Hot and spicy, smooth, and saucy, one bite of this Curried Meatballs Skillet will bring your guests back for more.
Meatballs meet Asian spice in this Curried Meatballs Skillet, my addictive party food recipe. Curry is one of those ingredients that have a wide following; I don’t know anyone who doesn’t love it. And in this Curried Meatballs dish, the bold herbal flavors are spiked with heat and rounded out with a balance of sweetness.
While this all about the sauce, it’s the meatballs that deliver the saucy flavor. I’m going with the familiar beef, but I’ve made this with lamb meatballs, too, for a more Moroccan flair. Even chicken or pork works. And to make it even easier, feel free to buy the meatballs prepped and rolled in the meat case of your local supermarket. Just make sure they’re bite-sized (or two-bite size) for an appetizer portion.
All that said, and that’s a mouthful, there is one piece of advice that must be said: make plenty. When I first made this dish, one skillet full was not enough, Not even close. I’m scaling my recipe for a party of ten, so scale up from there depending on your guest count. And if you have leftovers (you won’t) this freezes, thaws, and microwaves with perfect results.
Give this Curried Meatballs Skillet recipe a try, and I assure you great results.
- 2 pounds ground beef
- ½ cup grated yellow onion
- 1 tablespoon Acadiana Table Cajun Seasoning Blend, see recipe here
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1 cup finely diced yellow onion
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 tablespoon ground ginger
- 4 tablespoons curry powder
- 2 teaspoons turmeric
- 1 teaspoon white pepper
- ½ teaspoon Kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon Acadiana Table Cajun Seasoning Blend, see recipe here
- 2 cinnamon sticks or 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 2 (13.5 ounce) cans coconut milk
- 2 bay leaves
- 4 star anise
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
- ¼ cup chopped cilantro
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch, optional
- Cilantro leaves, for garnish
- Lime wedges, for garnish
- In a large mixing bowl, add the ground beef, onion, Cajun seasoning, garlic powder, ginger, oregano, salt, and pepper. Combine until thoroughly mixed. Form into bite-size balls approximately 1 inch in diameter.
- In a skillet with a heavy lid over medium-high heat, add the oil. Once sizzling, add the meatballs and sear on all sides until browned, about 10 minutes. Add two tablespoons of water to the pan and cover. Let cook in the steam until the water evaporates, and the meat is fully cooked, about 10 minutes. Remove and keep warm.
- In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, add the oil. Add the onion and cook until transparent, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, ginger, curry powder, turmeric, white pepper, salt, Cajun seasoning, and cinnamon, and sauté 2 minutes. Add the coconut milk and bring to a boil. Lower the heat to a simmer and add the bay leaves, star anise, honey, lime juice, and chopped cilantro. Cook until the mixture begins to thicken, about 10 minutes.
- Sample the sauce and adjust the seasonings to your taste by adding more salt and spice.
- Optional: To thicken the sauce, make a slurry by combining equal parts cornstarch and cold water. Mix and add to the pan. Once it comes to the boil, it will thicken enough to coat the back of a spoon.
- Combine the meatballs with the sauce and add back to the skillet. Garnish with cilantro leaves and lime wedges. Serve hot.
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Hello George! I chanced upon your site when looking for a recipe for stuffed turkey wings. I’ll be making yours as soon as I can track down some wings. I’ve just spent the last hour looking around your site and have saved so many of your delicious sounding recipes. This one here, though, really captures my attention with the addition of curry powder and coconut milk – staples in my house. I can already tell it is going to be well-received by my family and friends. Thank you so much for sharing!
George Graham says
Hey Dellavon- Thanks for the well-crafted comment. I am the first to admit that curry is not an ingredient common to Cajun cooking, but like you, it is a staple in my spice rack, and when combined with coconut milk, it speaks to me. Please be sure to give us an update on your dish and send more great comments.
I plan on making this for dinner this evening as a main course. Any thoughts on what to serve with it? Rice, or is there enough sauce to use some kind of noodles? Vegetable or salad?
George Graham says
I like your thinking, and I would definitely serve it over Jasmine rice with a side salad. In fact, why not a cold Asian noodle salad. Recently, I experimented with Soba noodles, a buckwheat-based noodle, with spectacular results. First, buy the noodles that are mixed with another wheat or rice flour, not the 100% buckwheat. Make a dressing with ginger, mirin, sesame oil, and white miso paste and toss in some sliced green onions, shredded carrots, and cilantro along with a sprinkle of sesame seeds. You can find all of these ingredients at Whole Foods or Drug Emporium in Lafayette. I don’t have a specific recipe, but if you do a Google search for “cold Soba noodle salad,” you should find lots of options. All the best.