thursday, Jan. 1

Extra Lean Beefburgers

Friday. Jan. 2

Chicken Parmesan: a low-fat, low-salt alternative recipe