Turkey Meatballs with Cranberry Sauce

Now – I don’t host Thanksgiving; My family and I always head out of town for the weekend to enjoy someone else’s cooking. Which I love – I love to experience other people’s traditions, recipes, and all the fun holiday activities. So in the couple days leading up to the ‘BIG FEAST’ and heading out of town I like to purge my refrigerator.

Do other people do that??

So for that week – I really just play around in the kitchen which is always fun! Some recipes don’t turn out as good – they never make the blog so you don’t have to worry.

So this yummy concoction of random ingredients (well if you really think about it – they aren’t that random) kind of came together very easy and super simple. Next time I might try a crockpot/slow cooker to very marinate the flavors together. Stay tuned on that.

Onto the recipe – so I had some ground pork and turkey in my fridge that I never used. In my pantry a can of cranberry sauce (probably from last year – but don’t worry it wasn’t expired). A little bit of milk and some OJ hanging around. Gathered some other staples that I always keep in my kitchen and we got to making some simple meatballs.

These meatballs turned out so tender, flavor-packed – perfect for a Thanksgiving party snack, or as a main dish with your favorite sides, it’s just so good!


  • 1 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 pound ground pork
  • 1 pound ground turkey
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 cup fresh breadcrumbs
  • 2/3 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 tsp crushed fennel seeds
  • 4 tsp finely chopped sage
  • pinch of salt and pepper
  • 1 (14 oz) can jellied cranberry sauce
  • 2 tbsp fresh orange juice
  • 2 tbsp dark brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh ginger


  • Preheat oven to 450°F. Coat a rimmed baking sheet with oil.
  • Using your hands, mix pork, turkey, eggs, garlic, breadcrumbs, milk, fennel, 4 tsp. chopped sage, 2 tsp. salt, and 1/2 tsp. pepper in a large bowl until incorporated. Roll into 1″ balls, making sure to pack firmly.
  • Transfer balls to prepared baking sheet, packing them snuggly. Roast meatballs until firm and cooked through, about 15 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, cook cranberry sauce, orange juice, brown sugar, ginger, and remaining 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp. pepper in a medium saucepan over medium heat, whisking constantly, until smooth, about 5 minutes.
  • Using a pastry brush, generously coat meatballs with 1/3 cup cranberry sauce mixture. Return meatballs to oven and continue to bake until glaze is shiny and caramelized, about 5 minutes more.
  • Shake sheet to coat meatballs with sauce. Transfer remaining sauce to a serving bowl and transfer meatballs to a serving platter. Top meatballs with sage leaves before serving, if using.

Enjoy – see you in the Kitchen!

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