Photo: Yuhnee Kim; Styling: Karen Shinto Photo by: Photo: Yuhnee Kim; Styling: Karen Shinto

Mini Lamb Meatballs with Cilantro-Mint Chutney

This Indian-spiced meat mixture makes great burgers too—try them on folded naan with the chutney and a slice of tomato.

Sunset JANUARY 2011

  • Yield: Makes 40
  • Total:45 Minutes


  • Meatballs
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cumin seeds, divided
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 pound ground lamb (preferably grass-fed)
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • Chutney
  • 3 tablespoons low-fat Greek yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon minced serrano chile*
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups loosely packed cilantro
  • 1 cup loosely packed fresh mint leaves
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • About 1 tsp. lemon juice


1. Make meatballs: In a small frying pan, toast cumin over medium heat until fragrant, 3 to 5 minutes. Grind in a spice grinder, put 1 tsp. in a medium bowl, and reserve the rest for chutney. Grind coriander and fennel and add to bowl with remaining spices, salt, lamb, and egg. Mix gently. Chill mixture until firm enough to shape, about 15 minutes.

2. Make chutney: Put all chutney ingredients and reserved cumin in a food processor and whirl until very smooth. Add more lemon juice if you like. Spoon into a serving bowl.

3. Finish meatballs: With wet hands, form chilled meat into 1-in. balls and set on a baking sheet. Heat oil in a heavy 12-in. nonstick frying pan over medium heat. Fry meatballs until well browned all over, 8 to 10 minutes total. Transfer to paper towels.

4. Serve meatballs with toothpicks and the chutney.

*For a milder chutney, seed chile before mincing.

Note: Nutritional analysis is per 3-meatball serving with 3 tsp. chutney.

Nutritional Information

Amount per serving
  • Calories: 94
  • Calories from fat: 60%
  • Protein: 7.1g
  • Fat: 6.3g
  • Saturated fat: 2.2g
  • Carbohydrate: 2.5g
  • Fiber: 1.1g
  • Sodium: 204mg
  • Cholesterol: 39mg

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Mini Lamb Meatballs with Cilantro-Mint Chutney recipe