I used to work out fairly regularly. In college, especially my Junior and Senior year, I was really good about going to the gym every week day morning. It took me a while to realize that for the sake of my motivation, I need to work out in the morning. If I were to wait until after class or work until I decided to hit the gym, I would probably not go 2/3 of the time. But if I set an alarm, have my workout clothes set out, and have a plan for what I’m going to do, I don’t mind getting up earlier to go to the gym and just get it out of the way! Plus it makes me feel better throughout the day.
Once we were married and moved here, my husband and I were also pretty dedicated to working out together in the mornings. C was actually the one who got me started on working out in the morning, because that is what he did while he was in college. Our first work out regime was p90x… not fun, but effective. Although, as it got closer to the end of the 90 days we started to slack a little… After we completed it, we decided we would run everyday for a month and that would be our next work out plan. Then, unexpectedly, we took 3 months off. We just didn’t really have a good plan and C started school too early for us to go all the way to the gym to workout before class started, which we don’t have to work out together, but when you spend 4 years apart from each other, you kind of want to do everything together that you can! Or at least that’s my excuse for not working out from October to December.
When we got back from our Christmas vacation, we decided that we needed to get back into the swing of things. So C found this Crossfit workout online and we started last week. Let me tell you…. I am sore and big time out of shape! This Crossfit workout kind of sucks, and there is way too much jump roping involved. Yes that’s right, jump roping… I have jumped rope more in the past few days than I did in my entire childhood I think. And working out (in an actual gym setting) with a very active and in shape boy is rough on a girl who didn’t start actually enjoying physical activity until college!
Despite not working out for a good 3 months at the end of last year, we were eating pretty healthy. I was on a low carb kick, and searched Pinterest high and low for different low carb meal ideas to keep us carb conscious. In my searching I found several low carbohydrate recipes that are a healthier version of something else. There is one blog that I use for healthy recipes very often called Skinny Taste. The author has a ton of healthier recipes and all of the nutritional facts for each recipe are noted, which I really appreciate! One recipe I found from her is Crock Pot Italian Turkey Meatballs, and I actually just tried it yesterday for our Italian themed church dinner last night.
These little turkey meatballs were very tasty! Yes, the recipe still has some carbs in it, but I mean… so do most things and there are good carbs and you need a certain amount of those. But anyways, I used a 93% lean ground turkey and made the meatballs very small, and they turned out really well. They passed my husband’s approval with flying colors, and I would make them again just for us. I was trying to find a recipe for last night that would be low in carbs because I knew that there would be tons of pasta and bread. And there was. And it was carb heaven deliciousness!
So, all that to say, I wanted to share the recipe with you, and tell you to check out the Skinny Taste blog, where this recipe was found.
Crock Pot Italian Turkey Meatballs
- 20 oz (1.3 lb) ground turkey breast 93% lean
- 1/4 cup whole wheat seasoned breadcrumbs
- 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
- 1/4 cup parsley, finely chopped
- 1 egg
- 1 large clove garlic, crushed
- 1 tsp salt + fresh pepper
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 4 cloves garlic, smashed
- 28 oz cans crushed tomatoes
- 1 bay leaf
- salt and fresh pepper to taste
- 1/4 cup fresh chopped basil or parsley ( I used parsley)
1. In a large bowl combine all of the meatball ingredients. Using clean hands, mix the ingredients together and form small meatball, all around the same size. [I made really small ones and ended up with about 50 little meatballs! The original recipe calls to make them 1/8 of a cup in size.]
2. (Optional) This next step is optional depending on how much time you want to cook the meatballs in your crockpot. I baked my meatballs at 350 for 15 minutes first, then they went into the crock pot sauce (which will be explained in the next step) for 2-3 hours on low.
3. For the sauce, saute the garlic in a small pan with oil over medium heat, being careful not to burn. (Which of course.. I burned my garlic because the original recipe said make sure not to burn your garlic and I wasn’t watching it, and then my house smelled like burnt garlic for the next few hours, so don’t burn your garlic!) Pour crushed tomatoes into crock pot with the bay leaf. Then add the garlic and oil.
4. Drop the meatballs into the sauce, cover, and set on low for 4-6 hours. [Here again, I only cooked mine on low for 2-3 hours because I baked my meatballs in the oven before hand. I don’t know why I felt like I needed to do that, but the original recipe suggested it as an alternative, so I went ahead I tried it. It worked well, but I think next time I will just cook them the whole time in the crock pot.] When the meatballs are ready, adjust salt and pepper to taste and add in fresh chopped parsley or basil.
Serve with french bread, pasta, ricotta, or just all by themselves. We just took them to the dinner plain, and they were great that way! For a meal, I think they would be good with a side of roasted veggies!