Calorie Counters - Ouch...Meatballs = Major Calorie Disaster

02-21-2010, 02:48 PM
I'm italian. So yesterday, because it's Saturday and I'm off work, I decided to make a big pot of meatballs to have for the week. I thoroughly enjoy the three hours it takes to make meatballs by scratch. Grating the parmesan, toasting the day old bread, mincing the parsley - VERY relaxing. And besides, I figure meatballs with no pasta makes a decent meal for a diet, if I eat well all day...

Um, not even close. I tallied up the calories today for the portions of 4 small meatballs is 584 calories! The good news is, it's my TOM and the iron and fat are really helping cramps - so I'm justifying it for today :-p

Has anyone else had a recipe that they suddenly realized was terrible after beginning to count calories?

02-21-2010, 03:15 PM
Maybe in the future you could switch to ground turkey instead of the beef for your meatballs? I really love ground turkey in my pasta sauces.

02-21-2010, 03:47 PM
I might try that. The ground beef totaled up to almost 1300 calories alone, according to the website I used (I used 1.5 pounds for 25 meatballs)

I could also cut the olive oil. Between the fresh pasta sauce and sautéing the meatballs, I estimate that I used 1/2 a cup, LOL. I don't see myself cutting the parmesan (Mmmmmm!) or the bread, as I only really use one breadstick worth for 6 meals.

But most likely, I'll just start making meatballs again when I'm in maintenance mode. At that point, the occasional splurge won't be such a big deal. :D

02-21-2010, 08:08 PM
I would definitely figure out a way to include some meatballs in my day! YUMM!!!

02-21-2010, 08:33 PM
Not sure how far away from your recipe you want to get, but my mom used to substitute half the ground beef in recipes with mashed beans (black beans or whatever).

BTW, your meatballs sound wonderful!

02-22-2010, 11:05 AM
I eat a hamburger now and then and my 1/3 lb. Bubba Burger frozen patty, when cooked, isn't nearly that many calories. I guess it's the added cheese and bread crumbs?

I feel your pain, though. It sucks when you've made a whole week's worth of something that you realize you can't have but maybe for a treat.

It occurs to me that you could find leaner beef and use ground turkey sausage instead of veal/pork (if you use that), and compensate for the lack of fat by soaking bread in skim milk and working that in, instead of using crumbs.

02-22-2010, 08:54 PM
These are some brilliant ideas! I'll definitely play around with some of them the next time I get in the mood to cook up some meatballs...I'm sure with a little experimentation, I can find a way to make the recipe lighter and still delicious :-)

584 is a little much to stomach, considering there's not a ton of good nutritional value in meatballs. But they sure are delicious! I'm attempting to freeze half so that I'm not stuck with a ton of meatballs to eat at that calorie count. I'm hoping they stay decent; I've never frozen them before. :-)

02-23-2010, 12:16 AM
are you sure you did the math right? If you are saying the meat was 1300 calories for 25 meatballs, that's only about 210 calories worth of meat in 4 meatballs. I'm trying to imagine what else you included that was another 376 calories??

02-23-2010, 10:30 AM
Try 1/2 ground beed, 1/2 ground turkey?

In my family we make them with ground veal,beef and pork mixed, with romano and ricotta. I just enjoy them from time to time, but I'll give them a count up!

02-23-2010, 02:40 PM
I'm attempting to freeze half so that I'm not stuck with a ton of meatballs to eat at that calorie count. I'm hoping they stay decent; I've never frozen them before. :-)

Do they have any sauce on them? I always freeze meatballs. This is what I do:

-Cook the meatballs on a cookie sheet
-Let them cool
-Put a piece of parchment paper on a cookie sheet and put the meatballs on
-Place the whole pan, uncovered, in the freezer (Flash freeze)
-Leave for about 12 hours
-Take them out of the freezer and toss in a ziplock bag

I flash freeze a lot of stuff, even my muffins, because then when they go in the bag, they don't all stick together. :)