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Sweet & Sour Meatballs with Coconut Cauliflower Rice

These sweet & sour meatballs are so yummy, it never even crosses your mind that they might be healthy. The sauce is flavorful and goes perfectly with the toasted coconut in the cauliflower rice. It is a great meal prep option too because the flavors get even better over time. My husband loves it for his work lunches.

*originally published July 2018, post & photos updated 9/8/19

Sweet & Sour Meatballs in a large white skillet topped with sliced green onions

I have made this recipe in the slow cooker and on the stove top. Both options are great, the slow cooker is perfect for a leave it and go meal and the skillet version is perfect for a quick dinner option.

To make the meatballs, I combine the ingredients in a large mixing bowl using my hands. It’s the best way to make sure that everything gets incorporated. Then I use an ice scream scoop to scoop out the meat mixture and form into meatballs. It makes it go so much faster! For the slow cooker, I place the raw meatballs in the bottom gently. If I am making the sauce on the stovetop, I bake the meatballs on a lined baking sheet first.

Sweet & Sour Meatballs with Coconut Cauliflower Rice in a white serving bowl, topped with green onions and sesame seeds

The sauce is so easy to make and it has the perfect blend of sweet and sour. I use Tessemae’s Unsweetened Ketchup as the base of this sauce. It is Whole30 compliant and absolutely delicious. I use canned pineapple for this recipe because I also want the juice that the pineapple comes in. The reserved pineapple juice is added to the sauce and it is so good. Dates are my sweetener of choice for a sauce like this. They not only sweeten it up but add even more depth of flavor.

Sweet & Sour Meatballs

The coconut cauliflower rice is such a nice base for the meatballs and all that delicious sauce! It is really simple to make and adds another layer of flavor. I use unsweetened shredded coconut and lightly toast them in the pan first, then I set them aside. Frozen riced cauliflower is my favorite option when I want a quick meal, so I add that to the pan next with a little oil. It takes less than 10 minutes to cook! Just add the toasted coconut back in with a pinch of salt and you are done.

Used in this Recipe:

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Sweet & Sour Meatballs with Coconut Cauliflower Rice

Sara
Tender and flavorful meatballs in a beautiful sweet & sour sauce served over coconut cauliflower rice
5 from 3 votes
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 40 mins
Course Main Course
Servings 6 servings
Calories 583 kcal

Ingredients
  

Meatballs

  • 2 lbs Ground Beef
  • 1 Tbls Coconut Aminos
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1/2 tsp Pepper
  • 1/4 tsp Ground Ginger

Sweet & Sour Sauce

  • 1 Tbls Avocado Oil or oil of choice
  • 1 Bell Pepper Green (chopped)
  • 1 Bell Pepper Red (chopped)
  • 1/2 cup Red Onion diced
  • 2 cloves Garlic minced
  • 2 Tbls Coconut Aminos
  • 1 Tbls Rice Wine Vinegar
  • 1 cup Cubed Pineapple
  • 1 cup Unsweetened Ketchup I use Tessemae's
  • 1/2 cup Pineapple Juice
  • 4 Pitted Dates soaked & pureed

Coconut Cauliflower Rice

  • 1 cup Unsweetened Shredded Coconut
  • 1/2 Tbls Avocado Oil or oil of choice
  • 2 cups Cauliflower Rice frozen
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1 Tbls Sesame Seeds
  • 2 Tbls Green Onions chopped

Instructions
 

Stove Top

  • Pre-heat the oven to 425' and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper
  • Add the meatball ingredients to a large mixing bowl and use hands to combine all the ingredients until fully incorporated
    Use an ice cream scoop to scoop the meat mixture onto the lined baking sheet. Use hands to roll into balls. Sprinkle the top with a little salt and pepper and bake in pre-heated oven for 10 minutes
  • While the meatballs are baking, get the sauce started.
    Heat 1 Tbls of oil in a large skillet at medium heat and add in the bell peppers and red onion. Saute for 3 minutes. Then add in the minced garlic and saute for another minute
  • Add in the coconut aminos, vinegar, ketchup, pineapple juice and pureed dates** Stir and bring to a boil, then redcue to a simmer
    Add the baked meatballs and pineapple to the simmering sauce, cover and let simmer for 10 minutes
  • In a separate non-stick skillet, add the unsweetened coconut to the dry pan over medium/low heat. Stir and let cook until just lightly toasted (light brown color) then remove from pan and set aside
    Add in the oil and turn heat to medium, add in the frozen riced cauliflower and cook for about 7 minutes until the liquid has evaporated and the rice is fluffy. Mix in the toasted coconut and salt
  • Serve the meatballs and sauce over the coconut cauliflower rice and top with sliced green onions and seasame seeds

Slow Cooker

  • Add the meatball ingredients to a large mixing bowl and use hands to combine all the ingredients until fully incorporated
    Use and ice cream scoop to scoop the meat mixture and form into balls. Layer the meatballs gently in the bottom of the slow cooker
    Add all the of the sauce ingredients to the slow cooker, over top the meatballs. Do not stir, you don't want the meatballs to fall apart. Cook on low for 4 hours or on high for 2. Meatballs should be completely cooked through
  • In a separate non-stick skillet, add the unsweetened coconut to the dry pan over medium/low heat. Stir and let cook until just lightly toasted (light brown color) then remove from pan and set aside
    Add in the oil and turn heat to medium, add in the frozen riced cauliflower and cook for about 7 minutes until the liquid has evaporated and the rice is fluffy. Mix in the toasted coconut and salt
  • Serve the meatballs and sauce over the coconut cauliflower rice and top with sliced green onions and seasame seeds

Notes

*Let the pitted dates sit in 1/4 cup hot water for 5 minutes. Then use immersion blender or food processor to puree them with the liquid 

Nutrition

Calories: 583kcalCarbohydrates: 33gProtein: 29gFat: 38gFiber: 6g
Keyword gluten free, paleo, whole 30
Tried this recipe?Mention @thebetteredblondie

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