Toddler Meals: Iron-rich Meatballs

We recently found out Little B is anemic. Iron supplements wreak havoc on his digestive system (hello, constipation) so I've been making an effort to up the iron naturally in his diet. He loves meatballs, so I created this meatball recipe that tastes yummy but also is rich in iron and other nutrients. In addition to the ground beef (red meat is obviously a great source of iron), these meatballs feature spinach which provides iron and vitamin A. I love sneaking veggies into recipes! You can tweak this to use whatever your little one likes or whatever veggies you have on hand. Next time I think I'll try these with ground turkey and grated carrots.

Iron-rich Meatballs

1 lb. ground beef
1/4 c. finely chopped onion
1 tsp. minced garlic
1 package frozen chopped spinach
1/2 c. rolled oats
1/4 c. grated parmesan cheese
1 Tbs. worcestershire sause
1 egg
olive oil

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.

Heat a tablespoon or two of olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions and garlic and saute until soft. Add spinach, reduce heat to medium, and cook until thawed and most liquid has evaporated. Place the onion-spinach mixture in a colander and press with a spatula or wooden spoon to remove remaining liquid.

In a large bowl, combine the ground beef, spinach mixture, oats, parmesan cheese, worcestershire sauce and egg. Mix well to combine. Using moistened hands, roll into balls and place on a greased baking pan.

Bake at 350 for 20 minutes or so (depending on how big your meatballs are).

Let them cool and freeze in Ziploc bags. At mealtime, grab a couple meatballs out of the freezer, microwave on a plate for 45 seconds and you're ready to go!


  1. Just want to let you know how much we love this recipe! My toddler son eats it up! Plus I love how easy it is to make! Thanks for sharing!

  2. Love this recipe...recently found out my little one is anemic also. Instead of oats I use iron fortified oatmeal baby cereal and I also add a 1/4 lb of beef liver (he doesn't even notice.) He loves these. Thanks so much for the idea!!!

  3. Thank you! ! I can't wait to make this for my family. I have both a teenager and toddlers. Getting nutritious food down them is a challenge.


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