A unique, easy to eat, cocktail party appetizer bursting with savory flavor.
The perfect cocktail party hors d’oeuvre should of course be delicious, but it should also be bite-size and require only one hand to eat. In other words, you should be able to pluck it off the serving tray and pop it into your mouth in one fell swoop. Blue Cheese Wild Rice Mini Meatballs make the perfect cocktail party appetizer for these very reasons. They’re easy to eat and are absolutely bursting with savory flavor. Pretzel sticks are used in lieu of toothpicks as a serving utensil. This makes for a clever presentation and provides a fun (and edible) way for you to grab, dip, and eat.
Use a ¾ ounce ice cream scoop to form Blue Cheese Wild Rice Mini Meatballs. That’s roughly 2 tablespoons of the meat mixture for each mini meatball. Make ahead tip: freeze the uncooked mini meatballs on the cookie sheets (no need to spray with olive oil) then transfer them to zip lock freezer bags. Defrost before baking or, if frozen, simply add 2-4 minutes to the total baking time.
Blue Cheese Wild Rice Mini Meatballs are gluten-free. Most meatballs are made with breadcrumbs, but in this recipe wild rice takes the place of bread crumbs as a filler, and, as a bonus, gives the mini meatballs a nutty, earthy texture.
Serve Blue Cheese Wild Rice Mini Meatballs with Roasted Garlic Ketchup or your favorite marinara. For a double whammy of blue cheese flavor try Blue Cheese Rosemary Greek Yogurt Dressing as a dipping sauce.
- Olive oil cooking spray
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1½ cups cooked wild rice
- ⅔ cup crumbled blue cheese/3 ounces/85 g
- 1 small onion (3 ½ to 4 ounces in size), finely chopped
- 1 large egg
- 2 Tablespoons of chopped fresh rosemary
- 2 medium cloves of garlic, finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- 32 gluten-free mini pretzel sticks
- Preheat oven to 375° F and lightly spray two baking sheets with olive oil cooking spray.
- Combine remaining ingredients (except pretzel sticks) and shape into 32 mini meatballs using a ¾ ounce ice cream scoop.
- Place meatballs on baking sheets and bake for 8 minutes on bottom racks of oven. Flip each meatball over, rotate the baking sheets, and return to the oven for another 8 minutes for a total cooking time of 16 minutes.
- Pierce each meatball with a gluten-free pretzel stick and serve with your favorite marinara or homemade ketchup.
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I haven’t made meatballs in the longest time–these would make the cutest appetizers ever! :]
These mini meatballs sound so flavorful and delicious! I like the idea of using rice instead of breadcrumbs! I can’t wait to try them!
Thanks Sonali. The wild rice gives the meatballs a nice texture too.
These look so delicious & can’t wait to make them, but my husband doesn’t like bleu cheese. Could you suggest something comparable? Thank you.
Hi Sandy – Try substituting 3 ounces of feta cheese. Parmean or cheddar would work too. Thanks for visitng my blog!
Great recipe. I added a few dried cranberries for color and instead of pretzel used crisp carrot stick.
What a great idea!