Pesto Meatball Melts.
These pesto meatball melts are a satisfying weeknight meal! Pesto turkey meatballs on a toasty baguette with lots of cheese. Delish!
Have a ton of garden basil hanging around? I’ve got you covered!
These pesto meatball melts make for the most satisfying weeknight meal. They are super versatile and a great way to utilize some pesto you may have at the end of the summer season!
This is one of those meals that I *thought* would be good, but didn’t realize just HOW good it would be until I started making it regularly.
Oh my word.
We LOVE this dish. It’s so flavorful and a different way to enjoy meatballs.
I got the idea of the melt from my french onion meatballs. Love serving those on top of sourdough. I didn’t want to make a full blown meatball sub with these, but I knew I wanted to do something cheesy and sandwichy.
Sandwichy. I guess that’s a word now.
So meatball melts were born!
I like using sliced baguettes here, but of course you could use toast or even a bun if it’s what you have on hand. And my preference is to use ground turkey, but of course you can use ground chicken or beef too!
I love adding the pesto to meatballs because it’s like the pesto is working overtime for you. The pesto is already loaded with basil and garlic and parmesan. Adding that to the meatballs means it’s almost all we have to add – no need for a ton of stuff! I do this in my mini pesto meatball soup and it’s perfect.
After testing these a few times, I decided that I do like a little extra parmesan. I know, shocking. But other than that, it’s really just the pesto, some breadcrumbs and eggs to bring it all together. So super simple and such a great way to use up basil from the garden or another kind of pesto you may have.
I love making fresh pesto – I make a batch almost every single week. I also will freeze it at the end of the summer season so I always have it on hand. However! If you’re in a pinch and want to bring a flavorful meal together, you can always use your favorite store-bought pesto. It really is that easy.
So back to the melts.
I like to spread pesto on the baguette too. Yes, if you haven’t figured this out by now, it is for pesto lovers! Top pesto-covered baguettes with meatballs, top with cheese and throw in the oven for a few minutes.
This is heavenly!
You can serve them for dinner, of course. You could also make them a game day snack by slicing the baguette into bite-size squares and topping with just one meatball. So like little meatball melt squares. Really the options are endless.
They’re warm and cheesy and toasty and so hearty. We love ’em!
Pesto Meatball Melts
Pesto Meatball Melts
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 pound ground turkey, (I like to use 94%)
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- ½ cup seasoned breadcrumbs
- ⅓ cup pesto, homemade or prepared
- ¼ cup finely grated parmesan cheese
- kosher salt and pepper
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 baguette, about 10 to 12 inches long
- ½ cup pesto, or more if you’re really a pesto fanatic
- 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese, for topping
- parmesan cheese, for topping
- fresh basil, for topping
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- In a large bowl, combine the ground turkey with the egg, breadcrumbs, pesto, parmesan cheese and a big pinch of salt and pepper. Mix to combine - but don’t overmix!
- Roll the mixture into meatballs - I like mine to be around 1-inch in size. I find that wetting your hands with cold water helps the meatballs come together smoothly.
- Heat the olive oil in a large oven-safe skillet over medium heat. Add the meatballs in a single layer and brown all over. Just cook until they are golden brown, then toss them and cook on the other sides. Don’t overcook because we’re going to stick them in the oven!
- Once the meatballs are browned, place the skillet in the oven for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the internal temperature of the meatballs reaches 165 degrees F.
- While the meatballs are in the oven, slice the baguette in half lengthwise. Place it on a baking sheet. Spread the pesto on the baguette.
- Once the meatballs are finished, remove them from the skillet and place them on the pesto covered-ed baguette. Sometimes I slice them in half before placing them on the bread - sometimes leave them whole. It’s really your preference!
- Top with mozzarella cheese. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes, or until the cheese is golden and melty.
- Top with parmesan and basil. Slice and serve!
I get the golden bubbly cheese!