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  • Jefferson Adams

    Gluten-free Italian-style Meatballs

    Jefferson Adams
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    Reviewed and edited by a celiac disease expert.

    Celiac.com 01/10/2014 - Meatballs are another of those many culinary delights I kind of left behind upon going gluten-free, especially at restaurants. I have craved them from time to time ever since, but had yet to satisfy that craving until I came upon this recipe that uses Rice Chex in place of bread crumbs. 

    Photo: CC-- TheGeoffMeisterThese simple, easy to make meatballs of beef, pork and other seasonings go a long way toward delivering that satisfaction. They can be made ahead of time, and even frozen. They go great with your favorite pasta and sauce.



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    When I have these around at lunchtime, I like to slice them and put them onto toasted gluten-free bread and top them with sauce and Parmesan or Romano and mozzarella cheese and pop them under the broiler for a yummy meatball sandwich.

    Ingredients:

    • ½ pound lean ground beef
    • ½ pound ground pork
    • 1 medium onion, minced
    • 2 cloves garlic, minced
    • ½ teaspoon sea salt
    • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
    • ½ teaspoon onion powder
    • 1 teaspoon dried basil leaves
    • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
    • ¾ teaspoon dried oregano
    • ¾ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
    • 1 dash red pepper sauce, as desired, to taste
    • 1½ tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
    • ⅓ cup ricotta cheese
    • ½ cup grated Romano cheese
    • ½ cup seasoned finely crushed Rice Chex

    Directions:
    Heat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).

    In a mixing bowl, blend beef, salt, onion, garlic, garlic powder, onion powder, basil, thyme, oregano, red pepper flakes, hot pepper sauce, and Worcestershire sauce; mix well.

    Add the ricotta and Parmesan cheeses, and crushed Rice Chex. Mix until evenly blended, then form into 1½-inch meatballs, and place onto a baking sheet.

    The fast way is to bake them until no longer pink in the center, 20 to 25 minutes.

    Sometimes, though, I like to pop them into a crock pot with my favorite sauce, and slow cook them a few hours.

    Either way, serve with your favorite pasta and sauce, or as a sandwich, sliced on toasted gluten-free bread, with sauce and melted mozzarella.

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    I have been gluten-free due to a wheat allergy and genetic risk of celiac for about 2 and a half years. My dad has celiac disease. When I first got diagnosed, I wasn't sure what to do about meatballs, so I used either crushed up Rice Chex or toasted gluten-free bread and made my own bread crumbs. I have not tried the gluten-free bread crumbs available, because making my own bread crumbs or using Rice Chex saves me a lot of money. My non-celiac friends can't tell the difference, and they still love my meatballs.

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  • About Me

    Jefferson Adams is Celiac.com's senior writer and Digital Content Director. He earned his B.A. and M.F.A. at Arizona State University, and has authored more than 2,500 articles on celiac disease. His coursework includes studies in science, scientific methodology, biology, anatomy, medicine, logic, and advanced research. He previously served as SF Health News Examiner for Examiner.com, and devised health and medical content for Sharecare.com. Jefferson has spoken about celiac disease to the media, including an appearance on the KQED radio show Forum, and is the editor of the book "Cereal Killers" by Scott Adams and Ron Hoggan, Ed.D.


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