Portobello Hummus

It’s been far too long since I’ve brought you a homemade hummus recipe.

Portobello Hummus | CaliGirlCooking.com

So today we’re changing that! This Portobello Hummus will make any hummus hater do a complete 180 (true story) and want to eat chow down on this healthy snack nonstop.


But first, how was your weekend? This was the second weekend in a row we stayed in town (shocker, I know) and I have to say we’re kind of getting in the groove of this whole relaxing and having no plans thing. We did have a couple of fun activities up our sleeve, though. If you were following along on my Insta stories, you probably saw that we took a little road trip out to Ojai for a friends’ birthday party at Topa Mountain Winery. We always have a blast spending time in the quiet little mountain town. It’s a great escape from the hustle and bustle of Santa Barbara and is literally just 45 minutes away.

Other than that, I had a work meeting on Sunday and we literally just relaxed, which was amazzzzing. After a year of wedding planning, wedding-related activities, starting my own business and tons of travel, I’ve realized I almost forgot what relaxing is! I’m soaking it all in while I can because who knows how long this will last 😉

One other thing we did this weekend was eat a TON of this Portobello Hummus. I mean, we’re talking two of my favorite things coming together in one healthy snack. What could be better?

Portobello Hummus | CaliGirlCooking.com

If you’ve been reading the blog for any significant amount of time, you’ll know that I’m no stranger to fun flavor combos in my hummus. During the fall pumpkin season, I love whipping up this perfectly spiced Pumpkin Curry Hummus. Once we get into the warmer weather months, I tend to make this zesty Mango Sriracha Hummus. But my go-to year-round flavor has always been this Roasted Cauliflower Hummus with Rosemary and Garlic. Until now, that is! With the addition of this tasty Portobello Hummus, I now have TWO all-weather hummus flavors up my sleeve to whip up at a moment’s notice. And so do you!

So here’s the trick with this hearty, savory Portobello Hummus: You’ve GOT to saute the Portobello mushrooms in a luxurious bath of olive oil, salt and pepper before adding them to the white bean mixture. This gives the hummus a much deeper, more intense flavor than if you were to just add raw Portobellos to the mix.

It also gives the hummus an incredibly silky texture, which is part of the reason my sister-in-law’s dad was found dipping his carrot sticks in it when he is an alleged hummus-hater. He claimed that he usually doesn’t like hummus because it is “gritty,” but he said this was nice and smooth and full of flavor. I think I may have made a convert out of him!

Portobello Hummus | CaliGirlCooking.com

[It is worth noting that I also used Great Northern beans instead of the usual garbanzo beans in this recipe, which could have been another contributing factor to the consistency of the dip.]

The other keys to this tasty, creamy spread are what have come to be my go-to’s for almost any homemade hummus I make – fresh garlic and rosemary!  I seriously don’t know what it is, but these two ingredients are natural compliments to the white beans and tahini and make a WORLD of a difference in almost all of the hummus I’ve made.

Aside from the key ingredients I mentioned above, all you’ll need to make this delicious Portobello Hummus is some olive oil, lemon juice and the requisite tahini. Oh, and some salt and pepper (always) and a food processor or high-powered blender. That’s it!

What I love about homemade hummus is that it’s such an easy, healthy snack to whip up in no time at all, and most of the ingredients are things you’ll already have on hand in your pantry. In just as much time as it takes to go to the store and buy some big brand hummus with who knows how many ingredients, you can mix up a batch of Portobello Hummus where you have complete control over what goes into it.

Portobello Hummus | CaliGirlCooking.com

That looks like the perfect weekday treat if I’ve ever seen one!

Portobello Hummus | CaliGirlCooking.com
Print
Portobello Hummus
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
8 mins
Total Time
18 mins
 

The ever-popular hummus gets a huge flavor boost from sauteed Portobello mushrooms and fresh garlic and rosemary. The perfect healthy snack!

Course: Snack
Servings: 2 cups
Author: CaliGirl Cooking
Ingredients
  • 5 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 2 medium Portobello mushrooms, diced
  • 1 15-ounce can Great Northern white beans
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 tablespoon tahini
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • Salt and pepper
Instructions
  1. Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a saute pan over medium heat. Add diced Portobello mushrooms and sprinkle on salt and pepper. Saute mushrooms until soft and fragrant. Turn off heat.

  2. Combine beans, garlic, rosemary, tahini and lemon juice in a food processor. Add sautéed Portobello mushrooms and pulse until mixture begins to break down. With food processor on, slowly stream in remaining 3 tablespoons of olive oil. Continue pureeing until hummus is smooth. 

  3. Add salt and pepper to taste and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before serving. Serve with crackers, pita chips or fresh cut veggies. 

Portobello Hummus | CaliGirlCooking.com

Homemade Whole Wheat Crackers: Two Ways!

I’m about to blow your mind.

Homemade Whole Wheat Crackers: Two Ways! | CaliGirlCooking.com

Because today I’m bringing you a super easy recipe for Homemade Whole Wheat Crackers, and starting you out with two flavor combinations that will make you never want to use store-bought crackers ever again. That’s right, I’m taking your cheese and charcuterie platters to a whole new level.


Do you ever fantasize about being a domestic goddess that has her world super together and the energy to make all her foods from scratch? I sure do. When I was working a 9-to-5 desk job, I’d often sit there are think “When I quit my job and work for myself full time, I’ll make homemade bread and homemade energy bars and homemade fruit snacks…” or, “When I have kids, I’ll make all their food from scratch and sneak in all the veggies and superfoods and they’ll love it and will eat everything I give them” (ha!) You get the idea.

Now that I AM working for myself, I’ve had a bit more time to work on this “food from scratch” idea, but it’s been a bit of a slow process. I’ve been making more yeasted breads, overnight breakfast pastries and homemade ice creams, and I must admit they’ve all been so much better than the store-bought versions, but I still find myself taking the “easy out” more often than not. But having checked quite a few of these “To Conquer” items off of my list, I decided it was finally time to tackle one essential that we ALWAYS have on hand because of our deep love for all things cheese and charcuterie – homemade crackers!

Homemade Whole Wheat Crackers: Two Ways! | CaliGirlCooking.com

This actually wasn’t the first time I’ve made homemade crackers. Back in December, I made a few batches of Molly Yeh’s Slice and Bake Cheese Crackers to take to our parents’ houses for the holidays, which were a huge hit. But as much as I loved those (because, CHEESE) I wanted to come up with a cracker recipe that could pair with ANY type of cheese (or meat, or fruit spread, etc.)

My initial internet research led me to this article from TheKitchn: “How to Make Crackers at Home,” and I used this along with a couple other bloggers’ recipes for inspiration in making my own version of Homemade Whole Wheat Crackers.

Homemade Whole Wheat Crackers: Two Ways! | CaliGirlCooking.com

And let’s talk about the whole “Two Ways” thing, because it may just be the best part of this recipe! Yes, I wanted my crackers to pair well with all cheeses, but that doesn’t mean we can’t jazz them up a bit! I chose two flavors that I felt would really compliment most (if not all) types of cheese – hard or soft, stinky or sharp.

I laced my first batch of cracker dough with chopped fresh rosemary, then topped the crackers with Maldon sea salt. Yum!!

I left the second batch of dough plain, but then topped the finished crackers with my new favorite product from Trader Joe’s – Everything But the Bagel Sesame Seasoning Blend! Seriously, if you have a TJ’s anywhere near you, I highly recommend you go out and grab a jar of this right away. (It’s also a new favorite of mine for jazzing up avocado toast!) If you don’t have a TJ’s near you, you can hit up Amazon, or TheKitchn’s got you covered yet again with this article on How To Make Everything Bagel Spice. Even if you have to make your own, it is soooo worth having on hand.

The process of making this Homemade Whole Wheat Crackers is as easy (if not easier) than making a batch of cookies. Once you have the technique down, you’ll be pumping out dozens of crackers in under an hour. So worth making for your next party!

Homemade Whole Wheat Crackers: Two Ways! | CaliGirlCooking.com

The one thing I will say about this recipe is that, unlike store-bought crackers that are usually pumped full of preservatives, these crackers won’t keep for weeks on end. I highly recommend eating them within a couple of days of making them, or they may get a little chewy. This will also happen if your cracker dough is too thick when you cut it. Really make sure it’s thin enough so you get that fantastic crisp!

Homemade Whole Wheat Crackers: Two Ways! | CaliGirlCooking.com

And with these pointers, I leave you with the recipe(s). I hope you enjoy making these as much as I did!

This post contains affiliate links. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own. Thank you for continuing to support the brands that make CaliGirl Cooking possible!

Homemade Whole Wheat Crackers: Two Ways! | CaliGirlCooking.com
Print
Homemade Whole Wheat Crackers: Two Ways!
Prep Time
25 mins
Cook Time
10 mins
Total Time
35 mins
 

A simple homemade whole wheat cracker recipe with two flavor-filled variations - Rosemary Sea Salt and Everything Bagel!

Course: Appetizer, Snack
Servings: 2 dozen
Author: CaliGirl Cooking
Ingredients
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup milk
For the Rosemary Sea Salt Crackers:
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons fresh rosemary, chopped
  • Maldon sea salt
For the Everything Bagel Crackers:
  • Everything But the Bagel Sesame Seasoning Blend OR
  • Homemade Everything Bagel Spice
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Cover two large baking sheets with parchment paper. 

  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flours, salt and rosemary (if using.) Add the oil and milk.

  3. Divide the dough in half so it’s easier to work with. Take the first half of the dough and roll it out to about 1/8-inch thickness on a floured surface or another sheet of parchment paper. 

  4. Using a 2-inch round culinary ring or cookie cutter, cut out the crackers. Gather and re-roll dough as needed until you have cut as many circles as you can.

  5. Brush crackers lightly with water using a pastry brush and add toppings (sea salt or Everything Bagel Seasoning.) Place crackers on prepared baking sheet (they don’t have to be too far apart, they won’t spread too much) and bake in 450-degree oven for 10-12 minutes, or until crackers are just golden. 

  6. Remove from oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool. Let cool completely before transferring to a resealable container or plastic bag for storage. For best results, enjoy within a couple of days.

Recipe Notes

Head to TheKitchn to learn How to Make Everything Bagel Spice.

Homemade Whole Wheat Crackers- Two Ways! | CaliGirlCooking.com

Goat Cheese, Apricot and Pistachio Crostini with Honey

Sometimes bite-size foods are the best foods.

Goat Cheese, Apricot and Pistachio Crostini with Honey | CaliGirlCooking.com

These Goat Cheese, Apricot and Pistachio Crostini with Honey are no exception! They’re salty, sweet and tangy, and fit in the palm of your hand. They’re portable and the perfect addition to a cocktail party or get-together (did someone say Oscars?)


I’ve always been a snacker. When given the choice between a gigantic meal that will likely leave me bloated and sluggish or light snacks throughout the day, I’ll 100% of the time go for the latter. Plus, that way I get to try allll of the different things. Don’t pin me down, I want to taste all the food!

Speaking of snacking, the hubby and I are especially good at it on the weekends, and this past weekend (wait, are we still in “the weekend” since today is President’s Day?) was no exception. We were up in NorCal for a baby shower on Saturday, then took advantage of the long weekend and being so close to Napa and headed up to Wine Country on Sunday. We’re headed back to SB but will be back up in NorCal next weekend. It’s turning into quite the frequent commute for us, but we don’t mind the drive. We always joke that we’d rather make the 4-6 hour drive up to the Bay Area than the 2-3 hour drive down to LA because we never hit any traffic.

Anyhow, we really enjoyed seeing so many of our NorCal friends this past weekend. It seems like with the craziness of the holidays and the subsequent need to just hibernate and do nothing in the beginning of the new year, it’s been ages since we’ve seen everyone. Now we’re celebrating babies and multiple engagements and I can’t believe all of that has happened since we’ve last seen everyone!

Goat Cheese, Apricot and Pistachio Crostini with Honey | CaliGirlCooking.com

These Goat Cheese, Apricot and Pistachio Crostini with Honey are just the type of thing I like to make for casual get-togethers with our friends, no matter where we are. They’re pretty darn easy and require almost no actual cooking, so you can really whip them up anywhere. Might I also add that they’re the perfect things to munch on when you’re sipping on some delicious Napa wine? Let me tell you, these crostini and a crisp, refreshing Sauvignon Blanc are a match made in heaven.

The hardest part about this recipe is literally toasting up the sliced baguette to make crostini. If you can toast bread under a broiler without burning it, you’re in good shape. If not, just add the toppings to untoasted bread and these puppies will still taste absolutely divine.

Goat Cheese, Apricot and Pistachio Crostini with Honey | CaliGirlCooking.com

After you have your baguette slices toasted, simply spread each one with a hefty dollop of chevre (that’s creamy goat cheese for all you non-cheese snobs out there), top with the apricot and pistachio mixture, and drizzle on some honey. That’s it!

I’d also like to point out the absolutely necessity of a couple of things:

  1. Toast your nuts. I know, this technically requires more cooking, but it’s a must for ANY recipe that involves nuts. Just trust me.
  2. Chop your dried apricots. Nobody wants a crostini where they have to gnaw through a huge chunk of something so they can be sure to get a taste of it in every bit. Also, I’m a huge fan of the fatter, juicier dried apricots as opposed to the flatter, more dehydrated ones. They are definitely a must IMHO.

Goat Cheese, Apricot and Pistachio Crostini with Honey | CaliGirlCooking.com

Okay, now that you have the down-low on all that goes into these drool-inducing Goat Cheese, Apricot and Pistachio Crostini with Honey, I’ll let you get to it! It’s a holiday after all, so you deserve a little something to go along with that bottle of wine you’re sure to pop the cork on today 😉

Goat Cheese, Apricot and Pistachio Crostini with Honey | CaliGirlCooking.com
Print
Goat Cheese, Apricot and Pistachio Crostini with Honey
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
5 mins
Total Time
15 mins
 

These bite-size hors d'oevures are perfectly balanced with sweet, salt and tangy flavors. Pistachios, goat cheese and apricots are a match made in heaven!

Course: Appetizer
Author: CaliGirl Cooking
Ingredients
  • 1 baguette, thinly sliced on the bias
  • 6 ounces chevre (creamy goat cheese)
  • 1/2 cup chopped pistachio nutmeats, toasted
  • 1 cup dried apricots, finely chopped
  • 4 ounces honey (approximately)
Instructions
  1. Turn the broiler on high. Arrange the baguette slices on a sheet pan and place under the broiler for about 5 minutes, or until they become golden-brown. Keep a close eye on them, as they can get too dark in a matter of seconds. 

  2. Remove crostini from the oven and let cool slightly. Once cool enough to touch, spread about a tablespoon or so of the goat cheese on each piece. 

  3. Combine the pistachios and dried apricots in a small bowl, then sprinkle on top of each crostini. 

  4. Drizzle each piece with honey and serve immediately.

Goat Cheese, Apricot and Pistachio Crostini with Honey | CaliGirlCooking.com

Best EVER Winter Vegetable Platter

I bet you’d never imagine the words “best ever” in front of the words “vegetable platter,” but today I’m here to rock your world and prove to you that this is an incredibly appropriate statement.

Best EVER Winter Vegetable Platte | CaliGirlCooking.com

That’s right, I’m going to show you not only a vibrant array of winter vegetables (that don’t need to be cooked before enjoying) but TWO life-changing dipping sauces that are not only incredibly tasty, but VEGAN to boot. Hummus and queso, step aside. My Garlicky Cauliflower Almond Butter Dip and Thai Peanut Dipping Sauce are going to change your life.


But, before I get to these super-duper recipes, let’s talk a bit about a very important food event that’s coming up this weekend. Yes, I just referred to the Super Bowl as a food event as opposed to a sporting event, because when there isn’t really a specific team you’re rooting for, your focus turns directly to the snacks (and drinks!) that are being served. Am I right? It’s basically an excuse to make all of the delicious things (usually not so healthy) that you’ve been dreaming about since last year’s Super Bowl.

The good news is, this Best EVER Winter Vegetable Platter is both healthy AND delicious, and will satisfy all of your guests, no matter their dietary restrictions or preferences. This dish is both vegan and gluten-free, but even those who don’t follow either of these diets will find it a welcome healthy munch among all of the other not-so-healthy foods you might be serving (and have no fear, I have a not-so-healthy Super Bowl-friendly recipe coming to you on Wednesday – because we’re all about that balance, baby!)

Best EVER Winter Vegetable Platte | CaliGirlCooking.com

So let’s talk about how I came up with the ideas for the Garlicky Cauliflower Almond Butter Dip and Thai Peanut Dipping Sauce that grace this Best EVER Winter Vegetable Platter. You might recall that back in November I took a little trip to Wine Country with my gal Hana-Lee from Wander & Wine. During that trip, we were lucky enough to grab dinner at Press Restaurant in St. Helena.

While we were waiting for the first of our many dishes to arrive at the table, we were surprised with a large galvanized metal tray, with little veggie tops popping out of a bed of crushed ice. (We later found out that these cute little veggies came straight from the farm that Press has partnered with to provide all of its produce…Amazing!) Surrounding the tray were five little bowls of dipping sauces, and we were told to try our hand at all of the different vegetable and dip combinations. It was basically a vegetarian version of shrimp cocktail, genius!

Among all of the combinations I tried, one really stood out to me: fresh fennel bulb dipped into Press’ version of Thai peanut sauce. It was so dang good it was all I could think of even as we ate all of the other delicious dishes we ordered. I have to admit, the fennel and Thai peanut is a flavor combination I would have NEVER thought of, but it was amazing. I immediately added it to my list of flavor combos to try on my own at home.

Best EVER Winter Vegetable Platter Thai Peanut Dipping Sauce | CaliGirlCooking.com

I’m not quite so sure how I came up with the idea for my Garlicky Cauliflower Almond Butter Sauce, but I’ve been wanting to try my hand at making a Creamy Cauliflower Sauce a la Pinch of Yum for quite some time. I guess I figured almond butter would be a natural, delicious addition, along with some other spices and of course loads of garlic.

Best EVER Winter Vegetable Platter Garlicky Cauliflower Almond Butter Sauce | CaliGirlCooking.com

Once I had my sauces down, I knew I had to get some hearty, beautiful vegetables to stand up to their deliciousness. Fennel was a shoe-in, and after perusing the seasonal produce section at Trader Joe’s I decided on some beautiful rainbow carrots, crunchy radishes and slightly bitter Belgian endive to round out the tray. Not only were all of these vegetables just perfect with BOTH of the sauces, they also make a beautiful display that whoever you’re entertaining will not be able to keep their hands off of.

The great thing about this Best EVER Vegetable Platter is you can prep both of the sauces well in advance (up to three days.) The Garlicky Cauliflower Almond Butter Sauce makes a HUGE batch, so you’ll likely have a bunch leftover, but I highly recommend you take advantage of this by using it as a dairy-free creamy pasta sauce. Once you have the dipping sauces made, all that’s left if to find the freshest winter produce you can and use your food styling skills to really make your platter pop.

Best EVER Winter Vegetable Platter | CaliGirlCooking.com

Whether you whip this up for Super Bowl or not, it’s the perfect recipe to have in your arsenal for any time you’re entertaining a crowd with health concerns or varied dietary preferences. Make it now, make it later, doesn’t matter as long as you give it a shot as soon as you can!

5 from 1 vote
Best EVER Winter Vegetable Platte | CaliGirlCooking.com
Print
Best EVER Winter Vegetable Platter
Prep Time
50 mins
 

A classic vegetable platter gets a winter makeover with seasonal produce and two creamy, vegan dipping sauces. 

Course: Appetizer
Author: CaliGirl Cooking
Ingredients
For the Garlicky Cauliflower Almond Butter Dip:
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1/4 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 7 cups cauliflower florets (about 1 medium head of cauliflower)
  • 4 large cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 1/4 cup almond butter
  • 2 teaspoons white balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • Dash of cayenne
For the Thai Peanut Dipping Sauce:
  • 2/3 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon honey (or agave nectar)
  • 1/2 cup hot water
  • 2 teaspoons sambal oelek
For the platter:
  • 6-8 rainbow carrots, peeled and cut into sticks
  • 6-8 radishes, tops removed and cut into halves or quarters
  • 2 bunches Belgian endive (bonus if you can find one purple and one green bunch)
  • 1 large fennel bulb, cut into sticks
Instructions
To make the Garlicky Cauliflower Almond Butter Dip:
  1. Bring a large pot of water with 1 tablespoon salt to a boil. Once water is boiling, add cauliflower and garlic cloves and cook until cauliflower is fork tender, about 6 minutes. 

  2. Using a slotted spoon or small sieve, scoop out the cauliflower florets and garlic cloves and place in a blender. Reserve cooking water.

  3. Add almond butter, almond milk, white balsamic, cinnamon, nutmeg, cayenne and salt and pepper to blender. Turn blender on low and slowly add ¾ - 1 cup of the reserved cooking water, until the mixture has reached a creamy consistency. Transfer to a resealable container and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before serving, or up to three days.

To make the Thai Peanut Dipping Sauce:
  1. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the peanut butter, rice vinegar, honey, hot water and sambal oelek. Transfer to a resealable container and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before serving, or up to three days.

To assemble the platter:
  1. Place dipping sauces in two small bowls and place in center of platter. Surround with all of the vegetables and serve immediately.

Best EVER Winter Vegetable Platter | CaliGirlCooking.com

Turkey Cranberry Meatballs with Cranberry, Orange and Maple Glaze

Little bites of heaven right here ↓

Turkey Cranberry Meatballs with Cranberry, Orange and Maple Glaze | CaliGirlCooking.com

These Turkey Cranberry Meatballs with Cranberry, Orange and Maple Glaze are going to be your new favorite thing. Pinky promise.  They’re perfectly sweet and tart at the same time, yet laced with savory herbs and cheese…and did I mention they’re drenched in the most fabulous, winter fruit-y glaze? C’monnnnn…You know you want to make these for your next holiday get-together!


If you’ve been reading this blog for any length of time now, you’ll know that I love anything that can pass for an hors d’oeuvres OR a full-fledged dinner. Take, for example, these Asiago Chipotle Shrimp Toasts or these Crab Zucchini Stuffing Cakes with Lemon-Basil Aioli. I mean, if you’re going to nail a recipe, you might as well nail one that can multitask, am I right?

These Turkey Cranberry Meatballs with Cranberry, Orange and Maple Glaze most definitely fit the multitasking bill. I mean, I wouldn’t even be made if these showed up on the table for brunch. They do, after all, have a hefty serving of antioxidant-packed fruit AND protein. Can we get a heck ya?

Turkey Cranberry Meatballs with Cranberry, Orange and Maple Glaze | CaliGirlCooking.com

A little BTS look at the development of what has become one of my go-to, most tasty recipes of the season: I actually had to practice these meatballs (and the accompanying sauce) a couple of times to really nail down the recipe. For the first go-around, the meatballs came out just a bit too dry and the sauce was just wayyyy too spicy yet tart at the same time. Even with a trip to Quebec City looming ahead of me, I just couldn’t bring myself to post the recipe as it was. I take this food blogging job very seriously and would hate to lead you astray with something I wasn’t completely happy with!

But then, oh but then. Round two of Turkey Cranberry Meatballs recipe testing began and the finished product was just showstopping! Hence, why I’m so very excited to share it with you today.

Turkey Cranberry Meatballs with Cranberry, Orange and Maple Glaze | CaliGirlCooking.com

So, because I thought the meatballs were too dry the first time I tried this recipe, I decided to add some whole-milk ricotta in addition to the milk, Parmesan and egg. It gave these balls the perfect, even cheesier touch. I was a little worried that they would fall flat in the oven, but no sir-ee! They turned out just perfect.

Turkey Cranberry Meatballs with Cranberry, Orange and Maple Glaze | CaliGirlCooking.com

For the glaze, I decided to tone down the orange juice and red pepper flakes and use maple syrup instead of sugar to add some extra dimension to the sweetener. These were the perfect adjustments! The glaze turned out perfectly sweet with just a hint of savory spice from the addition of some chicken broth and the pepper flakes.

The other great thing about these Turkey Cranberry Meatballs with Cranberry, Orange and Maple Glaze is that they are sooo easy to prepare. All of the ingredients for the meatballs come together in one bowl, and the glaze can be made while the meatballs complete their first round in the oven.

Turkey Cranberry Meatballs with Cranberry, Orange and Maple Glaze | CaliGirlCooking.com

We douse the meatballs in the glaze before the second round of baking, which results in them being perfectly moist and marinated. Once they’re done cooking through, the meatballs are ready to be served!

The hubs and I enjoyed these over some whole wheat pasta, but you could also serve them (as I mentioned) with toothpicks as an appetizer, or even over mashed potatoes or some sort of grain. I’m also thinking some Turkey Cranberry Meatballs with Cranberry, Orange and Maple Glaze might be over-the-top delicious sandwiched in a hoagie roll or hot dog bun? Danggggg….I think I need to go make myself another batch now….

Turkey Cranberry Meatballs with Cranberry, Orange and Maple Glaze | CaliGirlCooking.com

Turkey Cranberry Meatballs with Cranberry, Orange and Maple Glaze | CaliGirlCooking.com
Print
Turkey Cranberry Meatballs with Cranberry, Orange and Maple Glaze
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
35 mins
Total Time
45 mins
 

Perfectly moist, cheese-y meatballs studded with dried cranberries and topped with a tangy cranberry, orange and maple glaze. The perfect appetizer or main dish for entertaining!

Course: Appetizer, Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
Servings: 18 meatballs
Author: CaliGirl Cooking
Ingredients
For the meatballs:
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 shallot, peeled and minced
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1 pound ground turkey
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan
  • 1 cup panko (or breadcrumbs)
  • 1/2 cup ricotta
  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme, minced
  • 1 teaspoon fennel pollen
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
For the glaze:
  • 3 cups fresh cranberries
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup water
  • Zest of one orange
  • 2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
  • 3/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 tablespoons butter
Instructions
  1. Place dried cranberries in a small bowl and cover with warm water. Let sit for 10-15 minutes, until cranberries become plump. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

  2. Add the olive oil to a small saute pan over medium heat. Once olive oil is heated, add the shallot and garlic, and saute for about 3 minutes, or until mixture becomes fragrant. Remove from heat.

  3. In a large mixing bowl, combine the ground turkey, milk, egg, Parmesan, panko, ricotta, thyme, fennel pollen, red pepper flakes, salt and pepper. Drain the cranberries from their water and add them as well, stirring the whole mixture until all ingredients are well combined. 

  4. Coat a large baking dish (I used one that was 8 ½” x 12”) with nonstick cooking spray. Take approximately 1/3 cups’ worth of the meatball mixture at a time and mold it into a ball. Place in baking dish and repeat with rest of mixture. It’s okay if you have to pack them in tight to fit them all.

  5. Bake meatballs in 400 degree oven for 15 minutes, or until lightly browned. 

  6. In the meantime, start making your glaze. Combine all glaze ingredients in a medium saucepan. Place over medium-high heat and cook until cranberries break down and a loose glaze forms. 

  7. When time is up for the meatballs, remove them from the oven and turn it down to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. If the glaze isn’t quite ready yet, just leave the meatballs out until it is (it shouldn’t be too long.)

  8. When the glaze is ready, pour it over the meatballs and return them to the now 325 degree oven for 20-25 minutes, or until the meatballs are cooked through. Serve warm.

Turkey Cranberry Meatballs with Cranberry, Orange and Maple Glaze | CaliGirlCooking.com

 

Oh yesssssss….