Moroccan Meatball Stuffed Pitas

Pitas stuffed with meatballs, hummus, and yogurt on plate with parsley

Hello, Beautiful!  Yep, these are some beautiful – and irresistible I might add – Moroccan Meatball Stuffed Pitas!  They are filled with homemade hummus, moist turkey meatballs made with warm Moroccan spices like ginger, turmeric, and coriander, and then topped with creamy, fresh and bright lemon yogurt sauce.  Moroccan Meatball Stuffed Pitas are incredibly easy to make, fun to stuff, and so delicious to eat.

 

The truth is, I haven’t made many Moroccan dishes, but one of the easiest ways to change up a dinner rut is to add new and different flavors.  Making meatballs from ground turkey instead of beef and adding new and different spices does just that!

So, what led me to Morocco you ask?  Well, I’ve been a little bit obsessed with ginger.  But when cooking with it, always find myself making some type of ginger stir fry.   So I really wanted to find a new way to use it, a new cuisine other than Asian.  Moroccan cuisine is known for its warm spices, one of which is ginger!  And the rest, as they say, is history…or in this case, MEATBALLS!

Oh, and in case I have intrigued you with ginger stir fry, check out these amazing recipes!

PREP AHEAD FOR YOUR MOROCCAN MEATBALL PITAS

While there are a few delicious components to these beautiful stuffed pitas, it all starts with the turkey meatballs.  The spices that give them that warm Moroccan flare are garlic, ginger, turmeric, coriander, and cayenne.

To ensure that all of these spices are evenly distributed into every single meatball, I like to first mix them with the egg to create the wet mixture.

Then, I mix them into the ground turkey with the parsley and bread crumbs.

Next, roll into small 1 inch meatballs.  You should get about 26 meatballs, so with 3-4 meatballs per pita, you get 7-8 half pitas stuffed!  Perfect for a family of 4-5 people.

Next comes the homemade Hummus!  This hummus is so simple and just lets the chickpeas do their job – taste amazing!  For this recipe, put the clove of garlic, the olive oil, and water into a food processor until smooth.  Then add the drained chickpeas and blend until smooth.  That’s it!

The yogurt sauce is equally as easy to make!  Just lemon zest, a little lemon juice, parsley, salt, and pepper.

COOK & ASSEMBLE YOUR MOROCCAN MEATBALL PITAS

First, cook them under the broiler for 5-6 minutes until they start to brown on top.

Then move them down to center rack and turn the oven to 375 to bake for 15 minutes.  They should be golden brown from the turmeric and other spices when done.

Next, warm up the pitas in the oven and start filling.  First fill with the hummus, add 3-4 meatballs, top with the lemon yogurt sauce, garnish with parsley and ENJOY!

Moroccan Meatball Stuffed Pitas

Moroccan Meatball Stuffed Pitas are filled with homemade hummus, moist turkey meatballs made with warm Moroccan spices like ginger, turmeric, and coriander, and then topped with creamy, fresh and bright lemon yogurt sauce.  Easy, Fun, Delicious, and Good for You!

Course Main Course
Cuisine Moroccan
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 4 people
Calories 730 kcal
Author Carrie Tyler

Ingredients

Moroccan Turkey Meatballs

  • 1 lb White Meat Ground Turkey, free range, raised without antibiotics
  • 3/4 cup breadcrumbs
  • 1 Egg
  • 2 cloves Garlic
  • 3 tsp Ginger, minced
  • 1 tsp Turmeric
  • 1 tsp Ground Coriander
  • 1/2 tsp Ground Cayenne Pepper
  • 2 Tbls Parsley, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1/2 tsp Fresh Ground Pepper
  • 1 tsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Hummus

  • 1 can Chickpeas
  • 1 Tbls Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 clove Garlic
  • 1/4 cup water

Lemon Yogurt Sauce

  • 5 oz Plain Greek Yogurt
  • 1 Lemon
  • 1 tsp Parsley, finely chopped
  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • Fresh Ground Pepper, to taste

Other

  • 4 Pita Breads, cut in half
  • 2 Tbls Parsley, chopped for garnish

Instructions

Prep-Ahead: Ingredients

  1. Mince 2 cloves garlic.

  2. Peel and mince about 1 inch piece of ginger to get 2 tsp.  

  3. Chop 5 tbls parsley...2 tbls for the meatballs, 1 tbls for the lemon yogurt sauce, 2 for garnish.

Prep-Ahead: Meatballs

  1. To a small mixing bowl, add 1 egg, the 2 cloves minced garlic, 2 tsp minced ginger, 1/2 tsp Turmeric, 1 tsp Ground Coriander, 1/2 tsp Cayenne Pepper, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 fresh ground pepper.  Mix together thoroughly with a fork.

  2. To a large mixing bowl, add the Ground Turkey, the egg and spice mixture, the 2 Tbls chopped parsley, and the 3/4 cup bread crumbs.  Using your hands or a large fork, mix to thoroughly combine.

  3. Make small meatballs that are about an inch in diameter.  Recipe makes approximately 26 meatballs.  At this point, you can store them in the fridge, freeze them or cook them.

Prep-Ahead: Hummus and Yogurt Sauce

  1. To a food processor, add 1 clove garlic, 1 tbls extra virgin olive oil, 1/4 tsp fresh ground pepper, and 1/4 cup water. Blend until smooth.  Rinse and drain 1 can of chickpeas.  Add them to the food processor and blend until smooth.

  2. Zest the entire lemon, then quarter.  To a small bowl, add the yogurt, the lemon zest and the juice from 1 quarter of the lemon.  Add 1 tsp chopped parsley.  Mix and then add salt and fresh ground pepper to taste.

Cook and Assemble

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.  Drizzle a tsp of olive oil on a large sheet pan and rub it around to coat the bottom.

  2. Turn the oven setting to broil and place the turkey meatballs under the broiler for 5-6 minutes or just until starting to brown.

  3. Then move down to center rack and turn oven setting back to Bake at 375 degrees.  Bake for 15 minutes until internal temp reaches 165.

  4. Wrap pitas in aluminum and put in the oven to warm for the last 10 minutes of the meatball cooking time to warm through.

  5. Open the Pita Pocket, add the hummus, then the meatballs, top with yogurt sauce and parsley, and Enjoy!

Garbanzo & Black Bean Cakes with Cucumber Yogurt Sauce

Garbanzo & Black Bean Cakes with a cool Cucumber Yogurt Sauce and a light and flavorful Lemon Quinoa Salad on the side is today’s YUMMY recipe!  I love the contrast of warm food with a cool sauce and these bean cakes with cucumber yogurt sauce are just up my alley! The cakes are loaded with Garbanzo Beans (Chickpeas) and Black Beans so you get this hearty texture that is crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside.  These cakes are baked rather than fried because I think you get just as much flavor without all the fat. But of course, you can fry them if you prefer.

Yogurt Sauce to Die For!

Combined with the tangy and cool yogurt sauce that gives you a touch of crunch from the cucumbers and freshness from the lemon zest, each bite is heaven!  This lemony, cucumber yogurt sauce recipe is great with so many different foods too.  Top it on chicken, add it to salads, or dip pita with hummus into it…Yum!

Finally the Quinoa Salad is light and fresh with a simple lemon dressing, fresh red pepper, and scallions for a peppery bite. Amazing and good for you!

This dish is Vegetarian, but because of the flour used as a binder, it is not Gluten-Free.  However, simply substitute the flour for a gluten-free alternative like almond flour, rice flour, or more parmesan cheese!

I hope you try this recipe and love it as much as I do!

Carrie

Chickpea & Black Bean Cakes with Quinoa Salad

Garbanzo & Black Bean Cakes with a light and flavorful Lemon Quinoa Salad and Yogurt Sauce is a delicious vegetarian meal!  I love the contrast of warm food with a cool sauce and these bean cakes with cucumber yogurt sauce are just up my alley! The cakes are loaded with Garbanzo Beans (Chickpeas) and Black Beans so you get this crunchy-on-the-outside, soft-on-the-inside texture. They are salty and hearty. Combined with the tangy and cool yogurt sauce that gives you a touch of crunch from the cucumbers, each bite is heaven! These cakes are baked rather than fried because I think you get just as much flavor without all the fat. But of course, you can fry them if you prefer. Finally the Quinoa Salad is light and fresh with a simple lemon dressing, fresh red pepper, and scallions for a peppery bite. Amazing and good for you!

Course Main Course
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 2 people
Author Carrie Tyler

Ingredients

Chickpea and Black Bean Cakes

  • 1/2 can Chickpeas 15oz can
  • 1/2 can Black Beans 15oz can
  • 1/4 cup Parsley, flat leaf
  • 1 clove Garlic, minced
  • 1/4 tsp Cumin, ground
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1/2 tsp Ground Pepper
  • 1 Egg, whites only
  • 2 Tbls All-purpose White Flour
  • 2 Tbls Parmesan, grated
  • 2 Scallion, white only thinly sliced

Quinoa Lemon Salad

  • 1 cup Quinoa
  • 1/4 Red Pepper, diced
  • 1/2 Zest from 1 Lemon
  • 1/2 Lemon, juice from half lemon
  • 2 Scallion, greens only finely sliced
  • Salt and Ground Pepper to taste

Lemon Cucumber Yogurt

  • 1/2 cup Plain Greek Yogurt
  • 2 Tbls Cucumber, finely diced
  • 1/2 Zest from 1 Lemon
  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • Dash Ground Pepper

Instructions

Cook and Cool Quinoa

  1. This can be made 1-3 days in advance.  Rinse 1 cup quinoa under warm water in a strainer.  Add to 2 cups water and a pinch of salt in a sauce pot.  Bring to a boil, stir, then reduce heat to a low simmer, cover and cook for 20 minutes.  After 20 minutes, turn off heat, move to a cool location or fridge and let sit covered while cooling.

  2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F

Chickpea and Black Bean Cakes

  1. Drain the chickpeas and the black beans and rinse.  Rough chop the parsley.  Rough chop the garlic clove.  Thinly slice the scallions and keep the greens separated for the Quinoa Salad.  The whites to be used for the cakes.

  2. Add the beans, parsley, and garlic to a food processor and pulse to grind together.  

  3. Scoop the bean mixture into a bowl and mix with the cumin, egg white, 2 Tbls flour, scallion, and 2 Tbls parmesan cheese, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp pepper.  Form into 4 balls.  

  4. Place the balls on baking sheet rubbed with Olive Oil.  Press each down into a round cake.  Bake in oven for 10 minutes then flip and bake another 10 minutes.

  5. Bean cakes should be lightly browned on both sides when done.

Cucumber Yogurt Sauce

  1. Finely dice the cucumber and add it to the yogurt in a small bowl.  Zest the lemon and split the zest with half for the yogurt and half for the quinoa salad.  Mix the lemon zest, add salt and pepper.

Make Quinoa Salad

  1. Dice the red pepper.  Then in a bowl, combine the cooled Quinoa, red pepper, sliced scallion greens, remaining lemon zest, juice of half the lemon, salt and pepper to taste.

Plate

  1. Place the Quinoa salad on plate, then top with bean cakes.  Spoon the cucumber yogurt sauce over the top.  Enjoy!