Recipe of the month – Turkey meatballs


Katie Bishop is back with another recipe to make your mouth water …

This recipe is fantastic, as Katie has thought this would be a great recipe to make, after having seen the conversation with Jo and Dr Sophie Bostock  on sleep ….

So, over to Katie …

Now, I am not a nutritionist, but there is anecdotal evidence to suggest that eating turkey can help you sleep!

According to ‘Turkey has a few properties that explain why some people become tired after eating it, or think it encourages sleepiness. Most notably, it contains the amino acid tryptophan, which increases the production of melatonin.’

The protein in turkey may also contribute to its ability to promote tiredness.

There’s evidence that consuming moderate amounts of protein before bed is associated with better sleep quality, including less waking up throughout the night.

Although it is clear that more research is necessary to confirm turkey’s potential role in improving sleep.

I’ve heard that almonds, walnuts, dairy and bananas are also thought to be helpful when it comes to dropping off … but as I say, I’m not a nutritionist. All I know is they’re all really tasty and are great as part of a balanced diet, so if they help sleep too, then that’s just a bonus!


Katie will be back next month with something else delicious to try.

In the meantime, you can find out more about her at or follow her on Instagram at @ktbishopcooks


Preparation time: 20 minutes
Time to cook: 45-55 minutes
Serves: 6 people

These meatballs are really quick and easy to make, so they’re perfect for a meal during the week.

They also contain lots of ‘hidden’ vegetables and so they are great for increasing your daily quota, or to help when it comes to feeding children who don’t overly enjoy eating them!

You can freeze these meatballs along with the sauce (either together or separately) so they’re always ready to use for a quick midweek meal. Simply defrost in the fridge overnight, and of course – always be sure to heat them thoroughly before seaving.


1 onion, peeled
1 stick celery
1 carrot, peeled
1 clove garlic
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp dried thyme (optional)
2 x 400g cans chopped tomatoes
1 tsp sugar
500g turkey thigh mince
2 tbsp breadcrumbs
2 tbsp freshly grated Parmesan (or extra mature Cheddar)
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce

Let’s get cooking …

  1. Add the onion, celery, carrot and garlic into a food processor and blitz until very finely chopped (or if you’re feeling energetic, you can do this by hand). Reserve 2 tablespoons of the mixture for the meatballs (step 4).
  2. Next, warm the oil in a large, heavy frying pan or shallow casserole dish, add the vegetable mixture, along with the thyme (as an option), and cook over a low heat, stirring occasionally, for around 10 minutes.
  3. Add the chopped tomatoes, remembering to fill up each empty can with water and add that to the pan too. Season with the sugar, 1 tsp sea salt flakes and a good grind of pepper. Stir well, letting the mixture come to the boil, then turn the heat down and simmer gently while you make the meatballs.
  4. Put the reserved blitzed veg into a large mixing bowl with the mince, breadcrumbs, cheese and Worcestershire sauce. Season with 1/2 tsp sea salt flakes and mix together well with your hands.
  5. Moisten your hands with a little cold water and roll teaspoon sized pieces of the mixture into balls. Put each one onto a large, lined baking tray or board as you go, to make about 50 little meatballs (or fewer bigger ones! Size is completely up to you!).
  6. Add the meatballs into the simmering sauce – working from the outside of the pan, inwards, in concentric circles. Simmer gently for 20-30 minutes, turning the balls over halfway through, until they are thoroughly cooked and there is no pink meat.
  7. I would suggest you serve them with pasta, rice, couscous or even a jacket potato or wrap.