Grandmother’s Porcupine Meatballs

These simple to make and whole grain meatballs are great for a tasty bite-sized appetizer, cheesy sub sandwhich or served alongside a green salad with veggies.

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Servings SERVES 6
Ready in TOTAL TIME 60 mins


  • 1 bag Success® White Rice or Brown Rice
  • 1 ¼ lbs ground beef
  • 1 can (10 ¾ oz.) condensed tomato soup
  • ½ cup water
  • 1 tbsp onion powder
  • salt and ground black pepper, to taste


  • Just like Grandma used to make, these simple but tasty bite-sized meatballs are an all-time family favorite! Make with Success® Brown Rice to add even more whole grain goodness.

    Step 1

  • Prepare rice according to package directions. Let cool.

    Step 2

  • Combine ground beef and cooked rice and mix well. Shape into small meatballs. Set aside.

    Step 3

  • Pour tomato soup, water and onion powder into saucepan. Add salt and pepper. Stir well. Simmer on medium heat for 10 minutes.

    Step 4

  • Drop meatballs into sauce and cover pan. Simmer on low to medium heat for 15 minutes. Stir once gently.

    Step 5

  • Serve hot. Serve with Tossed Green Salad.


    Feel free to sub in ground turkey for ground beef or use a mixture of ground beef and ground pork, if desired.

  • For flavor, Parmesan cheese may be added to the rice and meat mixture.

How to make meatballs!

This easy to make meatball recipe couldn’t get any simpler. One of the first steps to getting them to stay in their signature shape is to make sure you have a binder. Cooked rice works as a great binder, and with Boil-in-Bag rice, that cooks up in 10 minutes, you can add whole grains to your meal in a lot less time.

It’s important to let the rice cool a bit before adding it to the meat so that it does not release any excess moisture and your meatballs fall apart. Another important element to getting the right texture is not overworking the meat when mixing. We suggest using clean hands to mix, but if that’s not something you are up for, feel free to use a spatula or spoon. Then comes the fun part, shaping your mixture! Remember, the smaller the meatball shape, the quicker they will cook thoroughly in the sauce.

Letting them sit in your tomato sauce is a great way to get them soaking up all of the great flavor while they cook and involves less clean up. You’ll want to keep the lid on so they have the appropriate heat to cook all the way through. To test and see if your meat is fully cooked, make sure to cut into one to see before turning off the heat.

Serve them while they’re hot!

These can be served in a variety of ways, keep them small and serve as an appetizer, make them larger and serve with pasta or a rice salad and/or additional baked vegetables to make it a well balanced meal including whole grains.

Use this recipe to meal prep throughout the week varying between a pasta or Garden Rice Salad, meatball sandwich or simply meatballs and vegetables.