These Greek Meatball Bowls are me pretending like it’s Spring already, or something.
Despite the weather telling me otherwise, I feel that kind of hopeful readiness this year. Like a flower learning towards the sun. It’s, honestly, quite unlike me. I’ve always been more of a practical, placid, “welp, we’re all gonna die” type of person.
Like practicality could hide hurt or hope or the fact that we all, truly, want & yearn for something. Even if it’s not something we’re allowing ourselves to need, yet alone acknowledge.
Apparently one bowl meals make me all introspective today.
Maybe it’s because the whole “one bowl meal” thing subconsciously reminds me that I’m worth taking care of, something I valiantly try to forget on a regular basis. Even as much as I write and think and create all based on the idea of nourishing people and bodies and hearts, I very often leave myself out of those thoughts.
Like healing is for other people. Like if I keep myself busy enough taking care of other people, I can pretend that sometimes… I’m not very good at taking care of myself.
Woah, Rach, get back to the Greek Meatball Bowls already.
This is the kind of meal that you can pull together without much effort, yet feels so much more indulgent than its simplicity suggests. I like to make the meatballs while the cauliflower rice is cooking because they come together so quickly. They’re fragrant and layered, but not too heavy. Sometimes I put them on fancy little skewers and pretend that someone else made them for me.
The green tzatziki sauce comes together in seconds and if you’re not a tzatziki obsessive like I am right now, there’s an easy way to gussy up plain yogurt included in the recipe, too.
Layered together, the greek meatballs float on top of the creamy sauce, surrounded by fluffy rice dotted with tart pomegranate and almost-too-salty olives. I like to fluff out the Greek meatball bowls a little further with extra greens, herbs, sliced red onion and cucumber for a light, fragrant, refreshing meal that’s just as good at my lunch-desk or for an easy evening meal with others.
Either way, this is a meal that reminds me: “you’re gonna be just fine.”Print
Greek Meatball Bowls with Green Tzatziki Sauce & Pomegranate Olive Rice
These easy Greek Meatball Bowls are a great way to level up your weeknight dinner or lunch with a speedy, vibrant take on classic Mediterranean flavors.
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 25 minutes
- Total Time: 40 minutes
- Yield: Serves 4 - 6 1x
- Category: one bowl meal
- Method: oven
For the herbed greek meatballs:
- 1 lb / 454 g ground beef or lamb
- 1/4 cup / 55 g grated red onion, about 1/2 small
- 2 tbsp / 30 ml avocado or olive oil, I like this one, only add if your meat is very lean
- 1 tsp / 1 g dried oregano
- 1 tsp / 1 g dried parsley
- 1 tsp / 2 g dried dill
- 1 tsp / 1 g dried mint, I like this one
- 1 tsp / 4 g dried lemon peel, I like this one
- 3/4 tsp / 4 g fine sea salt
- 1/2 tsp / 2 g granulated garlic
For the pomegranate olive cauliflower rice:
- 1 lb / 454 g frozen riced cauliflower
- 1 tbsp / 15 ml avocado or olive oil
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1/2 tsp granulated garlic
- 1/4 tsp fine sea salt
- 2 tsp / 10 ml fresh lemon juice
- 1/4 + 2 tbsp / 75 g pomegranate arils
- 1/4 cup / 35 g greek olives, chopped
For the green tzatziki sauce:
- 12 oz / 340 g dairy free tzatziki, see notes
- 1/2 cup / 10 g fresh parsley
- 1/2 cup / 10 g fresh mint
- lemon juice & salt, to taste
For the bowls:
- arugula or raw greens of your choice
- sliced cucumber
- thinly sliced red onion
- extra olives
- additional fresh parsley or mint, if you like
ROAST: Preheat the oven to 425 F / 220 C. Pour the frozen riced cauliflower onto a baking sheet and drizzle with the oil. Sprinkle over the oregano, garlic & sea salt. Toss the rice until it is evenly coated in the oil & seasonings, then spread it out into a single layer on the baking sheet. Roast for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool. Lower the oven temperature to 375 F / 190 C.
MIX: While the cauliflower is cooking, mix the meatballs. Add all of the meatball ingredients to a mixing bowl and gently work with your hands until the seasonings are evenly distributed throughout the meat. Use a 2 tablespoon / 30 g measuring scoop to divide the mixture into 16 evenly sized meatballs. Roll and drop the meatballs onto a baking sheet, lining it with parchment or foil if you like.
COOK: Bake the meatballs until they are cooked through but still have a little spring to the touch, about 12 – 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and let rest on baking sheet.
BLEND: Add all of the green tzatziki sauce ingredients to a wide mouth Mason jar or blender pitcher. Either use an immersion blender for a pretty herb-flecked sauce or a high powered blender for a smoothly green sauce. Blend until the sauce is the consistency you like, adding additional lemon & salt to taste or additional water to thin. Set aside for later.
TOSS: Transfer the roasted cauliflower rice to a bowl. Add the lemon juice, pomegranate & chopped olives, stirring to combine.
LAYER: Spoon the green tzatziki sauce onto the bottom of your bowls. Top with the pomegranate olive rice and greek meatballs. Add in all the fixings you like: greens, cucumber, red onion, olives & extra fresh herbs. Bonus points for a lemon wedge or two.
If you’re not a tzatziki obsessive like myself, you may not have it to hand at all times! If not, substitute 12 oz / 340 g of your favorite plain yogurt and add a handful of fresh dill, a few chunks of English cucumber, a generous squeeze of lemon juice and some salt and garlic to taste. Then continue with the recipe above! If you like, add some additional water at the end to thin the sauce to the consistency you prefer.
I’ve been eating AIP now for 2 months and I am so happy I found this recipe. It’s my favorite hands down! Full of complex flavors, nice textures and pleasing to look at. It takes a little time to make all the components and quite a few dishes to clean but it was so worth it. I doubled the recipe knowing I was going to love it so I’d have leftovers. It was DELICIOUS!
Your website has been a tremendous help while following AIP. This was a delicious recipe!