Mini Turkey Meatballs with Easy Cranberry Sauce Dip is a great (freezer-friendly!!) make ahead party appetizer.
It’s holiday party time!!! Woohoo! We host a holiday party every year and while I do try not to stress about it and serve bagels with all the fixings, last year we completely ran out of food. Embarrassing for a food blogger. I’ve made the resolution to have ample food that I can make ahead and either reheat or quickly deal with the day of our party. Enter sage filled Mini Turkey Meatballs with a super Easy Cranberry Sauce Dip. It’s like Christmas in every bite!
Make ahead and freezer-friendly appetizers seem to be an elusive bunch. Desserts? Super easy. Cake and cupcakes freeze so well and that desserts get made first around here and then I’m left scrambling for tasty and appropriately seasonal bites to share. I’m thinking these easy Manchego, Ham and Olive Bites should happen again, but truthfully I was at a loss for a longtime trying to find a recipe that I could park in the freezer for a few weeks before our event.
There was the epic gougères fail. I have no idea why I kept trying to make a temperamental recipe work when I don’t have the time. I needed a reality check bad and thankfully found one fairly quickly that lead me down this mini meatball train. Plus, how many moms have time for a temperamental recipe? I also tried to make a turkey meatball with a cranberry in it, wrapped in a sage leaf, but it ended up looking like an ugly snail (I know, how could I make snails uglier than normal, right? Somehow I did).
I’m going to try to make and freeze some Potstickers as well. Have you tried this? Let me know if you have a recipe that you turn to. I may try this potsticker recipe as the whole hoisin and cabbage scene is right up our alley – my kids love that combo. And since our party is kid-friendly I need lots of age appropriate food.
These Mini Turkey Meatballs would be amazing in some tomato sauce on top of pasta. The sage and garlic are a really nice flavour to stand alone, but if you make a double batch of these, part of it could go to dinner one night and the rest to party planning.
Mini Turkey Meatballs with Easy Cranberry Dip is a great (freezer-friendly!!) make ahead party appetizer.
- 1.5 lbs (681 gr) ground turkey meat thigh preferred
- 14 gr (approx. 8 large leaves) sage leaves finely chopped
- 1 large egg
- 1 clove garlic minced or finely grated
- 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 340 gr cranberries frozen or fresh
- 1 zest and juice medium navel orange
- 1/3 cup maple syrup
- 1 pinch kosher salt
Preheat oven to 375° F. Line a baking tray with non-stick paper.
In a medium bowl crack egg and lightly beat. Mix with sage, garlic, pepper, and salt until well combined. Add turkey and mix until combined.
Using a tablespoon measuring spoon, scoop a level amount of turkey mixture and roll into a small ball. Place on baking tray, spaced about 1/2-1" apart from other meatballs. Repeat until all turkey mixture is gone (makes 30-40 mini meatballs depending upon how you large roll them).
Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until turkey meat is cooked through (needs to hit an internal temperature of 165° F) and meatballs are starting to brown.
Meanwhile, please cranberries, orange zest and juice, maple syrup, and salt in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to a low. Cook at a simmer for 10-15 minutes or until cranberries start to breakup.
Remove from heat and mash with a potato masher (or blend in a blender for a smoother texture).
Place in a bowl and serve alongside mini meatballs.
Meatballs and sauce can be frozen up to 1 month before serving.
To serve: defrost meatballs and sauce overnight in refrigerator. Reheat meatballs in oven at 325° F for 10 minutes.
Serve sauce cold or simply reheat in a saucepan if desired.