Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Turkey Quinoa Meatloaf (Gluten-Free!!!!)

This is my son's plate from dinner tonight
I usually make a double batch of this recipe in the hopes of having leftovers. This is one of maybe 4 recipes I make that the kids (and Dwayne) actually cheer for when they find out it's for dinner. I found the original recipe on allrecipes.com

1/4 cup quinoa (I use the red but the white is fine)
1/2 cup water
1 tsp. olive oil
1 small onion, finely chopped (Cuisinart!)
1 large clove garlic, finely chopped
1 (20 oz) package of ground turkey (I use Jennie-O, lean)
1 Tbs. tomato paste
1 Tbs. hot pepper sauce (I usually use Frank's Red Hot; if you have a family member who's sensitive to spicy food you might want to use less or omit all together.)
2 Tbs. A1 sauce (the original recipe called for Worscestershire but I didn't have any so I subbed A1 and it was delicious!)
1 egg or egg replacer
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp ground black pepper
2 Tbs brown sugar
2 tsp A1
1 tsp water

1. I use my rice cooker to pre-cook the quinoa and follow the directions for brown rice. Here's how to cook the quinoa stove-top: Bring the quinoa and water to a boil in a saucepan over high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until the quinoa is tender, and the water has been absorbed, about 15-20 minutes. Set aside to cool. If you purchase raw quinoa, you will want to rinse it first. Quinoa in the box should be ready to go.

2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C)

3. Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Stir in the onion; cook and stir until the onion has softened and turned translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for another minute; remove from heat to cool.

4. Stir the turkey, cooked quinoa, onions, tomato paste, hot sauce, 2 Tbs. A1, egg, salt, and pepper in a large bowl until well combined (I put surgical gloves on the kids and have them help with this step). The original recipe has you form this into a loose loaf on a baking sheet. I actually make something more like meatballs in a muffin tin. It doesn't take as long to cook and it makes portion control simpler

5. The original recipe calls for mixing the brown sugar, 2 tsp. A1, and 1 tsp water in a small bowl and then rubbing it over the top of the meatloaf. I actually skip this step as the meatballs taste great and I figure "why add the extra sugar?" If you make it once and feel it needs a little extra sumthin', try adding the glaze next time.

6. Bake in the preheated oven until no longer pink in the center, about 50 minutes for a loaf, about 15-25 minutes for balls, depending on size.

When I put this into the Weight Watchers recipe builder a few months ago it came back with 2 points for a muffin-tin sized ball. If you are tracking points, you should make a batch and figure out how many servings you end up with because the size of the balls can vary so much. I'll be interested to hear what other people get when they enter the recipe into the recipe builder. I have not figured out the exact nutrition information and I wouldn't use the original recipe as a guide because that author used fattier ground turkey and I changed a few of the ingredients. But I can tell you that it's got lots of great nutrition and is a yummy dish that will hopefully please your whole family the way it does mine!


  1. Thank you for your alternate products in this recipe, it really gave me some ideas to help make other gluten free recipes too and make this one doable for the gluten allergy in our household. It went over well with the whole family as meatballs too. :-)

    1. I'm so glad your family liked it! Keep checking back for more. I'll be testing out and posting more allergy friendly recipes :) Better yet, subscribe to the blog and you'll get an update when I post a new one!