Y’all, I LOVE Greek food.
Ever since I had the privilege of traveling to the Greek isles and eating my way from island to island, I have developed an obsession with those rich, flavorful dishes. From the healthier options like grilled gyro and souvlaki to gooey moussaka and decadent baklava (not Paleo and I don’t give a toot), I love it all. The oregano, the mint, the lemon, the honey, the olives…
Alas, friends, a trip to Mykonos or Santorini is not in my near future. Heck, I don’t even have a Zoe’s kitchen or Greek diner in my vicinity. I’d have to huff it 50 miles south or north to get my hands on some spanakopita.
Sure, my ethnic food options vastly extend to include Panda Express, Taco Bell, and more Tex-Mex restaurants per capita than churches, which says a lot when you live in smaller town Texas.
Sure, I can appreciate and occasionally enjoy the margaritas and fajitas or pulled pork and sausage of our local eateries, but I do miss exploring other cultures through their cuisine. But alas, those culinary travels are rather limited where I live.
No Thai food. No Indian food. No sushi, not even in the grocery stores!
Thank goodness I know my way around the kitchen and am not afraid to experiment.
And double thank goodness my local Wal-Mart has started carrying ground lamb.
So today, with a little imagination (and Wal-Mart’s ground lamb), we’re traveling to the shimmering Mediterranean for some paleo-friendly Greek meatballs with creamy, dreamy, and also paleo-friendly tzatziki sauce.
No passport required.
Before we get to our main course, I present y’all with a little appetizer, a visual snack if you will….I’m going to just leave these here for y’all to sample…
Behold, pictures straight from my high school scrapbook from my cruise to the Greek isles.You're welcome....
Y'all, I absolutely loved my trip there, and I’d go back in a heartbeat.
Especially for the food.
Thankfully, I was in a place in my culinary maturity that I appreciated the unique cuisine of Greece, braving mysterious platters and exploring a world of eggplant and lentils and really really really thick yogurt (the OG Greek yogurt, before it was cool and trendy here in the US).
What I’d do for some real-deal Greek food.
The problems, though, include 1- I have an infant 2- I don’t really want to pay a few thousand bucks for some Greek food 3- I don’t have time for many of the more complicated dishes.
I need something that will be ready in 30 minutes, easy to prep, easy to cleanup, and, of course, healthy.
And these meatballs with tzatziki sauce fit that description perfectly!
First up are the meatballs.
Similar to a meatloaf, you just toss all the ingredients into a bowl, take off your bling to mix with your hands, and roll them out into inch-ish balls.
Bake them in a lined (easy clean-up) and rimmed (keep the juices from splashing all over your oevn) sheet pan for 25 minutes.
In the meantime, you could easily whip together your tzatkiki sauce. If you’re new to Greek food or have never tried the stuff, it’s a creamy, herby sauce traditionally comprised of yogurt, sour cream, herbs, and cucumber.
To make it paleo-friendly, I swapped the yogurt for avocado and sour cream for a little coconut milk and lemon juice. Still plenty zesty and flavorful- a perfect topping or dip for these meatballs. And in order to make it, you throw everybody into your blender and whiz them together for a few seconds.
Golly, you’d still have time to enjoy a nice glass of wine before the meatballs are even ready.
If you want, serve these bad boys on top of a bed of cauliflower rice, white rice, or, as I preferred, zoodles (zucchini noodles).
They would also be perfect tucked into a lunchbox in a few more weeks…not that we’re even going there yet.
While I wish we could all enjoy a relaxing cruise to the Greek isles like I took back ini the day, at least we can whip up a batch of these meatballs and sauce, turn on My Big Fat Greek Wedding (can we just agree that the sequel never happened?!), and enjoy life.
Healthy Happy Texan
I'm a Foodie, Fitness Instructor, and Follower of Christ. Add a passion for teaching others, dark chocolate, bacon, and dogs -- and that's me in a box.
Come on, let's live a little!