Get ready for the most flavorful grain bowl ever! Mediterranean Quinoa Bowls are layers of bursting deliciousness with fluffy quinoa grains, crunchy cucumbers and tomatoes, tangy feta cheese, and fresh-baked, super moist, and tender ground lamb meatballs.
There's about to be a flavor party and you are at the top of the guest list. We're talking about a beautiful blend of Mediterranean flavors in a bowl that's great for lunch or dinner.
Here's what I'm loving about these bowls:
- easy to make, lean, ground lamb meatballs
- crunchy fresh veggies
- hearty, healthy grains
- cheesy feta
- herb-seasoned and pan-toasted pita chips
- rich and nutty tahini drizzle
If you love a busy salad or grain bowls with a bunch of flavors and textures and good things going on, these are going to be right up your alley.
Tips for making these quinoa bowls!
Mediterranean quinoa bowls with lamb meatballs is a bit of a mouthful to say, but its ok. You won't be able to talk anyways because you're just going to keep wanting bites of this delectable combination of flavors and textures and you'll mouth with already be full.
To start the party off, you'll need to make your meatballs. Which are superbly simple.
- Mix your breadcrumbs & milk
- Combine the lamb and spices
- Mix it all together
- Gently form into 2 to 3 tablespoons size balls and bake!
- TIP: the less you handle the meatball mixture the more tender the texture!
Mix the breadcrumbs and milk in a bowl and let it sit for a minute or two. In a medium bowl or in the bowl of a standing mixer, combine the ground lamb and the remaining meatball ingredients. Add in your breadcrumb milk mixture and mix on low speed or by hand for about 1 minute until all the ingredients are evenly combined.
I love using the stand mixer for this. It's so easy and I don't have raw meat squishing between my fingers and under my nails. If you don't have a stand mixer, the traditional method is A-OK.
What is the secret to tender meatballs?
There are two parts that are key to getting super tender, juicy meatballs with lean meat .
The first is the milk and breadcrumb mixture. It adds so much moisture to the mix. I promise once you try it, you'll never leave it out again.
The second is handling the meat as little as possible when forming the meatballs. Lightly form about 2 to 3 tablespoons into a ball.
Tip: My favorite way to form the meatballs is using a medium cookie scoop and then just barely pinching it into a ball. Sometimes I just bake them flat on one side. They're a little more rustic looking but they are SO good!
Line up your meatballs on a sheet tray and while they bake assemble the rest of your bowls!
Should the quinoa be hot or cold?
Totally up to you! I like mine warm/hot so I cook it while the meatballs are in the oven. But if you have leftover quinoa or rice, use that!
For the remaining ingredients, you can make tzatziki at home or use store-bought, whatever you have the time for! I love homemade tzatziki but I also love just opening the package and plopping it on.
One thing I would not sleep on is the homemade pita strips! A little extra effort but they are addictingly good! That salty, crispy, heavily seasoned crunch is just the perfect carb-y addition to these bowls.
These lamb meatball quinoa bowls are really great for a nice filling lunch or swap them in to switch things up at dinner. You can't go wrong!
If you made this recipe I'd love you to review it below with a star rating! Tell me your favorite part in the comments!
Mediterranean Quinoa Bowls with Lamb Meatballs
Mediterranean Quinoa Bowls
- 2 cups mixed greens or baby spinach
- lamb meatballs (about 4 per bowl)
- 2 cups cooked quinoa
- 1 cup feta crumbles
- ½ european cucumber (chopped)
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes (halved)
- 1⅓ cup tzatziki
- 2 tablespoons tahini
- ½ cup Greek dressing (about 2 tablespoons per bowl)
- 8 wedges pita chips
- 1 pound ground lamb
- 1 clove garlic (minced)
- ½ cup plain breadcrumbs
- ½ cup milk
- ¼ cup onion flakes
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- ½ teaspoon ground oregano
- ¼ teaspoon thyme
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
Toasted Pita Chips
- 2 whole wheat pitas
- 1 tablespoon Trader Joes za'tar seasoning (see notes)
- 1 pinch salt
- Prep. Preheat the oven to 350°F and line a sheet pan with parchment paper. In a medium bowl combine the breadcrumbs and milk, set aside.
- Mix. In a large bowl, combine the ground lamb, garlic, onion flakes, oregano, coriander, thyme, salt, pepper, and the soaked breadcrumb mixture. Mix with your hands until the ingredients are evenly distributed, or combine the ingredients in the bowl of a standing mixer and mix on the lowest speed with the paddle attachment for about 45 to 60 seconds.
- Make the meatballs. To get the most tender meatballs, handle the meat as little as possible. Scoop about 2 tablespoons of the meatballs mixture with your hands, a tablespoon, or a medium cookie scoop and gently pinch into a rough ball shape. Bake on the parchment-lined sheet pan at 350°F for 25 minutes.
- Make the quinoa bowls. While the meatballs bake, prep the quinoa bowls. Layer the greens, quinoa, cucumbers, tomatoes, and feta into four bowls. Drizzle with dressing. Top the quinoa bowls with tzatziki, cooked meatballs, and a light drizzle of tahini. Optional: sprinkle lightly with fresh chopped mint.
- Make the pita chips. Heat a cast-iron pan over medium to medium-high heat. Generously drizzle pitas with olive oil and toast until golden brown on both sides. Sprinkle with spices and flaked sea salt. Cut in quarters and serve alongside your Mediterranean quinoa bowls.
- You can mince ¼ of a small yellow onion to substitute for onion flakes.
- The trader joes za'tar season can easily be substituted. Just take a pinch of each of the seasonings used in the lamb meatballs (oregano, ground coriander, thyme, and pepper).
- Quinoa can be served cold or hot. If meal prepping these bowls, keep the lamb meatballs separate and heat before serving.