Easy Lamb Meatballs with Mint and Tomato Sauce Recipe

Lamb Meatballs with Mint in Tomato Sauce - Albondigas de Cordero. (c) 2014 Lisa Sierra Licensed to About.com Inc.
  • 32 mins
  • Prep: 7 mins,
  • Cook: 25 mins
  • Yield: 20 meatballs (4 servings)
Ratings (4)

Meatballs are not just Italian! The Spanish have a big variety of meatball dishes, too.  One thing that they all have in common is that they each have a wonderful sauce, like this one. 

Fresh mint is a wonderful flavor compliment to lamb. These simple lamb meatballs are made with just bread crumbs and egg, and flavored with finely chopped mint leaves. The meatballs are then fried in olive oil. Next, a tomato sauce is made with onion, garlic, wine and beef broth to make the sauce flavorful and rich. Meatballs are simmered in the sauce, and served warm with baguette slices to soak up the tomato sauce. 

What You'll Need

  • For the Meatballs:
  • 1 lb. lean ground lamb (or 1/2 lb ground lamb and 1/2 lb ground beef)
  • 1 Large egg
  • 1/4 cup bread crumbs (plain, not seasoned)
  • 2 Tbsp. mint (leaves only)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup olive oil (virgin, for frying)
  • For the Sauce:
  • 1 Medium onion
  • 1 to 2 Large garlic cloves
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1/2 cup beef broth
  • 1 cup tomato sauce

How to Make It

  1. Remove mint leaves from stems, and finely chop. Peel and finely chop the onion and garlic clove, and set aside.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, combine the ground lamb (or lamb and beef) with the egg, bread crumbs and the chopped mint. Season with salt and pepper. Using your hands, form the lamb mixture into balls, about one-inch in size (2.5 cm).
  3. Pour the olive oil in a large frying pan, and heat on medium to medium high heat. Oil should be 1/4 to 1/2-inch in depth. When the oil is hot, add the meatballs and fry, turning over to cook on both sides.  This will take 8-10 minutes Remove meatballs from pan and allow to drain on a paper towel.
  1. Using the same frying pan where meatballs were fried, pour off excess oil, leaving a few tablespoons in the bottom of the pan. Add the chopped onion and garlic to the pan, and cook over moderate heat until the onion is translucent, about 8 minutes. Add the wine and beef broth. Return the meatballs to the pan. Pour in the tomato sauce. Adjust salt to taste. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
  2. Remove the pan from heat and allow the meatballs to sit for 5 minutes before serving. Serve warm with baguette slices.

Alternative Recipe: Substitute 2 Tbsp finely chopped cilantro leaves instead of the mint.

More Spanish Meatball Recipes

  • Meatballs with Parsley Sauce Recipe - Albondigas con Salsa de Perejil
  • Spanish Stewed Meatballs Recipe - Albondigas Guisadas
  • Spanish Lamb Meatballs with Mushroom Sauce Recipe - Albondigas con Salsa
  • Andalucian Meatballs Recipe - Albondigas a la Andaluza