Sesame Pork Meatballs

Sesame Pork Meatballs are the perfect appetizer, hors d’oeuvre, main course, or snack… delicious and healing!
sesame pork meatballs

If it’s getting close to dinner time and I still have no idea what to make or what I’m in the mood for, my go-to is oftentimes some kind of meatball. I always keep a variety of organic ground meats in my freezer just for times like this. This recipe for sesame pork meatballs was born on one of these nights.

I go through phases with foods and cooking. Sometimes I will make the same type of ethnic food for weeks at a time, just because that’s what I’m feelin’ at the time. I learned long ago that when I cook what I’m in the mood for and what my body is craving, the food comes out awesome. If I make something that I really have no interest in… ummmm…. it can come out really bad. And yes, I too have some epic kitchen failures.

Asian food is one cuisine that I have a love-hate relationship with. I can go for months without touching it and then… bam… I have to have it. A lot.

Last week, when I was hot and tired and didn’t feel like cooking but I also didn’t feel like going out, I opened my freezer and peeked in. I did what most of us do: I stood there and stared. I moved some things around as if by doing so something new would appear. Needless to say, it didn’t.

I really do keep several packages of ground meat in the freezer. I’ve got ground lamb, bison, beef, pork, and chicken in there right now as I write this post. When I know the flavors I’m in the mood for, ground meat can become my canvas for those flavors. That’s what happened here. These sesame pork meatballs have a slight Asian taste and that’s exactly what I wanted. And the sesame seed coating makes them a little crunchy… yum… just perfect.

I didn’t use any grains in these meatballs. Instead, I used chickpea crumbs. This is an awesome invention — they are sold in bags in lots of markets now and I just love to substitute them for breadcrumbs. (See the recipe below, for  details on the chickpea crumbs I used.)

These are not messy balls. They can be eaten with your fingers. And that is my favorite way to eat everything. The sesame seed coating helps keep the moisture and juices inside the meatballs… kind of like M&Ms. Well, not exactly, but I think you get the picture. Pick one up, dip it in your favorite Asian dipping sauce, and pop it in your mouth. Perfection.

If you’re a meatball fan like I am, you should also try my recipe for Paleo Buffalo Chicken Meatballs With Ranch.

sesame pork meatballs

I love to customize recipes for specific health concerns. Let me customize a meatball recipe for you that will work for whatever’s going on in your body now… I’m such a geek that I really do get excited about doing this. So CLICK HERE to be taken directly into my calendar to sign up for your free phone consultation.

sesame pork meatballs

Here are some of the great healing ingredients in this recipe for sesame pork meatballs:

Pork strengthens the digestive system, helps with constipation, and can moisten a dry cough and other dryness in the body. It’s also good to strengthen your qi and give you energy.

Sesame seeds (the black ones) are a Chinese herb (Hei Zhi Ma). Black foods, in Chinese medicine, are knows as longevity foods. This herb is good for so many things, including headaches, constipation, dizziness, and even helping with lactation. White sesame seeds also have many great nutritional benefits. They are also an anti-aging food. If you have backaches, hair thats graying way too fast, ringing in the ears, weak knees, blurry vision or general weakness, go for the sesame seeds; just sprinkle them on everything. Long ago in China, sesame seeds were ground into honey to form a paste and was taken as a medicine to counter old-age and weakness. You can use black sesame seeds, white sesame seeds, or a combination of both for this recipe.

Chickpeas actually help calm the spirit. They relieve anxiety and soothe irritability… it kind of makes you realize why hummus is so popular. I used chickpea crumbs instead of breadcrumbs in these meatballs.

sesame pork meatballs

If you make these Sesame Pork Meatballs, please be sure to let me know in the comments below. I love hearing how you like a recipe, and I love to answer your questions! If you make it, be sure to take a photo and tag me and post it on Instagram.

Sesame Pork Meatballs
Recipe type: meatballs, appetizer, hors d'oeuvre, finger food, main course
Cuisine: Asian, grain-free, dairy-free, gluten-free
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12-15 balls
These meatballs have a slight Asian taste and they are crispy on the outside and so moist on the inside... delicious and healing!
  • 1 lb ground pork
  • ¼ cup ketchup
  • sea salt and black pepper, to taste
  • ½ tsp tandoori spice (or use your favorite Asian spice)
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 2 tsp dried minced onion flakes
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • ¼ cup chickpea crumbs (or substitute your favorite crumbs)
  • ½ cup raw sesame seeds
  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
  2. Line a rimmed baking tray with parchment paper.
  3. Combine all ingredients, except sesame seeds, in a large bowl.
  4. Mush it up with your hands until it's combined.
  5. Form the mixture into golf-ball size balls.
  6. Pour the sesame seeds onto a plate.
  7. Roll the balls in the seeds so they are coated on all sides.
  8. Arrange the balls on the tray so that they are not touching each other.
  9. Bake for 10 mins, then flip them over and bake for another 10 mins or until they are cooked through.
  10. Serve alone or with your favorite Asian dipping sauce.
  11. Enjoy!

sesame pork meatballs

Paleo Meatloaf

Sometimes you just need a comforting paleo meatloaf… and oh how good the leftovers are…

paleo meatloaf

I’m a pretty fickle foodie. One month I’m all gung-ho vegan and then another month I’m all about the meat. This month I’m a little bit vegan and a little bit meat-y. But, I am almost always a Paleo eater. I learned many years ago that my body feels best without grains and without dairy. But, if I eat grass-fed organic meat, I’m also good. So, believe you me, I love to take advantage of those facts.

This meatloaf came to be last week when I was craving meat. I didn’t even realize it at the time, but all week long I was making recipes out of various types of ground meat. It’s making me laugh now when I think back on Steve’s face when I put a different variety of meatballs in front of him several meals in a row. Then, I moved on to meatloaf. Which I happen to love.

Truth be told, I love meatloaf, but nobody else in my house does. So, that means there’s a boat-load of leftover meatloaf in my fridge each time I make it. Have you ever made a leftover meatloaf wrap for lunch… OMG it’s sooooo good. And this time, I even made a bolognese sauce out of a few slices. Then, I made a sweet potato hash with meatloaf chunks one day. I don’t know why, but my family will eat all of these reconstituted meatloaf recipes, but they back away from the fresh thing. Go figure.

I’ve probably made hundreds of different types of meatloaf over the years. I figured it was about time I made a traditional meatloaf that was also paleo-friendly.

Take my word for it, you are not going to miss the bread in this meatloaf. And your gut will thank you. Oh, and your tastebuds will be pretty happy too…

This meatloaf has no grains and no dairy. It’s made with homemade ketchup, but you can buy a jar of paleo ketchup if you’d prefer to use that. I hid some hemp seeds in the loaf for some extra nutrition and I ground up some zucchini for a little added moisture. I think the next time I make it, I may even try to substitute some mushrooms for the zucchini and see how that tastes.

Bottom line: even if your family says no to meatloaf — like my crazy crew — make this anyway, because you will love it, and the leftovers are amazing!

If you like this recipe for paleo meatloaf, you will also love my recipe for Paleo Cheese-Stuffed Meatballs!

paleo meatloaf

paleo meatloaf

Here are some of the awesome healing powers of this paleo meatloaf:

Beef is good for a lot of ailments. It’s good for edema/swelling in the body, it helps many people with their weak back and knees and, believe it or not, it’s good for that bloated, distended feeling we sometimes get in our stomachs. In the olden days, beef was stewed for hours so that the liquid could be sipped to combat chronic diarrhea. I use grass-fed beef whenever possible.

Onions are great for your immune system; they are a natural antihistamine. Recently, I recommended that a patient with bronchitis put sliced raw onions in her socks when she went to sleep… she woke up so much better; they actually can rid the body of bacteria. (I know I’ve told you this before, but it really is awesome!) Onion is a superhero in the food world!

Parsley has been shown to reduce tumors in the lungs and to neutralize the effects of carcinogens, including cigarette smoke. It is high in vitamins A and C, and is good for your heart. This herb is also a natural breath freshener. So, if you have a chance to use more than a few sprigs as a garnish, go for it.

Hemp seeds are a superfood. They are high in protein, easily digestible, and contain a full complement of amino acids. They contain disease-fighting phytonutrients that are good for your blood, immune system, tissues and skin. Hemp contains a specific fatty acid that acts as a powerful anti-inflammatory. It also helps balance hormones, making it a great choice to fight the symptoms of PMS. This super seed is also good for your liver and your brain.

Zucchini cools your body off and makes you feel better during those hot days of summer. It helps your body release excess heat and it will make your mind feel more calm.

In eastern medicine, nuts are known to be good for your brain, heart, skin and reproductive system. Almonds are particularly nutritious. They are a good source of protein and they give you energy. And, they are gluten-free. Almonds will help relieve a cough and asthma and are also good for constipation. This recipe uses almond flour.

In Chinese medicine, we use tomatoes to aid in digestion and to help detoxify the body. They are also good to combat excess cholesterol, lessen inflammation and curb asthma. Tomatoes can also quench thirst, and they can help fight some kidney infections.

paleo meatloaf

Paleo Meatloaf
Recipe type: paleo, whole30
Cuisine: meatloaf, comfort food
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
This meatloaf is comfort food to the max. It's got everything you need and want and it makes for the best leftovers ever!
  • 1 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • sea salt and black pepper, to taste
  • 5 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 lb ground beef
  • 1 small zucchini, grated and squeezed as dry as possible
  • ⅓ cup almond flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 Tbs ketchup
  • ⅓ cup minced fresh parsley
  • ⅓ cup hemp seeds
  1. Preheat your oven to 375°F.
  2. Line a 9x5-in. loaf pan with parchment paper.
  3. In a skillet, heat the oil over medium heat.
  4. Add the onion and some salt and pepper.
  5. Cook, stirring, until the onions begin to soften, then add the garlic and stir for an additional 30 seconds.
  6. In a large bowl, combine the ground meat, squeezed grated zucchini, almond flour, eggs, ketchup, parsley, and hemp seeds, and cooked onion mixture.
  7. Get in there with your hands, and mush it up until combined.
  8. Put the meat mixture into your lined loaf pan and spread it out evenly.
  9. Bake for 30 minutes, then spread the ketchup on the top and bake for an additional 40 minutes, or until its' cooked through.
  10. Remove from oven and let cook slightly.
  11. Slice and enjoy.
  12. Store the leftovers in the fridge and make lots of great stuff with it all week!

paleo meatloaf

Healthy Homemade Ketchup

I’m a condiment freak — I like to dip everything. So, this healthy homemade ketchup is a must in my house!

It’s true. We are a condiments-all-the-time household. We can find a reason to dip everything in something. A few years ago it started to bother me that so much of our fridge was filled with jars and bottles that had ingredients that I would normally never use when I cooked . So, I started making my own. OMG — we are so much better off. This ketchup is especially delicious, and it doesn’t have all of the sugar that commercial ketchup has. And yes, I too used to be a Heinz lover… but now we really do all love this healthy homemade ketchup. Try it… you’ll love it too.

One day, when Steve was slathering his food with ketchup, as was his usual M.O., I had that light-bulb-over-head moment and I began creating homemade healthy condiments. Now, let me tell you, he used to really piss me off. I mean, how do you not even taste your food before you drown it in ketchup? I once heard a story about a hiring partner in a huge corporate firm who would take his interview candidates out to lunch and observe them. If they salted their food before tasting it, they wouldn’t be hired because he thought there was not enough thought and consideration in this gesture. Same goes for ketchup.

The creation of this recipe required a lot of trial and error. We ate a lot of ketchup that wasn’t… ummmm… wasn’t… worthy of the name ketchup. I tried all kinds of ingredients to get the right balance of sweet and tangy. For us, this recipe is the perfect balance. It’s the right consistency, and it tastes awesome.

You’ll notice that this recipe contains prunes. I know that sounds weird, but they really give this ketchup just the right taste. So, you’ll need to use a high-speed blender if you want your ketchup to be really smooth.

Another thing I used to buy but now I like to make homemade is Vegan Cashew Cream Cheese.

healthy homemade ketchup

healthy homemade ketchup

Hear are some of the great healing ingredients in this healthy homemade ketchup recipe:

In Chinese medicine, we use prunes to reduce stomach acidity and to help smooth the digestion. The claim to fame of the prune is that it helps fight against constipation. This is true, and when you clear your intestines, you are also taking a great step toward preventing colon cancer. These dried plums also are great for your vision and they have enough potassium to make them an official heart-healthy food.

In Chinese medicine, we use tomatoes to aid in digestion and to help detoxify the body. They are also good to combat excess cholesterol, lessen inflammation and curb asthma. Tomatoes can also quench thirst, and they can help fight some kidney infections.

Raw apple cider vinegar is one of the most amazing ingredients available today. My husband and I really do take a big spoon of it every day along with our other supplements. It helps you maintain a healthy alkaline level in your body, detoxifies the liver, and is good for your heart. This vinegar helps intestinal function, much the way probiotics do. It also acts as an antacid and can help break down mucous in the body.

healthy homemade ketchup

Healthy Homemade Ketchup
Recipe type: condiment
Cuisine: paleo, vegan, vegetarian
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: ½ cup
Look at all of the jars in bottles in your fridge. They contain so much sugar! If you are a ketchup lover, you've got to make this recipe for healthy homemade ketchup and store it in your fridge.
  • 6 pitted prunes
  • 7 oz tomato paste
  • 2 Tbs raw apple cider vinegar
  • ½ tsp paprika
  • ¾ tsp garlic powder
  • ¾ tsp dried minced onion flakes
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • black pepper, to taste
  • water, as needed
  1. Put all of the ingredients, and 5 Tbs water into a high-speed blender.
  2. Whiz it up. Add more water if necessary to get this ketchup to the desired consistency.
  3. Store in an air-tight jar in the fridge.
  4. Enjoy on everything!

healthy homemade ketchup

Saucy Peach Chicken

This saucy peach chicken is made with peach preserves so you can make it even when fresh peaches are not available!

saucy peach chicken

Are you like me in that even though you are an adult, you still go through “phases”? I remember when my kids were young, I would hope that so many behaviors were “just a phase”. Well, now I’m a lot older and I hope a lot wiser, but I still go through phases.

Thankfully a lot of my phases are centered around my cooking and my eating, so nothing too bad can happen. Unless of course it’s a really fattening phase…

The phase I seem to be in now is a cooking with fruit phase. I don’t know what it is, and I didn’t even recognize that I was doing it until recently, but every recipe I’m cooking lately has fruit in it. I’ve been using all versions — fresh, frozen, jarred… I’m Stacey and I’m addicted to fruit.

Also a few months ago, everything I was making was vegan. Now, I’m in a chicken mood. I stopped trying to figure out why these food moods come and go, and I just assume that my body craves what it needs so I just go with it!

The last recipe I posted was a recipe for orange chicken that used the whole entire orange — rind and all — it’s so good: Orange Peel Chicken.

Today’s recipe uses fruit in a whole different way. There’s no fresh fruit in this recipe, but there’s a whole jar of amazing peach preserves in it. I got the idea for this saucy peach chicken recipe when I was reading one of my favorite food blogs: Half Baked Harvest. The sauce for this chicken is a fruity combination of the preserves mixed with the healthy equivalent of a Russian dressing. This is awesome and simple and so amazing, you have to try it!

saucy peach chicken

I just love when a recipe tastes decadent but really is good for you:

Peaches moisten the body; they can alleviate a dry cough, help with dry mouth, and can be good if you are experiencing constipation. In Chinese medicine, we have an herb that is made from the peach kernel (Tao Ren). This herb is great for constipation and some menstrual problems. Isn’t it great when something so delicious is also so healthy?

Chicken is something I push people to buy organic if possible. Organic chicken is a great, healthy protein to give you energy, lessen the pain of some types of arthritis, and boost your system when you are particularly weak — like after surgery or childbirth. People who have some conditions that we consider “excess heat” conditions should limit the amount of chicken they eat. So, if you have an illness that gives you a bright red tongue or severe dryness in your body, check with your doctor first. For example, if you have a lot of burning stomach acid, you should avoid chicken for awhile…

Turmeric is actually a Chinese herb (Jiang Huang). It is great for reducing inflammation throughout the body. If you suffer from aches and pains in your joints, try turmeric. It can help relieve menstrual pain and some other abdominal pains but, if you are pregnant, ask your doctor before you eat too much turmeric.

Chili powder is rich in vitamins A and C and also in essential minerals. Spicy pepper is one of the most nutritious spices available. Consuming small amounts gives you a great source of potassium, iron, zinc, magnesium and selenium. Spicy peppers have also been shown to ease the pain of some types of arthritis and muscle soreness.

Raw apple cider vinegar is one of the most amazing ingredients available today. My husband and I really do take a big spoon of it every day along with our other supplements. It helps you maintain a healthy alkaline level in your body, detoxifies the liver, and is good for your heart. This vinegar helps intestinal function, much the way probiotics do. It also acts as an antacid and can help break down mucous in the body. In this recipe I only used a teaspoon of it, but I really think it would be could with a lot more. The next time I make this, I will keep adding the apple cider vinegar by the 1/2-tsp to see how much I can add and still have it taste so amazing!

saucy peach chicken


Saucy Peach Chicken
Recipe type: chicken, poultry, main course, simple
Cuisine: recipe inspired by: Half Baked Harvest
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
The sauce for this chicken is so delicious, you will want to make it time and time again... and it's healthy!
  1. Preheat your oven to 400°F convection setting or 425°F regular bake setting.
  2. Grease a 9x13 baking dish with coconut oil.
  3. Season the chicken with salt and pepper and arrange it in a single layer in the baking dish.
  4. In a large bowl, whisk together the remaining ingredients and pour them over the chicken.
  5. Bake until the chicken is cooked through and starting to get a few brown patches on the top. (Mine took 35 minutes on the convection setting.)
  6. Enjoy!

saucy peach chicken