Porcupine Meatballs – they are meatballs made with ground beef, rice, onion, and bell pepper that’s cooked in a simple tomato sauce mixture. They taste like a stuffed pepper but in meatball form.
A classic favorite from my childhood and one of the tastiest comfort foods!
The BEST Porcupine Meatballs!
Why are they called porcupine meatballs (or as we always just called them “porcupines”)?
Obviously they’re no actual porcupine meat included in the ingredients, rather it’s how the rice in the meatballs pokes out while cooking giving them a porcupine-like appearance.
This dish became very popular during the great depression because it only required a few basic ingredients. Traditionally they were made with ground beef, rice, onion and canned tomato soup.
My mom made these quite frequently for us growing up so now they are one of the dinners from home I crave.
I think of them as more of a “stuffed pepper meatball” because this version includes bell pepper which isn’t so traditional. But I would say it’s a must!
Here I adapted my Mom’s recipe but have also included egg for binding, a few extra seasonings, and have browned them for a little more flavor. But if you want to keep it perfectly simple you can skip the browning and they’re still exceptionally delicious.