It’s cocktail party season, and every good cocktail deserves a good meatball don’t you think? (I will refrain from making a dirty joke here) These little guys are the perfect party snack, and super easy to make and transport as they are good hot out of the oven but also good at room temperature. This recipe is also kid friendly, just don’t ask the little ones to spell prosciutto (don’t ask me how to spell it either, I had to get a little help from Google).  Enjoy these little balls of meaty goodness!


  • 3 slices Italian bread, torn into small bits (1 cup)
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 3 ounces sliced pancetta, finely chopped (you can also use bacon or prosciutto)
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 small garlic clove, minced
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 pound ground turkey (ground chicken is good too)
  • 2 TB tomato paste, divided
  • 3 TB finely chopped flat-leaf parsley (or 1 TB dried)
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • Salt and Pepper


1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees with a rack in the upper third of the oven.  Coat a large baking dish with cooking spray.

2. Soak the torn bread in the milk in a small bowl until softened, about four minutes.

3. Heat 1 TB of the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the pancetta (or bacon or prosciutto), onion, and garlic and season with salt and pepper. Cook until the onion is softened, about 6 minutes. Set aside to cool.

4. Squeeze the bread to remove excess milk, then discard milk. Lightly beat the egg in a large bowl, then add the turkey, 1 TB of the tomato paste, pancetta mixture, bread, and parsley.

5. Form the mixture into balls.  You can make 12 large meatballs or 24 bite sized meatballs. Place meatballs on the baking dish.

6. Stir together 1 TB tomato paste and 1 TB olive oil, and brush over the meatballs.

7. Bake 18-22 minutes or until cooked through.


Source: Adapted From Smitten Kitchen