Tag Archives: ground beef

Paleo & Whole30 Sweet and Sour Meatballs

These delicious Paleo & Whole30 Sweet and Sour Meatballs are so much healthier and taster than the takeout version! It’s only sweetened with pineapple juice but so flavorful.

Whole30 Sweet and Sour Meatballs

Sweet and sour sauce dishes at Chinese restaurants used to be my go-to growing up. There’s something so addicting about the combination of 2 flavors, especially when they coat any kind of meat, and I love how these components balance each other out so well.

These days, I don’t ever get Chinese takeout, but the sugar content alone would make me feel horrible if I did, let alone all the gluten, soy, and MSG that are common at these restaurants. So, of course, I made a healthier, low-sugar version at home so I can enjoy it again, and it tastes even better than the original!

Paleo & Whole30 Sweet and Sour Meatballs Recipe

These Whole30 sweet and sour meatballs are made using real food substitutions but you won’t miss out on any of the delicious flavors. The sauce is sweetened with pineapple juice and coconut aminos, which has a naturally sweet flavor especially when cooked down like it is in this recipe.

The combination apple cider vinegar and sugar free ketchup provides that sour and tangy flavor that’s so tasty and addicting! This recipe makes a good amount of the sweet and sour sauce, so don’t throw it out if you have extra left over. You can always use it to pour on other meats and veggies, because it’s just that good.

Whole30 Sweet and Sour Meatballs
Whole30 Sweet and Sour Meatballs

Substitutions and Variations

While this Whole30 Sweet and Sour Meatballs are amazing as they are written, I completely understand if you want to try different variations depending on the ingredients you have on hand. Here are some way you can change it up:

  • You can use any combination of ground meat. I do like to add a little bit of beef when I make meatballs because it provides so much moisture and flavor. However, you’ll be cooking the meatballs in the sauce anyway, so leaner cuts like chicken or turkey will work as well.
  • The sauce can be thickened with other starches like arrowroot or potato. If you want to use something like coconut flour, I would reduce it to 2 tsp because coconut flour absorbs a lot of water.
  • Feel free to experiment with different vegetables to cook in the sauce. Broccoli, onions, and green beans can all work.
  • If you like your sweet and sour sauce extra sweet, you can add 1 or 2 medjool dates to the sauce ingredients before you blend it all together. I personally didn’t think that this was necessary, but I know many of you like things sweeter than me!
Whole30 Sweet and Sour Meatballs

Ways to Serve These Paleo & Whole30 Sweet and Sour Meatballs

These meatballs are just so good on their own, but even better if you have cauliflower rice to soak up all the delicious sauce. If you aren’t doing the Whole30 challenge and are fine with grains, you can serve with regular white rice (I’ve been loving basmati lately).

I’ve been eating these meatballs with rice and a side of steamed broccoli and it’s been one of my favorite meals that’s so healthy and balanced. What would you serve these meatballs with? I would love some other ideas!

Whole30 Sweet and Sour Meatballs
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Paleo & Whole30 Sweet and Sour Meatballs

These delicious Paleo & Whole30 Sweet and Sour Meatballs are so much healthier and taster than the takeout version! It’s only sweetened with pineapple juice but so flavorful.
Course Main Course
Cuisine Chinese
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Calories 368kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 bell pepper cut into chunks, any color
  • Chopped green onions for garnish

Meatballs

  • 1 lb ground pork
  • 1/2 lb ground beef
  • 1/2 cup chopped onions
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbsp coconut flour
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper

Sweet and Sour Sauce

  • 1 cup pineapple juice no sugar added (drained from a can of pineapple chunks)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 cup sugar-free ketchup
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup coconut aminos
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 tbsp tapioca starch or arrowroot starch
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  • Place all ingredients for the meatballs in the large bowl and mix together.
  • Form into golf sized balls and place evenly on a baking sheet, without have them touch each other. 
  • Bake for 15 minutes.
  • While the meatballs are baking, place all ingredients for the sweet and sour sauce in a blender and blend until smooth. 
  • Remove the meatballs once they are finished baking.
  • Pour the sauce into a large saucepan and heat over medium high heat until it comes to a boil. 
  • Add the meatballs and bell pepper, then reduce the heat to medium until everything comes to a simmer.
  • Simmer uncovered for 10-15 minutes until the meatballs are cooked through and the sauce has thickened. 
  • Remove from heat and sprinkle with chopped green onions before serving. 
What Great Grandma Ate / Jean Choi is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Regarding other affiliate links and affiliate relationships: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Thank you for your support and understanding.

Instant Pot Whole30 Chili with Spaghetti Squash

This bean-free Whole30 Chili comes together easily in the Instant Pot, and the spaghetti squash adds such a flavorful and comforting taste and texture!

Instant Pot Whole30 Chili

Hey guys, did you hear??? I’m doing the Whole30 challenge this month after dining out waaaaaay too much and indulging in a mountain of sweets over the holidays, and EVERY new recipe for this month will be Whole30-compliant!

Even though I post a lot of Whole30 recipes, it’s actually been almost 2 years since I’ve done the challenge. I do eat mostly low sugar anyway but I’m really feeling sluggish lately so I thought it was a great time to try it out again and to be more intentional with my eating.

Instant Pot Whole30 Chili Recipe

The first recipe of this month is this amazingly flavorful and easy Instant Pot Whole30 Chili. Chili without beans is actually really delicious, and I don’t think you’ll miss the beans at all. However, I do like the heartiness that beans add, so I fancied up this Whole30 chili by adding spaghetti squash threads and the result is so comforting and cozy!

Instant Pot Whole30 Chili
Instant Pot Whole30 Chili

Spaghetti Squash in the Instant Pot

If you’ve never cooked spaghetti squash in the Instant Pot before, you are missing out BIG TIME. It’s SO much easier than roasting it in the oven, and you don’t even have to cut open the squash before cooking it.

You simply place the whole thing in the Instant Pot on a steamer rack over some water, and let it do all the work for you. I don’t think I’ll cook spaghetti squash any other way.

Great For a Make Ahead Meal!

If you are like me and don’t mind leftovers, this Instant Pot Whole30 Chili is a really great to make ahead of time so you can eat it for several meals. It also freezes really well so you can even divide them into individual portions before freezing them for emergency meals!

With some of the restrictions that the Whole30 challenge comes with, I so appreciate meals like this one that I can heat up quickly when I’m hungry, so make a big batch and enjoy!

Instant Pot Whole30 Chili
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Instant Pot Whole30 Chili with Spaghetti Squash

This bean-free Whole30 Chili comes together easily in the Instant Pot, and the spaghetti squash adds such a flavorful and comforting taste and texture!
Course Main Course, Soup
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Pressure Building Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 8 servings
Calories 399kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 small spaghetti squash
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves minced
  • 2 lbs ground beef
  • 1 red bell pepper chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper chopped
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tbsp ground cumin
  • 1 tbsp dried oregano
  • 1 tbsp paprika
  • 2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne use more or less depending on your spice level
  • 1 28-oz can of diced tomatoes sugar free
  • 2 cups bone broth or beef broth
  • Jalapeño slices, lime juice, avocado, and/or cilantro for garnish

Instructions

  • Place a steamer rack in the Instant Pot, and pour in 1 cup of water. 
  • Place the whole spaghetti squash, uncut, on the rack. 
  • Screw on the lid, make sure the pressure valve is closed, then cook for 20 minutes on manual. 
  • Release the pressure immediately and open the lid. 
  • Cut the squash in half, remove the seeds, and use a fork to loosen the spaghetti squash threads. Set aside.
  • Empty the Instant Pot, then set it to “sauté” and add coconut oil.
  • Once the Instant Pot indicates that the pot is “hot,” add onion, garlic, and ground beef. Use a wooden spoon to break up the meat and cook stirring for 5 minutes, until the beef is no longer pink.
  • Turn off the Instant Pot, then add in red and green bell peppers, all the spices, diced tomatoes, and bone broth
  • Stir in spaghetti squash threads.
  • Close the lid and set it to Manual on HIGH for 10 minutes.
  • Once it beeps to a finish, you can quick release the pressure to eat it right away, or let it release pressure naturally if you want to eat it later.
  • Taste to adjust seasoning or add more broth if the chili is too thick. 
  • Serve hot alone or garnished with jalapeño slices, lime juice, avocado, and/or cilantro.

What Great Grandma Ate / Jean Choi is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Regarding other affiliate links and affiliate relationships: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Thank you for your support and understanding.

Instant Pot Meatballs in Tomato Sauce (Paleo, Whole30)

These Instant Pot Meatballs in Tomato Sauce are the ultimate comfort food that’s paleo, Whole30, and kid-friendly! Enjoy it over zucchini noodles or cauliflower rice to keep it low carb.

I can’t believe I haven’t had a classic Italian meatballs recipe on my blog until now. It’s mostly because my husband isn’t a huge fan of tomatoes or tomato based sauces, but I love them. I still make them and he’ll eat them, but I try not to make it too many times in the week for his sake.

However, these Instant Pot Meatballs in Tomato Sauce might be on regular rotation because they are SO comforting and delicious, so I’m planning to make them again and again (sorry, Charlie!).

Instant Pot Meatballs in Tomato Sauce Recipe

With the weather cooling down and the days getting shorter, I’ve been craving comfort food more and more. These Instant Pot Meatballs in Tomato Sauce fit the bill and are great for the entire family, even kids will go crazy for these! Best of all, it’s easy to make a large batch of (takes only 30 minutes!) and easy to cleanup since it’s all made in the Instant Pot, so it’s a good one to make on a busy weeknight.

With spices like oregano, garlic, and onions, it has all the familiar and cozy flavors that everyone loves!

Instant Pot Meatballs in Tomato SauceInstant Pot Meatballs in Tomato Sauce

Instant Pot Size

This recipe was made in a 6 qt Instant Pot, with just enough liquid to cover the bottom of the pot. If you have one that’s larger, it may not come to pressure and you’ll have to add more liquid so be prepared to adjust the recipe accordingly, or water down the liquid to make sure it’ll cook.

Keeping it Whole30 or Low Carb

These Instant Pot Meatballs in Tomato Sauce are fantastic on their own, but they are saucy enough that you can serve over your favorite gluten free pasta or some white rice.

However, if you are doing the Whole30 challenge or you want to keep low carb, you can serve them over:

  • zucchini noodles,
  • spaghetti squash,
  • or cauliflower rice.

These options are also a great way to add some extra veggies into your diet. These meatballs also freeze and defrost beautifully without changing the texture or flavors so go make them a big batch to enjoy for days!

Instant Pot Meatballs in Tomato Sauce

Instant Pot Meatballs in Tomato Sauce

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Instant Pot Meatballs in Tomato Sauce (Paleo, Whole30)

These Instant Pot Meatballs in Tomato Sauce are the ultimate comfort food that's paleo, Whole30, and kid-friendly! Enjoy it over zucchini noodles or cauliflower rice to keep it low carb.
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Total Time 22 minutes
Servings 8 servings
Calories 388kcal
Author Jean Choi

Ingredients

Meatballs

  • 2 lbs ground beef
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 garlic cloves minced
  • 2 tbsp nutritional yeast optional
  • 2 tsp oregano
  • 2 tsp onion powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper

Tomato Sauce

  • 2 tbsp avocado oil or coconut oil
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 onion diced
  • 28 oz canned crushed tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 tsp sea salt
  • Optional: Chopped parsley and red pepper flakes for garnish

Instructions

  • Combine all ingredients for the meatballs in a large bowl and mix together. Do not overmix.
  • Roll into balls the size of golf balls and set aside.
  • Set a 6qt Instant Pot on Sautè and add avocado oil.
  • Once the Instant Pot signals that it's "hot,' add onion and garlic and cook stirring for 5 minutes until soft and fragrant.
  • Press Cancel on the Instant Pot, and then add crushed tomatoes, water, tomato paste, and sea salt, and stir together.
  • Remove about 1/3 of the sauce and set aside.
  • Gently add the meatballs to the Instant Pot over the sauce.
  • Pour 1/3 of the sauce that was previous removed back in, covering the meatballs from the top. 
  • Close the lid, make the sure the pressure valve is set to Sealing. 
  • Cook on Manual on high pressure for 7 minutes.
  • Once the Instant Pot beeps to a finish, let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes.
  • Open the lid and serve over cooked spaghetti squash, zucchini noodles, or cauliflower rice!

What Great Grandma Ate / Jean Choi is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.
 
Regarding other affiliate links and affiliate relationships: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Thank you for your support and understanding.