Turkey Meatballs with Italian Sausage

Turkey meatballs made with a mix of dark ground turkey and Italian sausage turkey links. Keep the dish classic and serve with spaghetti or try something different and enjoy them with broccoli slaw.

Turkey Meatballs with Spaghetti

Turkey Meatballs

Traditional Italian recipes are harder to come by then you might think. Probably because what one family considers a classic, another would create entirely different.

There is one common thread though, regardless if you use fresh bread or dried breadcrumbs, milk or wine in your meatball recipe; you’re making the meal with lots of love straight from the heart…and hands!

You gotta get foundational by diving right in the meat mixture, blending the ingredients and forming each meatball!

Some will tell you to use an ice cream scoop to form your turkey meatballs. Don’t bother getting another kitchen utensil dirty.

Turkey Meatballs over spaghetti on a white plate

Pour yourself a glass of wine and each time you wash your hands between rolling and stirring the sauce, take a sip.  That routine will equate to at least one full glass while making this meal. Be sure to refill your glass again while the sauce simmers.

My husband, son, and son’s girlfriend ate their meatballs with spaghetti, but I was craving some veggies and thought I would try something different for myself. I served my meat over lightly stir-fried broccoli slaw.

Broccoli Slaw with Turkey Meatballs - The Foodie Affair

Meatballs With Broccoli Slaw

LOVE the combination! I used pre-packaged Mann’s Broccoli Cole Slaw, which is genius product for me since I would never be able to chop my broccoli into perfect matchstick pieces!

Plus, I banned myself from ever touching a mandolin slicer or having one in my house after I nearly took my finger off slicing a tomato!

To prepare the slaw, all I did was on medium heat stir-fry the slaw in some olive oil just until it began to slightly soften, still holding its form.

That was it! It was still firm, so believe it or not, eating it resembled the same texture as pasta!

Turkey meatballs over broccoli slaw in a white bowl

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Turkey meatballs over pasta

Turkey Meatballs

Turkey meatballs in a delicious homemade sauce. Serve this traditional Italian meal over pasta or for a low carb version serve over broccoli slaw or spiraled zucchini.
5 from 6 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Main Dish
Cuisine: Italian
Keyword: dinner, meatballs, pasta, turkey
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Additional Time: 12 minutes
Total Time: 42 minutes
Servings: 6 servings
Author: Sandra Shaffer



  • 1 cup plain breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 cup parmesan finely grated
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh Italian parsley chopped
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper ground
  • 2 large eggs lightly beaten
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 small onion chopped finely
  • 1 pound ground dark turkey meat
  • 1 pound Italian turkey sausage spicy
  • extra virgin olive oil for drizzling over meat when cooking


  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 large garlic cloves chopped
  • 1 medium onion chopped finely
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 3/4 cup fresh basil chopped
  • 2 teaspoons ground fennel seeds
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 2 28- ounce containers crushed tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup red wine optional
  • Pasta or 1 package broccoli slaw


  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees and line a cookie sheet with foil and lightly spray with non-stick cooking spray. Set aside.
  • Cook sauce first to let flavors blend as long as possible. In a large deep skillet over medium high heat warm the olive oil. Add the onions, garlic salt and pepper and cook until onion is limp and fragrant. Add 1/2 cup of the basil, fennel, oregano tomatoes brining to a simmer. Cook over medium heat stirring occasionally while preparing meatballs. Stir in remaining basil and wine (optional) when adding meatballs.
  • For the meatballs, in a large bowl blend together the breadcrumbs, parmesan cheese, basil, parsley, milk, tomato paste, salt, pepper, eggs, garlic and onions. Add the turkey meat and sausage gently mixing into the breadcrumb mix with your fingers until combined. Form the meat mixture into 1 1/2-inch balls (approximately 24). Place meatballs on prepared baking sheet and drizzle olive oil on top. Bake until cooked for 12-15 minutes. Once cooked add to sauce.
  • Serve with spaghetti noodles or for a carb-free option, steam or stir-fried broccoli slaw.


Please note that the nutritional information provided are guidelines and may vary based on the brand of products used. For your specific nutritional goals use My Fitness Pal or Verywell Fit recipe calculators. All content within this site is not intended as medical diagnosis or treatment and should not be considered a substitute for professional medical expertise.

Recipe adapted from Food Network with Giada De Laurentiis.

Turkey meatballs in red sauce over spaghetti
Hugs Sandra Signature

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  1. We have spaghetti and meatballs a lot but I have never tried it with Turkey…. these look SO DELICIOUS, I will have to try them next time! <3

  2. I love, love the idea of serving meatballs over slaw! I love spaghetti squash, too, but it’s not always available. Great tip!

  3. Serving the meatballs ontop of broccoli slaw is genius! Love this idea. When I eat pasta, more often then not, I mix in some arugula or fresh spinach. Both taste so good with italian flavors! Love this classic meatball recipe too!

  4. Meatballs are very common in Greece too. We bake them, fry them and put them in red sauce too! We usually make them with ground veal but I love your turkey ones. Much healthier!