Pesto Mozzarella Turkey Meatballs & Gemelli Pasta Bake

pesto mozzarella meatball gemelli

Podcast Recommendation:

Servings: 2-3

Prep Time: 10 minutes | Cook Time: 40 minutes


  • 1/4 pound ground turkey
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped onion
  • 2 tablespoons egg whites
  • 2 tablespoons bread crumbs
  • 2 tablespoons dried parsley
  • 2 tablespoons pesto
  • 1 ounce fresh mozzarella, cut into small cubes
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • 1.5 teaspoons garlic salt
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • 1-2 tablespoons vegetable oil, for frying
  • 3 ounces fresh mozzarella, sliced
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 2/3 cup pesto
  • 1/2 box gemelli pasta


  1. Preheat an oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Boil gemelli pasta 10-12 minutes or according to box’s directions.
  3. While the pasta is cooking place the ground turkey, onion, egg, bread crumbs, parsley, pesto, milk, salt, and black pepper in a bowl.
  4. Mix with hands until evenly blended, being careful not to over mix to keep the tenderness of the meat, then form into 1 3/4-inch meatballs.
  5. Make a hole in the meatball with your finger and place a mozzarella cheese cube in the hole.
  6. Seal the meatball around the cheese and place on a separate plate until all meatballs are done.
  7. Heat vegetable oil in a frying pan over medium.
  8. Fry the meatballs for 3-4 minutes per side and then remove from pan.
  9. Once gemelli pasta is done cooking, drain and then toss and coat with remaining pesto.
  10. Put half the pasta in an oven-safe baking dish and then put meatballs on top.
  11. Put remaining pasta over the meatballs and then top with mozzarella and grated parmesan cheese.
  12. Cover with tinfoil so that mozzarella doesn’t burn.
  13. Bake in the preheated oven for 20-30 minutes.

Recipe adapted from here.


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