These Vietnamese Meatballs (Xiu Mai) are a Whole30, Paleo and Keto take on the traditional recipe. These Vietnamese meatballs are so versatile and a great way to change up how you eat meatballs!
This post is in partnership with Bare Bones.
I’m so grateful I grew up in the town that I did because I was exposed to so many different cultures. I have friends from all walks of life and it truly helped shape the person I am today.
Growing up in Lowell, MA meant meant meeting people from different parts of Southeast Asia. I had a couple of friends who immigrated from Vietnam, and my goodness was I spoiled when it came to eating dishes from their culture.
I’m sure almost everyone is familiar with Pho and Banh Mi sandwiches, but there are so many other Vietnamese dishes that don’t get the recognition they deserve!
These Vietnamese Meatballs (Xiu Mai) were a childhood favorite. Obviously, this isn’t the real deal, but it’s pretty damn close! They can be eaten so many different ways.
Vietnamese Meatballs or xiu mai are tender meatballs braised in a tomato sauce until perfectly cook through. The meatballs offer a variety of textures courtesy of the juicy pork and crunchy jicama.
Traditionally it’s served with a baguette to soak up all the sauce or you can turn it into a meatball sub. I personally love it with rice or cauliflower rice.
The tomato sauce has a unique flavor since it’s seasoned with fish sauce. When paired with Bare Bones 100% Grass-Fed Beef Bone Broth, you are in for a flavor packed treat! The bone broth adds a richness to the sauce and helps bring together the flavor of the dish.
P.S. it’s even better the next day! Trust me.
Vietnamese Meatballs (Xiu Mai)
- 1 cup finely diced jicama
- 3 green onions
- 1 lb ground pork
- 1 garlic clove finely minced or grated
- 1 tbsp fish sauce
- 1 tbsp tapioca starch
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- ½ tsp ground black pepper
Peel and finely dice the jicama into small cubes. The smaller the better.
Cut off the white part of green onions and finely sliced. Slice the stems and set aside.
In a large bowl, add in the ground pork, jicama, finely sliced white part of green onions, garlic, fish sauce, tapioca starch, kosher salt and ground black pepper.
Using your hands, mix until well combined. You want the meatball mixture to be sticky.
Use a medium sized cookie scoop, scoop the pork mixture and form meatballs. If you don’t have a medium cookie scoop, scoop about 1-1 ½ tbsp of pork mixture to form meatballs.
Set aside until ready to use.
Preheat a large skillet over medium-high heat with avocado oil.
Add in the garlic cloves and tomato paste and saute for about 20 seconds.
Next, mix in the diced tomatoes, applesauce, fish sauce, Bare Bones Chicken Broth, and ½ cup water.
Bring to a boil and then lower heat to medium-low and simmer for about 5 minutes covered.
Remove the lid, make room in the skillet by pushing the tomatoes to the edge to form a well, and then gently add the meatballs.
Cover the skillet, cook for 5 minutes, and then flip the meatballs to cook for an additional 5 minutes. Repeat this process until meatballs are cooked through.
Once meatballs are cooked through, remove from skillet.
Combine the tapioca starch with 2 tsp of water. Add the tapioca starch mixture to the skillet, stir and simmer for an additional 5 minutes or until sauce has thickened.
Spoon tomato sauce over meatballs. Serve and garnish with green onion stems.