Oh, the meatball. It’s a favorite of kids and grownups alike, but if you think you know this meaty pasta topper, think again. The meatball is being reinvented in kitchens across America, thanks to the creativity of chefs and restaurants like Marabella Meatball Co. in Philadelphia, PA.
The Marabella family, after arriving in the U.S. 100 years ago, set out to introduce Philadelphia and the surrounding areas to the goodness of their Italian family recipes. These recipes, passed down from generation to generation, included the simply delicious and crowd-pleasing beef meatball still on the Marabella Meatball Co. menu. With tradition as a starting point (and still an integral part of the menu), the Marabella family then began creating new recipes to tempt taste buds, such as the Veggie Meatball recipe featured on The Food Network. Both the old world family favorites and the reinvented dishes have helped to earn this Philadelphia restaurant loyal guests and plenty of publicity, everything from Good Day Philadelphia to The Food Network’s Food Revolution. Here are just a few of the Healthy Dining choices you’ll want to try next time you’re in the area:
Chicken Ricotta Nonni Sandwich (490 calories, 12 g fat)
This sandwich starts with a soft nonni roll and is then piled high with chicken meatballs, spinach, and ricotta cheese. This sandwich is a tasty combo of lean protein, iron-rich veggie and bone-building dairy for one satisfying choice.
Bowl: Veggie Meatballs with Mushroom Sauce (310 calories, 12 g fat)
Sure, you can make them at home using the recipe above, but why deal with the mess when you can order them at the restaurant. The veggie meatballs include chickpeas, broccoli, cauliflower, pine nuts and more for a total 1½ cups of veggies. This bowl includes three meatballs served locatelli. Skip the crostini served on the side to make it a Healthy Dining choice.
Wheat Penne Chicken Pasta (580 calories, 20 g fat, 550 mg sodium)
Whole grains are not only a MyPlate recommendation… they are also a great way to get added fiber and B vitamins in your diet, which can be a help in managing weight. This wheat penne pasta is topped with chicken meatballs, a drizzle of olive oil, and garlic.
Veggie Sundried Nonni Sandwich (520 calories, 15 g fat)
Veggie balls, mozzarella, and tangy sun-dried tomatoes make this a hard-to-resist choice both for flavor and all those good veggies used to make the veggie balls.
I don’t know about you, but my stomach is growling!