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Summer baked meatballs with kale and juicy tomato sauce

Berleena Eberle for Brenda Janschek
Lunchbox friendly, batch and freeze
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 40 mins


  • Meatballs
  • 1 kg grass fed organic beef mince (ground)
  • 2 eggs
  • 4 cloves of garlic finely chopped (reserved half for tomato sauce)
  • 1 large brown onion grated or finely chopped, can use food processor (reserve half for tomato sauce)
  • 1 cup of kale leaves stripped and chopped finely
  • 1 tspn ground cumin or seeds
  • 1 tspn ground cinnamon
  • ½ tbsp of dried or fresh dill
  • Zest from 1 lemon
  • 1/2 cup of sourdough bread chopped into small pieces
  • Salt and cracked black pepper to taste
  • 1/2 tspn olive oil
  • Basil for garnish
  • Parmesan cheese to taste
  • Tomato Sauce
  • 1 tspn olive oil
  • 1.5 cups of passata sauce
  • 3/4 cup stock or broth
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 sprigs basil finely chopped
  • 200 g spelt pasta ½ cauliflower (grated to make rice) or 3 medium zucchinis (spiralized)


  • Preheat oven to 200 degrees. Line a baking tray with baking paper.
  • To make the meatballs, combine the mince, eggs, half the garlic and onion, kale, cumin, cinnamon, dill, lemon rind, bread, salt and pepper in a bowl. Let the mixture sit for a few minutes so the kale and breadcrumbs can absorb some of the moisture.
  • Roll meatballs into balls and set on baking tray, brush with olive oil. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden on top.
  • To make the tomato sauce, saute the remaining onion in oil for 1-2 mins in a large saucepan. Add the garlic, stirring for a further minute. Add passata sauce, broth and apple cider vinegar, season well with salt and pepper. Let sauce simmer on low heat for 5 mins.
  • Add the meatballs to the sauce and simmer on low heat for a further 5-10 mins. Turn off heat and mix through basil.
  • Serve meatballs on a bed of spelt pasta, cauliflower rice or spiralized zucchini of your choice, drizzle tomato sauce on top, garnish with fresh basil and parmesan cheese.