Moroccan-Inspired Lentils with Turkey Meatballs

Hello-hello, friends!

I think we made it! I think this is it! I think we officially made it to warmer weather! Yesterday we finally got to do some yard work, which was great, since we got to see what survived this wacky winter and nutty last couple of days full of thunderstorms! Phew!

I hope you’re all doing well and are looking forward to a new review! This week we’ll be checking out a recipe using lentils! I’ve been exploring options within my weekly dinner menu that are higher in protein. Now, just like anything, lentils should be consumed in moderation as the high amount of fiber may cause some discomfort here and there. Plus, sometimes the way lentils are prepared (i.e which spices are used), may cause indigestion. So…lentils are good for you, yes, but just like anything good for you, do some reading ;).

I wanted to look around for a recipe that I wanted to share for this blog and I think I found it!

This week we’re checking out a recipe for Moroccan-Inspired Lentils with Turkey Meatballs!

This recipe is by Taste and See and you can find the recipe right -> here!

Moroccan inspired lentils and turkey meatballs

Making The Meatballs For The Lentil Dish

When I first came across this recipe, I was thinking that I would have to brown the meatballs in a pan in batches, and then get to the rest of the recipe. Honestly, I love cooking, but during the week I just don’t care to do that. I just want to get a dinner together quickly and sit down to relax after a long day.

This is where I really started marking positive points for this recipe. Once you combine all the ingredients for the meatballs together (holy crap–this mix smells AMAZING) and shape them, you can arrange the meatballs on a sheet tray to bake in the oven at 350 F for only about 10 minutes. There are no instructions to flip the meatballs, but know that ten minutes is certainly not long enough to fully cook the turkey meatballs. Do not be alarmed. There is still more cooking to do after the quick bake!

I do like that at least those ten minutes are spent in the oven, because it gives you enough time to prep everything else that will be cooked in the pan. Again, by not having to stop and cook everything step by step, it does help keep things moving along for a delightful weeknight meal.

Moroccan inspired lentils

Cooking The Lentils With The Spices

The flavors of the lentils build up with each ingredient and spice that is added. To start the base of this dish, the recipe calls for onion, garlic, and carrot. Now, I actually ran out of carrots, so I ended up using a red bell pepper. It actually ended up working quite well. It had a nice pop of color, and it also had a great texture that wasn’t too mushy, and it wasn’t tough either. But if you’re following the recipe exactly, for sure, please do use the carrot. My not using carrots has nothing to do with me not liking them ;). Not at all.

Once the base is cooked down a bit, you can toss in the spices indicated on the recipe card. The aroma! My goodness! It’s not too spicy, not too sharp, it’s just overall very fragrant and comforting. You wouldn’t think that you’d have a recipe like this done during the week. But overall, the ingredients used are nothing out of the ordinary, so it’s absolutely possible to get this on the table during the week.

Moroccan inspired lentils cooking

How Long Does it Take?

The recipe card indicates that this recipe will take 35 minutes. Do I find that to be accurate? Ehh…well. Debatable. If you’re working really quickly and not going step by step, carefully, then sure I’m sure you can knock it out quickly.

For my first time making this recipe, I spent just a little over an hour, I think. I took the time to get make the meatballs, then while they were in the oven, I started on the lentils in the pan. Now the onion, garlic, red bell pepper (carrot) mix took a few minutes to soften up before the spices and lentils were added. That already was probably at around 20 minutes, if not longer. Then, you have to let the lentils cook in the broth for 18-20 minutes. That’s accurate. So already we’re at 40 minutes. Once cooked to your liking, you end up adding in the meatballs, the canned diced tomato, and the parsley to cook for another 10 minutes.

When I make a recipe the first time, I work extra carefully as to not miss any steps or to analyze any steps that could be missing from recipe cards. In this case, the recipe card was accurate with its steps, but not about the time. So if you’re looking for a recipe that could be done in 30 minutes–you can make this happen by prepping ahead of time. But making things from start to finish for this recipe? Allow yourself at least a full hour.

Moroccan Lentils with Turkey Meatballs

Grey’s Grade: 4/5

I sincerely enjoyed this recipe for Moroccan-Inspired Lentils with Turkey Meatballs. Seriously. The aroma is so incredibly inviting. But the flavor?? Awesome. The turkey meatballs are packed with so much deliciousness. The fresh parsley really comes through as well as the subtleness of the ground cloves. This isn’t your traditional meatball you’d have with spaghetti. Frankly, I prefer these to what is deemed “traditional”.

And a quick note for my gluten-free friends–this is super simple to make and keep gluten-friendly. Use gluten-free bread crumbs. I ended up using gluten-free panko that I crushed finely. As for the lentils? Lentils are naturally gluten-free, but due to risk of cross-contamination in some facilities, do rinse your lentils before cooking.

It’s amazing to know that something so yummy can come together during the week. Nothing bland about this recipe for sure. I would absolutely recommend this recipe for anyone looking to jazz up their weekday menu!

The only reason this recipe does not get a 5/5 from me is due to the fact that I do not find the time on the card to be accurate. I do not see this being prepped, cooked, and on the table in 35 minutes. I don’t think that’s realistic. So if you’re basing a recipe just off the amount of time it requires of you, then this isn’t accurate, unfortunately. Still worth making tho–just leave yourself enough time!

What are your favorite recipes to make during the week?

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  1. Great review! The recipe sounds amazing and your detailed description of the cooking process is helpful. I appreciate your honesty about the time it takes to make the dish.
    Emily Jenkins

    • Thank you so much for your comment ! It’s my pleasure! Taste is certainly a big part of these recipes but time? Phew—sometimes you don’t realize how much time something takes until you’re scrambling and you’re thinking “what the heck! This was supposed to be super quick!” 😉

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