Asian Meatball Steamed Subs

These meatball subs are the perfect game day or party food. They are easy to make and packed with great flavor. The recipe is a healthier alternative to a burger or taco, and offers a different flavor profile as the Asian flavors are highlighted.

Using meatballs instead of a full hamburger patty is a great way to maintain portion control when it comes to eating red meat. Making a coleslaw that is full of vegetables high in antioxidants and vitamins is also a perfect healthy alternative to heavier, cream sauces.

The chewy textures from the Chinese steamed buns pair well with the strong Asian flavors coming from the sauce of the meatballs and coleslaw. This recipe is sure to excite guests to give their taste buds a treat.

Photo Credit: A Healthier Michigan

football meatballs

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup rice vinegar
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 3 Tbsp. light brown sugar, divided
  • 3/4 tsp. crushed red pepper
  • 3 garlic cloves, grated and divided
  • 1 cup broccoli slaw (shredded broccoli and carrots and any other desired vegetables)
  • 8 oz. 90% lean ground sirloin
  • 1/4 cup whole-wheat panko
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 2 Tbsp. reduced-sodium soy sauce, divided
  • Cooking spray
  • 2 tsp. toasted sesame oil
  • 8 frozen folded Chinese steamed buns
  • 8 small red leaf lettuce leaves

Asian Meatball Steamed Subs

Instructions
1. Bring vinegar, 1/3 cup water, 1 tablespoon brown sugar, pepper, and 2 garlic cloves to a boil in a saucepan over medium-high. Remove from heat; add broccoli slaw. Cool to room temperature, stirring occasionally, about 30 minutes. Drain.
2. Meanwhile, stir together sirloin, panko, egg, 1 1/2 teaspoons soy sauce, 1 1/2 teaspoons brown sugar, and remaining grated garlic clove in a bowl until well blended. Shape mixture into 16 meatballs in the shape of footballs, about 1 tablespoon each.
3. Heat a large skillet over medium. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add meat footballs to pan; cook, stirring occasionally, until browned and cooked through, 5 to 7 minutes. Move meatballs to side of skillet. Add oil, remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons brown sugar, and remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce to center of skillet; cook until sugar dissolves and sauce is glazy, about 1 minute. Stir to coat meatballs.
4. Layer 3 well-moistened paper towels on a microwave-safe plate. Place frozen buns on plate; cover with 3 more well-moistened paper towels. Microwave at high until warmed, about 1 minute and 30 seconds, checking for doneness every 10 seconds after heating for 1 minute.
5. Divide slaw, lettuce leaves, and meatballs evenly among 8 buns. Enjoy!

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