Mini Mozzarella Stuffed Turkey Zucchini Meatball Orrechiette

mini mozzarella stuffed turkey zucchini meatball orrechiette Entree
Mini Mozzarella Stuffed Turkey Zucchini Meatball Orrechiette
  • Prep 40 min
  • Total 60 min
  • Servings 8

Ground turkey meatballs packed with veggies and mozzarella cheese are the perfect complement for orecchiette pasta. MORE+ LESS-

Updated September 12, 2013
Progresso Breadcrumbs
Make with
Progresso Breadcrumbs



cup shredded zucchini (about 1 medium)
lb ground turkey
cup Progresso™ Italian style bread crumbs
cup grated red onion
tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
teaspoon salt
teaspoon pepper
cloves garlic, grated
About 1/2 cup pearl mozzarella


box (1 lb) orecchiette (tiny disk) pasta


tablespoons olive oil
cup finely chopped onion
cloves garlic, finely chopped
cans (14.5 oz each) Muir Glen™ organic fire roasted diced tomatoes, undrained
Salt and pepper to taste
tablespoons chopped fresh basil leaves


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  • 1
    Heat oven to 400°F. Line sheet pan with cooking parchment paper or silicone nonstick baking mat. Sprinkle grated zucchini lightly with salt; toss to coat. Set aside while preparing other ingredients.
  • 2
    Squeeze out as much of the zucchini liquid as you can; there will be a few tablespoons. Discard liquid.
  • 3
    In large bowl, gently mix all Meatball ingredients except mozzarella cheese until combined. To make each Meatball, scoop 1 teaspoonful mixture into hand; flatten into a patty. Place 1 mozzarella pearl in center of patty; enclose cheese completely inside mixture. With hands, roll into ball; place in pan. Repeat to make remaining meatballs.
  • 4
    Bake in center of oven about 20 minutes or until thermometer inserted in center of meatballs reads 165°F and cheese is melted.
  • 5
    Meanwhile, cook pasta to al dente as directed on box.
  • 6
    To make Sauce, in 10-inch skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add chopped onion; cook until translucent. Add chopped garlic; cook 60 seconds longer. Stir in tomatoes with liquid. Simmer until most of liquid has been reduced. Add salt and pepper to taste. Remove from heat; stir in basil.
  • 7
    Toss cooked pasta, meatballs and sauce. Garnish with additional fresh basil.

Expert Tips

  • You can make the meatballs ahead of time and freeze on a sheet pan in a single layer until frozen solid. Move the frozen meatballs to a resealable freezer plastic bag and freeze for 1 month. Bake the meatballs in a 400°F oven for about 30 minutes.
  • If you don’t have fresh basil, dried oregano is a great substitution in this pasta dish.
  • There are many sizes of mozzarella balls available today at most supermarkets. I used the smallest I could find, but use whatever size you like and make meatballs to correspond with your preferred size.

Nutrition Information

No nutrition information available for this recipe

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