Ricotta Turkey Meatballs with Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Garlic Asiago Cream Sauce

Creamy ricotta cheese is blended with ground turkey and sun-dried tomatoes to create the most flavorful meatballs ever.  Ricotta Turkey Meatballs with Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Garlic Asiago Cream Sauce make a great topping for pasta or just eat them with a fork for a low-carb meal.

Ricotta Meatballs with Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Garlic Asiago Cream Sauce | The Suburban Soapbox #meatballs #maggianos

We’ve had a ton of rain lately.  A lot.  Like my yard makes the squishy sound when you walk around.  It’s kind of weird too because they’re all those horribly, scary thunderstorms with buckets of rain falling from the sky.  Not just a light steady rain.  If you’re caught outside during one of these storms you will be soaked.  To the bone…even if you hide on a porch.  Yesterday, I think it was raining sideways and the lighting strikes were circling my house like I had offended mother nature with one of my recipe fails, wasting her beautiful summer berries for the sake of my blog.  She was really angry.

Ricotta Meatballs with Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Garlic Asiago Cream Sauce | The Suburban Soapbox #meatballs #maggianos

During the last storm a few weeks ago, there was nothing to do…..nothing.  And I had a hankering for meatballs but not with a red sauce and not any meatball.  I had a craving for a dish that I devoured at Maggiano’s recently, it had hand twisted pasta with chicken and ricotta meatballs swimming in a creamy garlic, white wine sauce.  It was a gut-buster despite the fact that the meatballs were billed as chicken meatballs.  I barely put a dent in it but the leftovers fed me for approximately 6 years.  Well, maybe a little exaggeration but it did last me a good, long while.  And when I took the last bite, I was a little sad it was gone.  Sure, I could go back to Maggiano’s again and order the same thing but why…why do such a thing when I could, possibly, make something even better.

Ricotta Meatballs with Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Garlic Asiago Cream Sauce | The Suburban Soapbox #meatballs #maggianos

And so…on that rainy, storm-filled, soggy Saturday afternoon, I made these Ricotta Turkey Meatballs with Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Garlic Asiago Cream Sauce.  And they were amaaaaazing.  And I’m sure a lot healthier than the Maggiano’s version but I don’t like to calculate my nutritional information because a) it’s a pain in the butt and b) I’m a little scared.  So, I don’t.  I won’t.  I’ll just practice perfect portion control.  Unless I’m really, really hungry and then I’ll eat a bucket of whatever.

Ricotta Meatballs with Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Garlic Asiago Cream Sauce | The Suburban Soapbox #meatballs #maggianos

Ricotta Turkey Meatballs with Sun-Dried Tomatoes are really light, much less dense than The Best Meatballs with Stovetop Marinara I make with ground beef.  The ricotta keeps things creamy and adds a bit of tang to the mix.  The sun-dried tomatoes and asiago cheese turn up the volume lending a ton of flavor that you wouldn’t expect in a meatball.  They pair so perfectly with the Garlic Asiago Cream Sauce which comes together in minutes and is gluten-free…if you’re into that kind of thing.

Ricotta Meatballs with Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Garlic Asiago Cream Sauce | The Suburban Soapbox #meatballs #maggianos

They would make a great Sunday supper or you could make the meatballs on the weekend and whip up the sauce on a busy weeknight.  Serve it with a Berry Tiramisu or Ricotta Ice Cream Filled Cannoli for dessert. Either way, you’re going to have a comforting meal that no thunderstorm could ruin…unless your power is out.  Then take out sounds pretty good to me.

Ricotta Turkey Meatballs with Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Garlic Asiago Cream Sauce

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 65 minutes
Yield: 12 servings
Serving Size: 2 meatballs and 1/4 cup of sauce

Ricotta Turkey Meatballs with Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Garlic Asiago Cream Sauce

Ingredients
  • For the meatballs:
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 vidalia onion, minced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound lean ground turkey
  • 1 cup whole milk ricotta cheese
  • 1/2 cup shredded asiago cheese
  • 1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes, rehydrated in hot water, drained and minced
  • 1/4 cup packed chopped parsley
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup panko bread crumbs
  • For the sauce:
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 shallots, minced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 1/2 cups chicken stock
  • 3/4 cup half and half
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 cup shredded asiago cheese
  • kosher salt and pepper, to taste
Instructions
  1. For the meatballs:
  2. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  3. In a medium saute pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until softened, approximately 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Turn off the heat and allow to cool slightly.
  4. In a large bowl, combine the turkey, ricotta, asiago, tomatoes, parsley, egg, garlic powder, salt and pepper with the onion mixture using your hands to mix the ingredients thoroughly. Roll portions of the turkey mixture into balls about the size of a golf ball and place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment. Bake the meatballs in the oven for 35-40 minutes or until done.
  5. While the meatballs are baking, heat the remaining olive oil in a saucepan and add the shallots. Cook until translucent and then stir in the garlic. Cook for 30 seconds and then stir in the cornstarch. Continue cooking for 1 minute. Add the chicken stock and bring the mixture to a boil. Stir in the half and half. Turn the heat to a simmer and cook until slightly thickened, approximately 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the garlic powder and asiago cheese stirring until smooth. Sitr in the basil and parsley. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Transfer the meatballs to a serving platter and serve immediately with the sauce.
Notes
Meatballs can be cooked and frozen for up to 3 months in an airtight container.

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