Polynesian Turkey Meatballs ~ And Family Dinner ~ By Bonnie Banters


Makes approx. 16 ea. 2" meatballs - about 6 to 8 servings


  • Non-stick cooking spray
  • 1 pkg. 20 oz. ground turkey
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 2 c. instant white or brown rice, uncooked
  • 1 ea. 20 oz. can crushed pineapple in juice, drained & divided (juice reserved)
  • 1 c. green onion, thinly sliced (tops & all), divided
  • 1/2 c. teriyaki sauce, divided
  • 1 egg, slightly beaten
  • 1/4 c. orange marmalade
  • 1 ea. 20 oz. can  pineapple chunks in juice, drained (juice reserved)
  • 1/4 c. seeded & chopped plum or roma tomato (for garnish)


  1. Preheat the oven to 350º.
  2. Spray a foil-lined baking sheet that has sides with the non-stick cooking spray.
  3. In a large bowl, mix the turkey, salt, black pepper, ginger, nutmeg, rice, 1/2 c. (drained) crushed pineapple, 1/2 c. green onion, 1/4 c. teriyaki sauce and egg.  
  4. Using your hands, shape the turkey mixture into approximately 2" balls, being careful not to over handle. 
  5. Place the meatballs on the baking sheet and bake approximately 25 minutes, or until done.
  6. While the meatballs are baking, make the sauce:  In a medium saucepan, combine the remaining crushed pineapple and reserved juice, the rest of the teriyaki sauce and the orange marmalade.  Heat to boiling and reduce the heat to simmer.  Add the (drained) pineapple chunks and cook uncovered approximately 3 to 4 minutes.  Stir in 1/4 c. green onion.
  7. On a serving dish, place the meatballs over hot-cooked rice and top with the sauce.  In a small microwave-proof bowl, heat the juice from the pineapple chunks in the microwave on high for about 10 seconds, or until warm, and pour over the dish.  
  8. Garnish with the remaining green onion and tomato.

©Bonnie Banters ™.  All rights reserved.

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  • The original recipe suggested ground turkey or chicken.  I've not made this with the ground chicken.
  • I confess I used a heavy-duty mixer for the meatballs and gently combined, but the consensus is that hand mixing creates lighter meatballs.  I was happy with the results using a mixer; but whatever your choice, just don't over process.
  • Running cool water for your hands helps while shaping the meatballs.
  • For even more flavor, you can try browning the meatballs in a little oil on the stove top before baking and adjusting the oven time as necessary.  I would have tried this if I'd thought of it before I started; but I was still pleased with the final results of just baking.  Also, you can save time and calories by not browning first on the stove top.

Your family will love a taste of the islands in the middle of the week, and you'll enjoy how easy it is to take them there!

©Bonnie Banters™.  All rights reserved.

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