Mediterranean Meatball and Orzo Bowls Recipe | Yummly

Mediterranean Meatball and Orzo Bowls

Kelly S.: "It was pretty good. But not so much for the rest…" Read More
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Jazz up moist homemade meatballs, seasoned with lemon and fresh dill, with store-bought tzatziki sauce, fresh vegetables, and orzo and you’ve got a home-run one-bowl dinner. Even better: We tell you how to customize the bowls for picky and more adventurous eaters. The recipe is a Yummly original created by Ashley Strickland Freeman.


  • 1 pound ground turkey thigh (not turkey breast)
  • 1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 large egg
  • 3 garlic cloves (minced)
  • lemon zest (from 1 lemon, about 1 teaspoon; save juice for orzo)
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill (for meatballs)
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt (plus more to taste)
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (for meatballs)
  • 12 ounces orzo pasta (12 ounces is 1 1/2 cups)
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil (for orzo)
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons fresh dill (leaves)
  • 1 pint grape tomatoes (halved)
  • 1 English cucumber (cut into chunks)
  • 1 1/2 cups pitted kalamata olives (halved)
  • 1 small red onion (thinly sliced)
  • 12 ounces tzatziki sauce (store-bought)
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    1. Make the meatballs: In a medium bowl, gently stir together the ground turkey, panko, egg, garlic, lemon zest, dill for meatballs, oregano, cumin, salt, and pepper. Shape mixture into 12 equal meatballs, each a mounded 2 tablespoons.
    2. Begin heating a large pot of water.
    3. Heat the olive oil for meatballs in a large skillet over medium-high heat until hot. Add the meatballs and cook, turning occasionally, until the meatballs are browned on all sides and cooked through, about 10 minutes (cut to check). Set aside and keep warm.
    4. While the meatballs brown, cook the orzo in boiling water according to package directions until al dente. Drain, transfer to a bowl, and stir in the olive oil for orzo. Remove some orzo for the children’s plates. Add the lemon juice and dill for orzo to the remaining orzo, and toss to coat. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
    5. For the children’s plates, place the plain orzo, meatballs, and desired vegetables (from the tomatoes, cucumber, olives, and red onion) on their plates. Serve with a side of tzatziki sauce. For the adults' plates, divide the seasoned orzo evenly between serving bowls. Top with tzatziki and meatballs. Toss together the tomatoes, cucumber, olives, and onion and serve with orzo and meatballs.
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    NutritionView More

    Sodium50% DV1200mg
    Fat43% DV28g
    Protein75% DV38g
    Carbs27% DV82g
    Fiber32% DV8g
    Calories730Calories from Fat250
    Total Fat28g43%
    Saturated Fat6g30%
    Trans Fat
    Calories from Fat250
    Total Carbohydrate82g27%
    Dietary Fiber8g32%
    Vitamin A20%
    Vitamin C35%

    * Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.


    Kelly S. 25 days ago
    It was pretty good. But not so much for the rest of my family. We are gluten free, so I used gluten free penne (was going to try rice). I made homemade tzatziki sauce which was good. There meatballs were really good and I loved all the different flavors. I would try it again with rice instead.
    Diana a month ago
    Delicious! Family crowd pleaser. Used shallot in the tomato & cucumber salad instead of red onion and used black olives since I didn’t have kalamata and still worked! Did not add dill to the lemon orzo but added to the salad
    Mesagna a month ago
    sooooooooo good. fast, easy, delicious.
    Vic Grivas a month ago
    Delicious recipe. I altered it slightly to suit my taste, and made my own tzatziki because it's easy and delicious, but my family loved it. Make sure you add plenty of fresh dill and lemon juice (and zest) to the orzo while it's hot.
    Tiffany Lauren a month ago
    Super fast and very delicious! The kids loved the bowls even with the veggies added. Shocked at how juicy turkey meatballs are!