Joe actually found this recipe and it wasn’t very difficult to change to become paleo. I am pretty sure you aren’t supposed to have almond flour in Whole 30, so if you are super strict with that program- leave it out! I am pretty sure the meatballs will still stick together with all the seasonings, eggs, and onions. If you do try it that way, leave me a comment so I know if it works!
I want to note two important points first…
1. I generally try to buy organic and grass fed- but as you all know grass fed beef can get really expensive! For this dish- BUY GRASS FED ORGANIC GROUND BEEF! You are simmering these meatballs in sauce for hours and hours and when you are finished you will see a little bit of grease at the top. But I could tell how little there was and it actually looked like it added flavor then a ton of fat. If you used regular ol’ ground beef the amount of fat might be kinda gross.
2. This recipe calls for tomato sauce, tomato puree, and crushed tomatoes. You NEED to make sure the ones you buy the only ingredients are tomatoes. There are tons of tomato sauces out there that add sugar. You may see sugar in the food label- but you can’t have sugar as part of the ingredients. Good to look for the ones just in the can and not the jars. They may seem really plain in flavor, but the spices in the meatballs season the sauce.
Okay, here we go! I did this in the morning probably around 10am and we ate around 6pm. So make these so you have at least 6-8 hours for them to cook in the crockpot.
* 3 lbs Ground Beef (Organic Grass Fed)
* 10 Cloves of garlic, minced or in a garlic press
* 1 Medium white onion, chopped finely
* 2 large eggs
* 2 TB (Tablespoon) of dried parsley
* 2 TB Garlic powder
* 2 TSP Salt
* 4 TB Oregano
* 1 TB Red pepper flakes. (It called for 2, but 1 one spicy enough. If you like really spicy- add the second TB)
* 3 TB Italian seasoning
* 1 TB Basil
* 2 TB Olive oil
* 1 1/2 cups Almond Flour (You can opt out of this part if you are strict Whole30)
* 2 cans of tomato sauce (23 oz each)
* 1 can of crushed tomatoes (28 oz)
* 1 can of tomato puree (15 oz)
* 5-6 large zucchini’s spiraled.
1. For the meatballs get a large mixing bowl add your minced onion, garlic, and beaten eggs. Once that is mixed in completely add all of the spices and the olive oil. I put a few tablespoons in at a time and mixed it up with my hands. (Ladies, remember to take your wedding ring off. I still think I have ground beef stuck under the diamond).
2. Once that is all mixed together and all the ingredients are incorporated evenly through the meat- add the almond meal until fully combined.
3. Add the tomato sauce, tomato puree, and crushed tomatoes to the crock pot and stir until combined.
4. Roll your meatballs about the size of a golf ball to tennis ball, depends on how big you want them. The mixture made about 28 meatballs, so this is a recipe that will work great for a big family! Once they are all rolled out add them to the crockpot and cook on low for 6-8 hours. (Or you can get impatient like me and cook on high for the last 2 hours!)
For the Zoodles:
* 5-6 Green Zuchinni’s. I would use a spiralizer so they have a noodle type of look to them. Think about 1-2 zucchini’s per person.
1. Cook them in boiling water no more then 3-5 minutes. You want these to be ‘al dente’. Otherwise they will be mushy and soggy and you will be really annoyed. I did that once, and yes… I was really annoyed.
2. Drain the zoodles and serve on a plate with a heaping of the sauce and as many meatballs as you wish!