Beef Meatballs with Carrot and Apple

Babies and toddlers will especially love these meatballs as my secret ingredient of grated apple adds a touch of sweetness and oodles of child appeal. Remember that iron is the commonest nutritional deficiency in children and is vital for their physical and mental development. Red meat is one of the richest and most easily absorbed sources of iron.

This is an exclusive recipe from Annabel’s 30th Anniversary Edition of her Global Bestselling Cookbook: New Complete Baby & Toddler Meal Planner. BUY NOW.

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1 small onion, chopped
½ apple, peeled, cored and grated
75 g/3 oz carrot, peeled and grated
200 g/7 oz mince beef
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
25 g/1 oz panko breadcrumbs
20 g/¾ oz grated Parmesan cheese
1 egg, beaten
sunflower or vegetable oil, for frying


  1. Put the onion, apple and carrot into a food processor. Whizz until finely chopped.
  2. Add the beef, garlic, thyme, breadcrumbs, Parmesan and egg. Whizz until combined. Shape into 25 little balls.
  3. Heat a little oil in a frying pan. Add the balls and fry for about 10 minutes until lightly golden and cooked through.
  4. Alternatively, preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas 4. Arrange the meatballs on an oiled baking sheet and bake in the oven for 15 minutes, turning halfway through cooking.

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