Meatballs in Almond Sauce served as an appetizer with toothpicks


These Meatballs in Almond Sauce are a Spanish tapa but in my house they’re also an everyday dinner. If you plan well you can take them to a party as an appetizer and have enough leftover for dinner the next night.

Everyone needs one or two favourite meatball recipes and this one is ours. Of course some of you make make meatballs without following a recipe. I don’t want to miss out on amazing classics from around the world so when I find an amazing dish I save the recipe so I can repeat it.

What Are Tapas

Tapas, sometimes referred to as the little dishes of Spain, are like appetizers. They come in a wide variety of types from simple to complex. Take these meatballs as an appetizer to any event or host a Tapas Party and make several of them.

These are the best tapas dishes that come out of my kitchen.

Best Tool for Making Meatballs

We cook a lot so I love efficiencies in the kitchen. The best tool for meatballs, muffins, cookies and many other things are portion scoops. I have three sizes of metal ones with a thumb-grip that make portioning quick and easy. Conveniently, everything is the same size so they cook evenly too.

I cook all the meatballs and sauce together. After dinner I divide them into different amounts for a second meal and maybe some individual portions. If you eat before you go out (celiacs know all about that) then keep something like these tasty meatballs in the freezer just for that reason.

How To Serve Meatballs

I love the idea of making a favourite everyday recipe and dressing it up for company. When I’m taking these meatballs to a party I make more of an effort with each step. I’ll cut the vegetables more exact, use fresh parsley for sure, add fancy toothpicks and garnish the platter.

Suddenly my everyday meatballs are a gourmet appetizer and they’re a hit at any party.

Let me know in the comments below if you have a tapas story of it you made these meatballs in almond sauce.

Originally posted 2017, updated December 2022.

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Meatballs in Almond Sauce

Served individually on a toothpick these meatballs are a tapa. In my house they are also an everyday dinner. If you plan well you can take them to a party as an appetizer and have enough leftover for dinner the next night.
Author: Cinde Little
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Course: Appetizer, Main Course
Cuisine: Spanish
Keyword: meatballs in almond sauce, tapas
Servings: 30 meatballs



  • ¾ cup fresh gluten free breadcrumbs*
  • ¼ cup white wine
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 lb ground pork
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 Tbsp chopped fresh parsley (or 1 Tbsp dried parsley)
  • tsp salt
  • ¾ tsp pepper


  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 carrot, finely chopped
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 10 garlic cloves, peeled
  • cups gluten free beef stock
  • ¼ cup ground almonds
  • ½ cup frozen peas
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 Tbsp chopped, fresh parsley (or 2 tsp dried parsley)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • salt and pepper to taste



  • Cover a baking sheet with wax paper and set aside.
  • Put breadcrumbs in a bowl and pour wine on top. Let soak while you prepare the remaining meatball ingredients.
  • In a large bowl evenly combine ground beef, pork, eggs, garlic, parsley, salt, pepper. Add soaked breadcrumbs and stir just until combined.
  • Using a small scoop form cocktail size meatballs onto lined baking tray. Makes about 80 meatballs.
  • Heat oil in large pan with high sides over medium-high heat. Sauté meatballs until well browned on all sides. Work in batches and don’t overcrowd the pan, remove meatballs as they are done.


  • Add onion and carrot to the pan, sauté until wilted, about 5 minutes.
  • Add white wine and garlic cloves stirring to scrape up the brown bits. Boil until most of the liquid has evaporated.
  • Stir in the beef stock and ground almonds.
  • Add cooked meatballs along with the peas, green onions, parsley, bay leaf, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to simmer, cover and cook for 30 minutes.


*Collect ends of bread or leftover buns in the freezer and use to make fresh breadcrumbs when needed.
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