Carrot Meatballs With Mint Cauliflower Rice is an easy, 15-minute meal prep meatballs recipe loaded with Italian flavor and a hidden veggie. Pair it with lemon mint cauliflower rice for a filling, low-carb meal!
You know our obsession with meatballs is kind of insane. I mean, did you read our Ultimate Guide To Meatballs post? (#SorryNotSorry) We just love meatballs! They are quick, easy, can be done in a zillion different flavor profiles (have you tried our Thai Almond Butter Meatballs or our Greek Meatballs yet?), and can be cooked in a single pan! They are an all-around meal prep win, especially because you can also make them ahead of time and switch up the type of ground meat you use, based on what you have on hand. Flexible recipes like this one for carrot meatballs with mint cauliflower rice help get dinner on the table.
The Secret to Good Meatballs
More often than not, meatballs can go sideways in a couple of ways. They can either fall apart because they're not bound together well enough, or they come out kind of tough, from overhandling the meat mixture. In the worst case scenario—yikes—both things can happen. (Thankfully, you won't have that problem here!)
This recipe for carrot meatballs with mint cauliflower rice avoids those pitfalls, because the carrots add both moisture and flavor. What's more, the recipe manages to be gluten-free, because it doesn't require breadcrumbs. Score!
Should I Bake or Fry Meatballs?
Italian grandmas might debate the best way to make meatballs, but for the sake of this recipe, these carrot meatballs are small and therefore can be pan-fried pretty quickly in a skillet with some olive oil. Then, once they're cooked, we remove them from the skillet while the mint cauliflower rice cooks in the same pan. This keeps meal prep moving along efficiently, but cooking the rice in the same pan lends a lot of extra flavor to the "rice" and makes clean-up a breeze. Hurrah for #oneskilletdinners!
How to Make Cauliflower Rice
If you're new to this concept, we show you how to make cauliflower rice and introduce it to your meal prep repertoire elsewhere on this site. It's foolproof and, like the meatballs, can take on almost any flavors you want. Cauliflower, like eggs, is kind of a blank slate when it comes to cooking, which means you can pretty much never run out of ways to prep it. (It also freezes well, should you want to make a whole bunch ahead of time).
Of course, you can use whatever kind of starch-like side you like (white or brown rice); quinoa would also work, too. Whatever you do, just be sure to pair these tasty protein bombs with your favorite starch and vegetable for a healthy, wholesome, and super-easy lunch (or dinner)!
Bonus: This entire prep is less than $4 per serving. You're welcome! Leftovers reheat well, too, if for some reason you don't scarf these down!
READ MORE: 40 Meal Prep Recipes Under 400 Calories
Carrot Meatballs With Mint Cauliflower Rice Ingredients:
For the Meatballs
- 1 lb. lean ground beef, chicken, or turkey
- 1 large egg
- ½ cup grated carrots
- 1 tsp. Italian seasoning
- ½ tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
- Salt & pepper to taste
- 2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
For the Cauliflower Rice
- 4 cups riced cauliflower
- 1 tbsp. lemon juice
- 4 mint leaves
- Salt & pepper to taste
- ½ cup water