Cake, Batter, and Bowl

Indian Meatball Naanwiches


I’m back and feeling ready to post! To be honest, I had lost a bit of my blogging mojo over the past several weeks. I was plagued by writer’s block and couldn’t motivate myself to even get into the kitchen. But, I felt a lot of pressure to keep posting on a regular schedule, which is sort of silly because my blog is my creative outlet and is supposed to be fun – I never want blogging to start feeling like a second job. Anyway, I’m going to try and stop being so hard on myself and just take a break if I need it from now on!

I’m definitely feeling very refreshed and ready to cook now. I’ll post recaps of our trip to Portland and my college reunion soon, but first I wanted to share these Indian Meatball Naanwiches. When I returned from my conference in Newport, our fridge was pretty bare, but I did manage to find some ground turkey and naan in the freezer, which served as the inspiration for this dish.

These naanwiches are a fun twist on traditional meatball subs. The spiced meatballs contain a hefty amount of garlic and ginger, and are packed with cumin, ground fennel seeds (don’t leave these out – they really elevate the meatballs in my opinion!), and cayenne pepper. Since I wanted the tomato sauce to compliment the meatballs but not overpower them, I kept it pretty mild by only stirring in a touch of garam masala. I also added golden raisins for a bit of sweetness and Greek yogurt for some creaminess. These naanwiches were really tasty, but I think they would have been even better with some fresh cilantro on top to bright them up. So, I went ahead and added the cilantro to the recipe below and already can’t wait to make them again with it!

Indian Meatball Naanwiches
Printable Recipe


6 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons minced ginger
4 teaspoons ground cumin
4 teaspoons ground fennel seeds
2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons salt
3 pounds ground turkey

Tomato Sauce:
1 tablespoon canola oil
1/2 cup chopped red onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon garam masala
1/4 cup golden raisins
1 28-ounce can diced tomatoes, drained
1/2 cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt
1/2 teaspoon salt

7 pieces of naan, warmed
1/4 cup chopped cilantro

To make the meatballs, heat oven to 375˚F. Place the garlic, ginger, cumin, ground fennel seeds, cayenne pepper, and salt in a large bowl. Gently but thoroughly mix in the ground turkey and shape the mixture into 21 meatballs. Place meatballs on a large cookie sheet and bake at 375˚F for 20 minutes or until cooked through and no longer pink in the center.

Meanwhile, to make the tomato sauce, heat canola oil over medium high heat in a nonstick skillet. Sauté red onion for 5 to 7 minutes or until tender; mix in garlic and garam masala and sauté for 1 additional minute or until fragrant. Stir in golden raisins and tomatoes and cook 1 more minute. Place mixture in a food processor and pulse for a minute or until smooth. Stir in Greek yogurt and salt.

To assemble the naanwiches, top half of each piece of naan with three meatballs. Evenly spread sauce and cilantro on top. Fold naan over and serve. Makes 7 naanwiches.

Nutrition: 460 calories, 17.0g fat, 2.1g fiber, 33.7g protein per naanwich
Cost: $2.19 per naanwich

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