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Meatball Sticks with Chunky Dipping Sauce


This family-style appetizer went over really well even with the adults. The pretzel sticks are extra crunchy after baking and are a good contrast to the well-seasoned meatballs. The tomato dipping sauce is simple to make and really tasty. It can be made in advance and frozen.


Prepare the Meatballs

Yields 30 meatballs

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (175 degrees Celsius). Line a large baking sheet with Gefen Parchment Paper and spray lightly with oil spray. Set aside.
2. In a large bowl, combine the beef, turkey, 1/3 cup panko crumbs, soy milk, and eggs. Mix together well.
3. In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the knife attachment, place the parsley, basil, garlic, salt, pepper, red pepper, olive oil, and walnut pieces. Process until the mixture is finely chopped. Add to the meat mixture in the bowl. Mix until well combined.
4. Place the remaining one cup of panko crumbs on a large plate. Roll the meat mixture into medium-sized balls and roll in the panko to fully coat. Place on the prepared baking sheet, slightly apart. Spray balls well with cooking spray.
5. Gently press a pretzel stick into the center of each meatball, taking care that it is straight. Carefully place tray in oven and bake for 25–30 minutes, or until done. Don’t overbake or the meatballs will dry out.

Prepare the Dipping Sauce

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (175 degrees Celsius).
2. Place pepper and onion on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Drizzle with olive oil and bake for about 20 minutes or until beginning to char.
3. Peel pepper. Blend pepper, onion, and canned tomatoes in a food processor fitted with the knife attachment until well blended but still chunky.
4. Add seasoning and pulse until incorporated. Taste and adjust seasoning if desired.

To Serve

1. Place dipping sauce in a small bowl on a tray with the meatball sticks.
2. Garnish with basil ribbons.


If you prefer softer meatballs, you can reduce the amount of panko in the meat mixture, or eliminate it altogether. Just make sure you mix it together well so it doesn’t fall apart during baking.


Food and Prop Styling by Renee Muller
Photography by Moshe Wulliger