Porcupine Meatballs Recipe
- 1/2 cup uncooked long grain rice
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/3 cup chopped onion
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon celery salt
- 1/8 teaspoon pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 pound ground beef
- 2 tablespoons canola oil
- 1 can (15 ounces) tomato sauce
- 1 cup water
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
- 1. In a bowl, combine the first seven ingredients. Add beef and mix well. Shape into 1-1/2-in. balls. In a large skillet, brown meatballs in oil; drain. Combine tomato sauce, water, brown sugar and Worcestershire sauce; pour over meatballs. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 1 hour. Yield: 4-6 servings.
1 each: 284 calories, 14g fat (4g saturated fat), 50mg cholesterol, 900mg sodium, 21g carbohydrate (6g sugars, 1g fiber), 17g protein.
Reviews for Porcupine Meatballs
"This is a fantastic recipe. I'd been craving porcupine meatballs, a memory from childhood. I also babysit my great-grandson once a week and wanted something for lunch that might appeal to a 2 1/2 year old. I followed the instructions to the letter except for the celery salt. I had some, but I couldn't remember how old it was so I omitted that ingredient. The meatballs were perfect...the rice perfectly cooked and the sauce was thick and savory. I only meant to sample them as they are to be our lunch tomorrow. I put three on a saucer and ended up going back for three more. (I'm actually tempted to go back a 3rd time.) I've copied the recipe and added it to my notebook of favorites. Someone suggested that the ones who complained of undercooked rice might have made the meatballs too big. I simmered mine exactly an hour and the rice was just right."
"This recipe is so good. I have finally found one from my childhood. My go to meatball recipe now. Thanks so much for sharing."
"The sauce is thick and very tasty. The only negative I have is that, as others mentioned, the rice was not fully tender even after cooking longer than called for. Next time I make these (and we definitely liked them enough to make again), I will either try minute rice or else use precooked regular rice. I got 19 one and a half inch meatballs from a pound of ground beef."
"Very good easy pleasy recipe. I'm thinking for the people that the rice didn't get done the meatballs were probably to big, Will make this again."
"I was so disappointed! The long grain rice did not get cooked inside of the meatballs even after an hour. My family tried to eat them but no one was able to finish or enjoy them since the texture was crunchy rice:( I did not see one other comment with the same problem. What did I do wrong?"
"My family loves these meatballs. We have them once a month, at least!"
"Fabulous!!! I followed your recipe exactly, except doubled and added a can of rotel and one can of tomato sauce. Soooo delicious, and easy! Thank you!!"
"Good recipe. Followed it exactly. Mixture was not holding together like I wanted so I did add an egg and some bread crumbs. That did the trick."
"I make these with milk instead of water, and omit the brown sugar. I brown them and put them in pressure cooker for 20 minutes. I got a pressure cooker 49 yrs ago so I could make these for my husband."
"Very similar to recipe from WWII using the rice to stretch the scarce meat."
"My mom used to make these back in the 70's. They are just as good as I remember."
"This is a family favorite for us, has been since it was published in the cookbook many moons ago! My teen kids and in-laws (when visiting) request it often. The only thing I do different is omit the brown sugar, sometimes. Thanks for the recipe!"
"these took me back to my childhood! Tasty and warm/cozy feeling to eat. Scary/fascinating to look at. Even though i used marinara instead of homemade sauce they were great. also as leftovers."
"My family likes these meatballs a lot. I serve them with more rice (which they think is funny, but hey, you gotta fill up those boys somehow) I put them in the oven for about 20 min. instead of browning them in a skillet, then continue as the recipe says."
"These are soooo yummy!"
"I have attempted porcupine meatballs before and they always fall apart and or the rice doesn't cook I used this recipe and it worked like a charm. I opted to bake the meatballs- followed recipe but instead of using a pot, placed in un greased baking dish and then covered in sauce. Baked at 350 for 30 minutes COVERED. Then uncovered and baked 35 more minutes. Flipped balls to other side and splashed some sauce on top after 15 minutes uncovered. Served with mashed potatoes and "butter peas". My one year old and husband loved this meal. Keeper!"
"Very good and so easy!!! Just like my mom used to make!!!"
"awesome been looking for this one"
"I live in AK and I made these with MOOSE meat and OH MY GOODNESS it was so delicious. The moose meat just absorbs all the flavors, I will definitely be keeping and recommending this recipe."
"My husband says this is a keeper! Easy to make and delicious."
"I used this same recipe back in the 70's to stuff green peppers. The extra meat became smaller "porcupine meatballs". It's been years since I've made them...maybe tonight!! Thanks for the reminder. This is a great meal!"
"Actually I had never heard of these before I made them today. My husbands mother used to make them when he was little so I used this recipe and he loved it! Will definitely make again."
"I've loved these since my grandma made them for me when I was a little girl...45 years ago! I've made them often in my life but usually make the sauce from Cream of Mushroom soup with about 1/2 can of milk or water and a couple drops of Worcestershire added. To make it even easier (and the way my grandma did it), is to not brown the meatballs. Mix the meatball ingredients, shape into meatballs and put in an even layer in a casserole dish and pour the soup mixture over. Cook at 350, covered, for 30 minutes. Remove cover and cook for 30 more minutes. Then I put them on top of mashed potatoes, spoon sauce over all and enjoy! It's fun to watch people's faces when you tell them you're serving Porcupines too ;-) Now I'm hungry for these and have to go make them for dinner."
"Delicious and easy to make!"
"I love these, I have been making them for my family for years. I use celery seed instead of celery salt, when I double the recipe, I only use the 1 tsp of salt. I also bake the meatballs, drain ,then pour the sauce over the meatballs, bake 20 minutes more."
"I make these all the time for my family and they always turn out great! I like to serve them with mashed potatoes and corn."
"Very Good. I doubled the recipe and will finely dice the onion next time. My 5 yr old son loved them!"
"We enjoyed these tasty meatballs. Easy to make, and I like the fact that you can fix the rest of the meal while they are simmering."
"made these for years but use tomato soup intead of tomatoe sauce"
"These were great meatballs in a tangy sweet sauce. I'll definitely make them again!"
"I have been making these for at least 15 years or more. They are Really delicious. I think they were in an old TOH magazine."
"Sorry about the long review. I need to stop drinking before posting. Use 4 Tsp of Worcestershire sauce ( not 4 Tbsp ). And after I returned the meatballs to the pan and covered with sauce, I also put a lid over my pan while it simmered in the sauce."
"<p>We made this tonight following the recipe basically word for word. I simply doubled the ingredients because I just couldn't see 1 pound of hamburger filling up three people. We used white instant rice for the recipe and it worked great in my opinion.</p><p>Two adults and our 16 year old daughter. She ate five of the twenty meatballs that I was able to make for the 2 pounds of burger. I browned in olive oil on medium high heat and basically just browned both sides because the 12" skillet was a little crowded. I removed the browned meatballs to a plate while I disposed of the grease from the pan. I also rinsed the pan with hot water once the grease was gone. I returned the meatballs to the pan and covered with the sauce (2x recipe for me).</p><p>Simmered on a low bubble for 45 minutes (turning the meatballs a couple times). They were just great. I couldn't believe my daughter ate five of the twenty I made. My only suggestion is to take the time to make the meatballs evenly sized, and to be sure and mix the ingredients thoroughly before turning into meatballs. I suppose the only thing I changed was that I mixed only 3/4 cup of water to the ground beef and added two eggs. In the sauce I did not add the water at all, just the two 15 oz cans of tomato sauce, 4Tsp of Worchestershire sauce, and 4 Tbsp of brown sugar.</p><p>15 of the 20 meatballs were eaten. Only due to stomach capacity of 3 satisfied Kansan's. We will make this more often. So easy!</p>"
"I love this recipe! It reminds me of the meatballs my mom used to make when I was little. The only change I made to it was I added 3 tbsp of Worcestershire instead of 2 tsp and reduced the brown sugar to 1 tbsp - I really prefer a tangier sauce. you can also add a little cayenne to give it a little kick. Otherwise this recipe is perfect!"
"My children loved making these meatballs - I loved eating them! No hard to slip brown rice into this one either."
"When my youngest son was three (1996) he exclaimed, "I'll have more delicious please!" It has been a requested birthday meal favorite of his ever since."
"These were really good. They turned out much more spikey and porcupine-looking than the picture shows."
"Made this last night and the kids loved it. My son kept asking for more and normally you have to beg him to just take one more bite. I did make one change in the recipe, my husband does not like his food to be sweet so instead of the brown sugar I added about 1/2- 1 teaspoon of ginger, roughly, I did not measure. And I also made them in the pressure cooker without browning to save on time. Only had to cook them for 15-20 min. at 15 lbs of pressure."
"I have been making this ever since it appeared in your magazine years ago. This is one of our most favorite meatball recipe. The only thing I do different is add a little onion powder to the meatballs and I usually add a 8oz. can of tomato sauce because we like extra sauce. We love it withashed potatoes or potatoes I put through my river. DELICIOUS!!! We love the leftovers too :-)"
"Yum! My aunt makes something very similer to these, and I've always loved her's. These are good too."
"An easy to fix favorite with great flavor. Usually have all the ingredients in the pantry so it's a good, quick, and easy workday meal at our house."
"While I think these would be fun for kids as the meatballs do take on a fun "spiky" porcupine look as you cook them, I only found them "ok" in taste. I think next time I would still make the meatballs with the rice but try a different recipe for the sauce."
"I liked the recipe because I had everything on hand; it did not take special ingredients. My family loved it!"
"This is tops in comfort food. I have to admit ,that the first time in my married life, I did not have tomato sauce on hand, so I used petite diced tomatoes I already had on hand. Ran them through the blender and it worked very well. These were even better (as many tomatoey recipes are) the next day as leftovers. Thanks so much. This is just what I was looking for."
"I can't quite figure out what all the excitement is about this recipe. It was just okay. I would prefer meatballs without rice anyday and the sauce wasn't great. I would far prefer spaghetti sauce or sweet and sour or mushroom or just about anything else. Won't make this again, but glad I tried it."
"Have made these many times. Inexpensive, easy, and delicious! Usually serve them over mashed potatoes. I also usually double the sauce, but I like the sauce to be a little less sweet, so I don't double the brown sugar. It's a winner every time I serve it. Thanks for sharing this great recipe!"
"This is a very good recipe. The only change I made was to add cut up green peppers to the sauce and, since I was out of onions, I replaced them with 3 tablespoons of dried, minced onion. The dried onion added very nice flavor. This recipe will make an excellent stuffed peppers recipe as well."
"A good recipe. I didn't change a thing. These would even be good as a meatball sub with hot peppers and cheese. This is a keeper."
"These were great meatballs. With the rice in the meatballs and the tomato sauce, it kind of reminded me of cabbage rolls without the cabbage. I doubled the entire recipe and had just enough to feed two adolescent boys, their father, and myself"
"These are good. After reading the reviews I decided to double the sauce. I had only one can of tomato sauce so I used that and one can of petite cut tomatoes. I omitted the water since the canned tomatoes have a lot of water in them. It turned out great. My husband loved them and I usually don't get good reviews for "my meatballs" :)"
"I doubled the sauce ingredients. This is a great freezer meal; I make extra meatballs which can be frozen, then thawed and browned."
"This is by far the best recipe I have ever gotten from Taste of Home. This is my six year olds favorite meal...and that says a lot since she is such a picky eater. This would be a great dish for a potluck or for a meal to impress your friends, family or co-workers!"
"My husband, who usually doesn't like meatballs, went back for seconds with these!!! They are great!"
"This recipe, served with the baked mashed potatoes, has been a number 1 favorite with my family and friends since it first appeard in the magazine in 1995.I always double or triple it and make twice as much sauce as called for per batch, yet there is never anything left!! The more I make, the more they eat!!!I use it for a new mommy gift, housewarming, welcome back, etc. It is always a hit! Thanks!!"
"Delicious! I like to forego the tomato sauce occasionally and use a mushroom gravy instead."
"Just like the ones my mom use to make. The whole family loves them, and there is never any leftovers."
"My mother-in-law use to make this for my hubby and I when we first got together and I just loved it. Over the years I have been trying different recipes so I could make it myself. I finally found a keeper. My picky child ate every bit of it with no complaints.I took a few of the reviews and doubled the tomato sauce, worcstershire sauce and brown sugar. It was excellent. Served with rice and green beans. Since I doubled the sauce I served it over the rice. Very yummy and will make it again. : )"
"I've been making this recipe since it first appeared in your magazine. THERE IS NOTHING FINER IN THE PORCUPINE RECIPE area!"
"Delicious, I didn't have celery salt so used seasoning salt. Did double the sauce as well. Everyone cleaned their plates!"
"Oops..I meant Spinach Apple Salad."
"This has been a family favorite for years. I make mine with lean ground turkey. And, I also make the Baked Mashed Potatos, which are delicious too. This recipe was in a TOH magazine that also include Emily's Spinach Salad as a side (with apple and raisens)...a very refreshing accompaniment to this meal. YUMMY!!!"
"This recipe rocks!!! Easy to make. I double the sauce though, doesn't seem to be enough."
"The whole family loved these. I made extra and sent them to my sister-in-law and my brother-in-law said I could cook for him anytime. A big hit with everyone. Definitely a keeper!"
"These meatballs are wonderful! Very easy to prepare too. I served them with another TOH recipe for Baked Mashed Potatoes. Great meal!"
"These meatballs are great... our family loves them! We do substitute quick-cooking oats for the long grain rice, as oats are always in our cabinet, but they're perfect every time we make them. Truly... a wonderful recipe to have!"
"My husband loves these hearty meatballs! One time, I accidently doubled the Worcestershire sauce and it made them taste even better!"