These spicy Korean pork meatballs are the simplest way to jazz up your weeknight dinner. Made in 35 minutes with 9 ingredients – paleo and gluten free!
Ohhhhhh baby. I’ve got a funny story for you today. I made these meatballs last Saturday between lunch and dinner. Pat and I had already eaten lunch and had plans to meet friends for dinner…
So I made these meatballs, obviously tried them (because HUBBA HUBBA) and told Pat how delicious they were. After eating two, I told him he had to stop so that we could have them for another meal. I took some of the leftovers to lunch last Monday… and I posted them on my Instastories… BIG MISTAKE. Pat was devastated – to put it lightly. How on Earth could I have betrayed him?! The look on his face was utter disappointment.
Little did he know, there was a container full on meatballs in the fridge with his name on it. He should know by now that I would never do that to him! #wifeoftheyear
But let’s be furreal for a sec. If, and that’s a BIG if. If I we’re to ever eat the entire recipe and not tell Pat, that recipe would be these meatballs. Ohhhh my goodness, they will have you dancing!
The key to these spicy Korean pork meatballs is gochujang.
Gochujang is a Korean red chili paste. The first time I used gochujang was to make A Clean Bake’s Korean Turkey Burgers, which btw are phenomenal and are on my menu this week. If you haven’t tried them yet, go out and buy some gochujang, make her burgers and then make these meatballs.
And for those who have been here a while, you already know this; but I am all about quick, healthy, satisfying, and flavorful meals!
Let’s break it down:
- Gluten free – no breadcrumbs here, only almond flour
- Paleo – grain free, diary free, no added sugar
- Fast – 35 minutes from start to finish
- Healthy – these act as a great source of protein and pair with cauliflower rice for a balanced meal
- SO. MUCH. FLAVOR. Personally I love pork as the base for my meatballs, and with the addition of the spicy gochujang and the cool green onions. Totally killer.
For me, I always want meatballs with a good crust on them. A nice browning before being popped in the oven. As always, I use my cast iron skillet to brown the meatballs… and for pretty much everything else. I have the 12 inch, which is large, but browned these in two batches because I didn’t want to overcrowd the pan!
What’s your favorite way to use gochujang? Tell me in the comments below!
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Spicy Korean Pork Meatballs
- Prep Time: 10 mins
- Cook Time: 25 mins
- Total Time: 35 mins
- Yield: 16 meatballs 1x
- 1 pound ground pork
- 1 egg
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 green onions, thinly sliced
- 2 Tablespoons Gochujang
- 1/2 teaspoon ginger
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup almond flour
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil, for frying
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- In large bowl, combine all meatball ingredients. Gently mix until until everything is evenly distributed.
- Form the mixture into meatballs just larger than a golf ball.
- Heat olive oil oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Brown the meatballs on all sides, making sure not to overcrowd the pan.
- Once brown, transfer meatballs to rimmed baking sheet and place in the oven. Bake 15 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 160° F.
- Sprinkle with extra green onions and serve with cauliflower rice.
Recipe adapted from Food52.
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ok, so how bout next time you’re here we make these & not share with pat or chris.
ok, glad we’re on the same page. xx
that sound like a PERFECT plan!
These look DELISH!!!
Thanks 🙂 and thank you for sharing!
oh yum! these look so good! I haven’t cooked with gochujang (so had to scroll up three times for spelling!) I totally wouldn’t share with my husband either!
hahah I cannot tell you the amount of times I googled it to check the spelling! maybe we should make them together and not share with our husbands 😉
Yum!!! Love me some meatballs…my hubbs would be sad too because they’re also his fave. I’ve never her of gochujang , I’ll have to check it out 🙂
Oh if you like spice, you will love gochujang!
These look delicious! I’ve recently transitioned to paleo, and am looking for new recipes to try. Can’t wait to give these a try!
These look fantastic and so easy, which I love! I am always on the look out for more simple paleo recipes. Thanks!
Thanks Alexa – I am ALL about simple and tasty paleo recipes!
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I tried it last night. Taste was great. My meatballs didn’t stay round but other than presentation, good recipe. My family doesn’t tend to like Paleo recipes but they want me to make this again.
Hi Jilly! I’m so glad you and your family liked the meatballs! And my meatballs never stay round when I am pan frying them… only when I bake them. Mine ususally turn out square-ish which you can see in the photos!
Do you have a specific brand of gochujang paste you use, or a particular store? The one I always use, I just realized, contains wheat, corn syrup, wheat flour and soybean powder.
Hi Sara! This is the kind that I buy – http://amzn.to/2CDtUCl !!
Have you found a gochujang that is Whole30 compliant?! All of the ones Ives seen have sugar or syrup in them.
Hi Sara! I was convinced the kind that I usually buy didn’t have cane sugar in it and I was wrong – yikes! I’ll keep my eyes out and see if I can find one that is Whole30 approved and let you know!
This looks like a good recipe to make your own – it won’t necessarily be the exact same, but it should mimic the flavors well! http://eatdrinkpaleo.com.au/paleo-koren-chilli-chicken-recipe/
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You might want to take the Whole30 off this recipe as the gochujang is not compliant as it has rice, rice syrup, rice wine & cane sugar in it. That would mean a restart for someone doing Whole30.
Thank you for letting me know Sandra – I appreciate it!
Thanks for sharing this recipe! I made it last night and we really enjoyed! I doubled and used half-beef, half-pork and I baked at 400 for about 10 minutes.
Jean Choi’s great book, Korean Paleo, has a recipe for homemade gochujang (which is what I used). It’s been a while since I’ve looked at Whole 30, but its definitely a truly Paleo product.
I love the half-and-half and that you baked them. I’ll check out the book – thanks for the recommendation!