A Little More Each Day

One working mama learning to run & to maintain my 100+ pound weight loss!

Italian meatball sliders

on August 30, 2014
This weekend, I tested out a Cooking Light recipe from the March 2012 issue that I’ve had flagged forever: Italian Meatball Sliders. I must confess that I took this recipe as inspiration more than following it exactly, thanks to a lack of time and a couple of key ingredients. It still turned out great, so I thought I’d share my modified version and the original (slightly more complicated) recipe down below.
This made 6 servings in our house of burgers that were sort of halfway between normal burger size and slider size. You could up or down size them as you like for true sliders or regular burgers.
In a bowl, gently mix:
1.25 lbs ground lean turkey
3 garlic cloves (I use the frozen cubes)
1/3 cup fat free ricotta cheese
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
1/4 cup diced roasted red pepper
2 tbsp Italian seasoning
1 large egg
Once all of the ingredients are incorporated, shape them into patties of your desired size. Be aware that this is very wet and sticky after you’ve mixed it, but they held together well for me when I cooked them so don’t let that put you off!
Cook on your grill or stovetop until cooked through. I used my Griddler (panini-press type device) and it took about 6-8 minutes.
Serve on the bread of your choice – English muffins were the perfect size for us – that has been popped under the broiler topped with slices of mozzarella cheese. As you can see in the picture, we also tried one with feta cheese and that worked well too!
Italian Meatball Sliders
Put a spoonful of your favorite marinara on the bread and cheeese, top with the patty and close the whole thing up. They were really tasty in combination and I think we didn’t lose anything significant in terms of taste but saved a lot of time! We’ll definitely try these out in the future with the Italian sausage mixed in, like the original recipe suggested, but for a weekday, these were a quick and tasty option!
PS We crumbled the leftover patties into our favorite marinara to beef (or turkey, as it were) up our spaghetti sauce for dinner last night and it worked great! I love repurposing leftovers into something new!
Cooking Light Original Recipe (March 2012)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil, divided
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 shallots, finely diced
  • 1/3 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 1/4 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs), toasted
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 8 ounces lean ground pork
  • 2 (4-ounce) links turkey Italian sausage, casings removed
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 1/2 cups lower-sodium marinara sauce
  • 12 slider buns, toasted
  • 12 basil leaves


  1. Heat 1 teaspoon oil in a large skillet over medium heat; swirl to coat. Add garlic and shallots to pan; sauté 3 minutes or until shallots are softened, stirring frequently. Combine shallot mixture, ricotta, and next 8 ingredients (through egg) in a medium bowl. Shape mixture into 12 (1-inch) meatballs; flatten each meatball slightly.
  2. Return pan to medium-high heat. Add remaining 2 teaspoons oil to pan. Add meatballs to pan; cook 6 minutes, turning once. Add marinara sauce; bring to a boil, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 8 minutes or until meatballs are done. Top bottom half of each bun with 1 1/2 tablespoons sauce, 1 meatball, 1 basil leaf, and top half of bun.

4 responses to “Italian meatball sliders

  1. Kristin says:

    Have a fabulous week!!! XOXO!!!

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