Ostrich Meatballs

Meatballs in tomato sauce is one of my favourite winter comfort foods and I am pretty pleased with these ostrich meatballs. I was a bit concerned that they could dry out as the meat is lower in fat than beef mince but the tomato sauce keeps them deliciously moist. I don’t think you can add too much basil to the tomato sauce and luckily with today’s supermarket convenience we still have access to basil in the middle of winter.
Instead of serving these with spaghetti, I served it with Polenta Parmesan Chips and the chips were delicious dunked into the sauce.

Ostrich Meatballs with Polenta Parmesan Chips

Ostrich Meatballs baked in Tomato Sauce


  • Tomato Sauce
  • olive oil for frying
  • 2 x 410g tins chopped tomatoes
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • half a teaspoon dried chili
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh origano
  • 4 heaped tablespoons torn fresh basil
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • half a teaspoon of salt
  • Ostrich Meatballs
  • olive oil for frying
  • 500g ostrich mince
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • half a teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
  • 3 sage leaves chopped
  • 1 teaspoon mixed spice
  • 50g breadcrumbs
  • 1 large egg


  1. Start by making the sauce.
  2. Gently fry the onion in some olive oil until soft and translucent.
  3. Add the garlic and fry for a few more minutes.
  4. Add the tinned tomatoes, chili, oregano, 2 tablespoons basil (leave the other 2 for later), sugar and salt.
  5. Bring the mixture to the boil, turn down the heat and let it slowly simmer.
  6. Start the meatballs by gently frying the onion in some olive oil until soft and translucent.
  7. Add the garlic and fry for a few more minutes. Remove from the heat.
  8. In a large bowl add the meat, cooked onion and garlic, salt, parsley and sage, mixed spice, breadcrumbs and egg.
  9. Mix with your hands until combined.
  10. Roll into 24 even sized balls – about the size of a walnut. Place the meatballs in the fridge for 30 minutes.
  11. Remove the tomato sauce from the heat, check and adjust the seasoning and stir in the 2 tablespoons of basil. Set aside.
  12. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C
  13. Heat some olive oil in a pan and shallow fry the chilled meatballs until just browned – they must not be cooked inside as they will bake in the tomato sauce.
  14. Place the meatballs into an oven proof dish, cover with the tomato sauce and bake uncovered for 30 minutes.
  15. Serve with spaghetti or mashed potato or polenta chips. (https://heinstirred.com/2013/07/08/polenta-parmesan-chips/)
  16. By heinstirred
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