Easy Recipe: Mighty Green Balls

Monday’s are stressful. So, like most other problems in life, my first recommended course of action is to use healthy food as a solution.

To fight off Monday woes, focus on eating greens all day to support mood and energy balance.

These mighty green balls feature kale and lean ground turkey, and are oh-so satisfying, juicy, and delicious. Served over a fresh salad, you don’t even need to use a dressing!

About turkey: it’s a good source of tryptophan, an amino acid used to synthesize the neurotransmitter serotonin. Serotonin helps with mood balance and mental clarity, so it can help fend off food cravings and overeating triggered by bad vibes, exhausting, anxiety, and frustration. Increasing your tryptophan intake is shown to help improve sleep, control the stress response, promote good energy through the day, and regulate inflammation. Tryptophan is converted by the body into 5HTP, which has been shown to play a role in managing depression, anxiety, migraines, ADHD, PMS, the list goes on. Also, serotonin imbalance is seen in Crohn’s disease, and 5HTP is involved in proper gut function. There’s much to still be learned about the connection between IBD, IBS and 5HTP, but for now, focusing on eating quality proteins wouldn’t hurt!

Any food that can buffer the Monday blues, and butter me up for day two of the work week, is A-Ok in my book. Here is the recipe:

Mighty Green Balls

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cooking time: 12 minutes

Serves: 4


  • 1 lb lean ground turkey
  • 1 half onion, minced
  • 1/2 bunch kale, washed, finely sliced and diced
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 3/4 cup bread crumbs or 1/2 cup preferred flour
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • Salt and pepper per preference
  • Optional: 1/2 cup minced herbs (try parsley, cilantro, or basil)
  • Cooking oil


Prep vegetables. Place ground turkey in a large bowl. Add all the ingredients and mix well with a fork or your hands. Form 2″ turkey balls and set aside.

In a large skillet, heat cooking oil on medium heat, coating the pan. When oil is hot, add the turkey balls. Do not overcrowd the pan. Cover the pan and allow to cook for 5-6 minutes, covered, and until browned. Flip and cook the other side using the same method. Gently press the balls with a spatula, if no juices are released, they are done. It’s that easy!

Published by Okay to Eat

Natasha Eziquiel-Shriro, MS, RDN, CDN

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