30 Minute Meals

Growing up, my mom was my Paula Deen, Rachel Ray, and Emeril. She could whip up a delicious meal in 30 minutes. We always had a nutritious dinner together every night. However, she did have this crazy/obnoxious rule about us not being allowed to drink anything until we were finished with dinner.

When I got married, I made it my mission to learn quick, (sometimes) healthy, delicious recipes that I could prepare for dinner. In high school and college, I used to be a terrible cook – too much oil, too much salt, too bland, too overcooked, etc. Now I think I’m at least proficient in the basics.

I love baking savory foods – potatoes, carrots, meats, pastas. One of my favorite things to make is of the meatloafy variety. After work today, I was suddenly inspired to make mozzarella-stuffed meatballs. Delicious? Check! Healthy? Um… sure!

After I Googling some inspiration, I got to work. Here’s the line up…

  • 1.5 lbs of lean ground beef
  • salt, basil, garlic salt, paprika
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • brown spicy mustard
  • fat-free mozzarella cheese
  • two eggs
  • a bunch of stale Italian bread, sliced

I decided to add two eggs instead of one and two meatloaf ingredients that I’ve never used in meatballs before – Worcestershire sauce and spicy brown mustard. I haven’t made a knockout meatball before so I figured some modifications couldn’t hurt.

I popped some stale bread into the blender to make bread crumbs. Saving stale bread = wasting less food + spending less. Woohoo!

Chop, food processor, purée… ét viola!

I unceremoniously dumped everything in…

…and mashed it all together.

Then, I cubed my cheese. We bought fat-free mozzarella cheese because it was on sale. Fat free cheese tastes funny – it’s harder and drier.

I grabbed a chunk of meat, pressed in a cube or two of cheese, and made a ball. Plunk down in the baking dish and repeat. I made twelve large meatballs.

I’ve tried making meatballs by baking and frying. I prefer baking because I can make them all at once. My biggest problem was that the meatballs would be too dry. So I shortened the baking time by 10 minutes and baked them at 350 for 25 minutes. they came out perfectly 😀

I assumed the blogging position while I waited…

Hello my pretties 🙂 Side note: It’s not necessary to grease the pan with olive oil. I don’t usually but this website suggested it. There was so much grease in the pan, yuck! This was AFTER I drained them:

This little guy looked like he was sticking his tongue out at me:


I’m not sure if it was the weird fat-free cheese, but I think I’ll nix the cheese in the future. The cheese hardened somewhat, which I didn’t like. Fat-free cheese notwithstanding, this recipe’s a winner!


About elbrooklyntaco

I'm a lover of urban living, thriftiness, and blogs! The concept behind this blog is to document the growth of our family and our adventures living in the concrete jungle of Brooklyn.

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