3

votes

Binding meatballs without eggs?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created January 31, 2012 at 2:49 PM

Hi hackers,

I'm following the autoimmune protocol and need a substitute for binding meatballs. Already tried it without eggs and my delicious meat chunks fell apart.

Is there anything I can use to make them more stable (without eggs, nuts, coconut, dairy and of course super-glue) ?

If anyone even has an inspiring idea for a meatball filling (autoimmune compliant) this would make me the happiest paleo on earth. ;)

34a31e6e59ee73ac7ddfd96c3e653919

(232)

on October 26, 2013
at 02:31 AM

salting the meat for that long would make it dry out though

Ebcbbdcb8b727e69e06eaa102d49a84c

(1804)

on February 03, 2012
at 09:34 PM

This does work.

Ebcbbdcb8b727e69e06eaa102d49a84c

(1804)

on February 03, 2012
at 09:33 PM

Yes, I bake mine too without eggs. Works every time with ground turkey.

Ce7e28769d92d5de5533e775b1de966e

on February 01, 2012
at 02:37 PM

That's awesome! I like that you're able to actually get double nutrition in there as well. Carb and protein, if you're using parsley then some leafy green, so one neat little package :)

E2b72f1912f777917d8ee6b7fba43c26

(2384)

on February 01, 2012
at 09:01 AM

Very interesting idea!

E2b72f1912f777917d8ee6b7fba43c26

(2384)

on February 01, 2012
at 07:56 AM

I'll try that :)

F5a0ddffcf9ef5beca864050f090a790

(15515)

on February 01, 2012
at 07:12 AM

I don't use the oil so I need something to make sure they do not burn. Any oil/lard/fat would also work. I just do not use them for meatballs.

1096aa84d006fe967128ffbd37e8070e

(1002)

on February 01, 2012
at 03:31 AM

I just tried to bind my salmon cakes with potatoes. The mashed potatoes worked great...this time I tried shredded parboiled potatoes, and it's not as good. Maybe a ricer would be the magic I need. Thanks...

F0e558010a2ecb31fa37b7c491596b8e

(3850)

on January 31, 2012
at 08:20 PM

I've never found them to burn if you just bake them dry in an oiled pan. And the brown stuff left on the bottom of the baking pan is SO GOOD.

F0e558010a2ecb31fa37b7c491596b8e

(3850)

on January 31, 2012
at 08:18 PM

Ground up pork rinds make fantastic meatballs. Highly recommend.

363d0a0277a8b61ada3a24ab3ad85d5a

(4642)

on January 31, 2012
at 06:58 PM

I make pretty decent sized meatballs, just under the size of a chicken egg, and roll them into a slightly oval shape, and fry on one side for 5-10 minutes before flipping, so maybe slowing down the turning could help!

D687712302e0103ea52615eefc94d102

(396)

on January 31, 2012
at 06:55 PM

I am eating meatloaf *as we speak* that I bound with pork rinds. Mmm... pork rinds.

E2b72f1912f777917d8ee6b7fba43c26

(2384)

on January 31, 2012
at 06:37 PM

I've just thrown them into the pan and turned them every minute but after the second touch they crumbled. Maybe I could steam them before frying?

363d0a0277a8b61ada3a24ab3ad85d5a

(4642)

on January 31, 2012
at 06:11 PM

How do you cook them? Simmer, bake, fry? I fry before allowing to simmering (if adding to a sauce), and I think it helps seal the meat up.

246ebf68e35743f62e5e187891b9cba0

(21430)

on January 31, 2012
at 05:52 PM

I have made eggless meatballs/meatloaves with fatty ground beef (market 80%) and the grassfed beef that I get (super lean, about 90% or even leaner) and every time, the lean beef crumbles, the fattier beef stays put. I've also baked meatballs in muffin tins to keep them together.

E2b72f1912f777917d8ee6b7fba43c26

(2384)

on January 31, 2012
at 03:05 PM

I know it's a tough one :)

  • E2b72f1912f777917d8ee6b7fba43c26

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19 Answers

6
072fd69647b0e765bb4b11532569f16d

(3717)

on January 31, 2012
at 05:05 PM

I have not personally tried it, but I would think a bit of broth and ground up pork rinds could work. Using fattier meat or adding bacon fat and finely chopped vegetables would probably also help.

F0e558010a2ecb31fa37b7c491596b8e

(3850)

on January 31, 2012
at 08:18 PM

Ground up pork rinds make fantastic meatballs. Highly recommend.

D687712302e0103ea52615eefc94d102

(396)

on January 31, 2012
at 06:55 PM

I am eating meatloaf *as we speak* that I bound with pork rinds. Mmm... pork rinds.

246ebf68e35743f62e5e187891b9cba0

(21430)

on January 31, 2012
at 05:52 PM

I have made eggless meatballs/meatloaves with fatty ground beef (market 80%) and the grassfed beef that I get (super lean, about 90% or even leaner) and every time, the lean beef crumbles, the fattier beef stays put. I've also baked meatballs in muffin tins to keep them together.

4
F5a0ddffcf9ef5beca864050f090a790

(15515)

on January 31, 2012
at 06:16 PM

I have just made meatballs, no eggs, did not fell apart. My trick?

I bake them, not fry them. Ground turkey breast Ground onion, pressed garlic grated carrot (salt,spices,pepper, grated red pepper optional)

Mix everything, shape into balls, add sauce so it won't burn (I add water), cover and bake for 45 minutes.

Bon appetite!

Ebcbbdcb8b727e69e06eaa102d49a84c

(1804)

on February 03, 2012
at 09:33 PM

Yes, I bake mine too without eggs. Works every time with ground turkey.

F0e558010a2ecb31fa37b7c491596b8e

(3850)

on January 31, 2012
at 08:20 PM

I've never found them to burn if you just bake them dry in an oiled pan. And the brown stuff left on the bottom of the baking pan is SO GOOD.

F5a0ddffcf9ef5beca864050f090a790

(15515)

on February 01, 2012
at 07:12 AM

I don't use the oil so I need something to make sure they do not burn. Any oil/lard/fat would also work. I just do not use them for meatballs.

3
77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on January 31, 2012
at 07:11 PM

Meatballs and burgers are so easy to make. Use fatty meat and you wont need to add anything to it to bind it. Don't cook it at all before forming into balls or burgers.

3
Ce7e28769d92d5de5533e775b1de966e

on January 31, 2012
at 05:44 PM

Hmm.. I don't use any binders anymore and can easily roll into shape with my hands, after seasoning and such, bake in the oven or drop into a liquid. I've done all proteins and they've all held up.

How big are you making them? Mine are usually not any larger than the size of a fifty cent piece. For a fat ratio maybe.. 85/15? Sometimes just salt/pepper, others I'll add aromatics and such.

Ok.. so... I wonder if you used gelatin if that would work, you know - the Great Lakes brand? I actually think that would be aces. Also off the top of my head to try arrowroot, tapioca or potato starch. GF flours. Maybe even smashed tuber as its on the dryer side. Smashed fine or run through a ricer, combined with the meat really well, then roll. My head is kind of thinking along the lines of gnocchi and how potato is utilized in there. Yes it has the eggs and flour but even without they hold up well. Sweet potato, too, as long as it's not a heavy moist one.

Good luck!

1096aa84d006fe967128ffbd37e8070e

(1002)

on February 01, 2012
at 03:31 AM

I just tried to bind my salmon cakes with potatoes. The mashed potatoes worked great...this time I tried shredded parboiled potatoes, and it's not as good. Maybe a ricer would be the magic I need. Thanks...

Ce7e28769d92d5de5533e775b1de966e

on February 01, 2012
at 02:37 PM

That's awesome! I like that you're able to actually get double nutrition in there as well. Carb and protein, if you're using parsley then some leafy green, so one neat little package :)

3
81df028433e6bd160fe6130a8b2a4cb2

on January 31, 2012
at 03:16 PM

Hi Thomy,

Heston Blumenthal (Michelin starred UK chef) has an excellent principle for binding burgers together without the use of eggs, so I don't see why the same method couldn't be used for meatballs!

http://www.channel4.com/4food/recipes/chefs/heston-blumenthal/beef-burgers-recipe

Essentially it just involves salting the beef for a good four hours before squidging 'em together, the salt acts like a tenderizing agent so that when the beef is moulded it adheres together and yet is still tender after cooking). I've tried it myself with burgers but have yet to downsize to balls.

Hope this helps! Prudence.

34a31e6e59ee73ac7ddfd96c3e653919

(232)

on October 26, 2013
at 02:31 AM

salting the meat for that long would make it dry out though

2
F92e4ca55291c3f3096a3d4d3d854986

(11698)

on January 31, 2012
at 06:51 PM

I just bind my hamburger or lamb patties with fat - olive oil or bacon fat. Maybe I'm not making them right, but it seems to work fine.

2
A7768b6c6be7f5d6acc76e5efa66464c

on January 31, 2012
at 06:16 PM

Maybe you can benefit from a one of my mishaps. I was making a recipe that called for corn starch as part of the marinade for some pork, before frying. I substituted tapioca starch in the same quantity--big mistake. When I popped the meat into the hot pan, the tapioca formed an incredibly sticky, stretchy, gluey mess. It was all I could do to salvage the dish.

So I'm thinking that a little tapioca starch will combine with the moisture, and under heat, form that sticky gel. Just enough might bind--too much might make really gluey, rubbery meatballs. Might be worth a shot with a small part of the batch. Good luck!

2
44348571d9bc70c02ac2975cc500f154

(5853)

on January 31, 2012
at 03:53 PM

Salt and grind like blumenthal does, add some chopped spinach to the mix perhaps? You will need a meat grinder, old hand crank will do just fine.

1
4e184df9c1ed38f61febc5d6cf031921

(5005)

on February 01, 2012
at 08:40 AM

I put about 3 or 4 oz liver into the food processor until a paste, then mix that in with the minced (ground) meat thoroughly. It seems to work fine - and adds all of those lovely nutrients!

E2b72f1912f777917d8ee6b7fba43c26

(2384)

on February 01, 2012
at 09:01 AM

Very interesting idea!

1
78972387772c994caa78513a83978437

on February 01, 2012
at 03:26 AM

Fat and tomato paste.

1
Cf4576cbcc44fc7f2294135609bce9e5

on February 01, 2012
at 12:08 AM

if you grind any meat fine enough it will stick together without any thing. as proof i have ground lean chicken meat. maby you could use meat paste to glue your course meat together. brilliant right.

1
2fd93e91bb14e641a2bac9c6033e84e2

(1614)

on January 31, 2012
at 11:41 PM

Can you eat flaxseed? (It's paleo, but I'm not sure if you've got restrictions on it specifically.) If you can, try the "whisk ground flax in cold water egg substitute" thing, and let it sit 5-10 minutes before adding it to your ground meat.

E2b72f1912f777917d8ee6b7fba43c26

(2384)

on February 01, 2012
at 07:56 AM

I'll try that :)

1
C83820cb34dbc91951afb462670e1533

on January 31, 2012
at 07:23 PM

Let them set in the fridge perhaps?

Ebcbbdcb8b727e69e06eaa102d49a84c

(1804)

on February 03, 2012
at 09:34 PM

This does work.

1
7d01d86c539003eed77cf901bf037412

(1076)

on January 31, 2012
at 06:28 PM

If the meat is reasonably well-mixed, and has some salt added, it should bind fine. In fact with finer ground meat, over-mixing can end up with surprisingly chewy results.

My guess is that you are not kneading the mixture or not adding salt.

0
34a31e6e59ee73ac7ddfd96c3e653919

on October 26, 2013
at 02:33 AM

butter works pretty well

0
32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on October 25, 2013
at 11:59 PM

What gives Spam is spammy texture? Potato starch. I've started making meatloaves and meatballs with it and really like the results.

0
C4deaa6bb01626b4569e8992890381ab

on October 25, 2013
at 11:12 PM

I find lamb minced lamb good if you make the balls small enough & as stated in previous comments...bake them. I have also had success frying them at high heat.

0
55f9eb58b8386cae7633a3e84184d2ea

on October 25, 2013
at 11:07 PM

I grind up chia seeds with my spices and use that, with no breadcrumbs and a touch of fat

0
F995bda106b4316177b18b8edeacaace

on May 13, 2013
at 03:17 PM

I was in a pinch and found ricotta in my fridge! Worked just as well as egg! They turned out awesome! Used about a quarter cup to a pound of meat with all the traditional spices of course! Hope this helps!

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