Turkey Porcupine Meatballs

Turkey Porcupine Meatballs at The Happy Housewife
The following is a post from contributing writer Andrea Green.

Did you eat porcupine balls as a kid? Turkey Porcupine Meatballs are an update of that classic recipe. Using turkey instead of ground beef makes these porcupine balls lighter. Spinach and brown rice are added to up the nutritional value.

Since this recipe calls for brown rice, I’d suggest cooking up a big batch at the beginning of the week. Use some brown rice for these meatballs, then use the rest to make Quick and Easy Jambalaya. Now you have two nights worth of meals planned!

If you have little ones at home, letting them use toothpicks to eat these meatballs is a great way to make mealtime fun. Finding the ones that have some frills on the top always made meal time more interesting  at my house.

Turkey Porcupine Meatballs


  • 1 cup cooked brown rice
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 small yellow onion, diced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 stalk celery, diced
  • 16 ounces lean ground turkey
  • 2 tablespoons dried cranberries, chopped
  • 3/4 cup spinach leaves, stems removed, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 large eggs


  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. In a skillet, saute onion, celery, and garlic in oil until soft. Transfer to a large bowl and allow to cool slightly.
  3. Add all other ingredients and mix well.
  4. Shape into 24 meatballs and place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet.
  5. Bake for 15 to 18 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 165 degrees.



Have you let your little ones eat with toothpicks before?

More recipes from Andrea

Find more delicious meal ideas at the The Happy Housewife Recipe Index.


  1. I love this twist on the old Porcupine Meatballs! At first reading, I was excited about the spinach & brown rice…but after re-reading it, I noted the dried cranberries as well. What fun! Can’t wait to try it!

  2. What a great twist on these yummy meatballs! We have made them with ground turkey and brown rice, but not with spinach and cranberries. Yum!

  3. Christy Johnson says:

    Just wondering what sides you served with these! Look delicious and can’t wait to try them with my family.

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