Garlic and Herb Meatballs in Coconut Mushroom Sauce

Well, that title is a mouthful.

I enjoy eating and making meatballs and ninety nine percent of the time I bake them. This time round I decided to shallow fry them and all I can say is this, if you have an oven just bake your meatballs. Baking cooks many at a go and is pretty hustle free, you flip them just once 🙂

I developed this recipe about a week or so ago and the results were amazing. I am calling them garlic and herb to just give a leeway to use your favourite herbs or whichever herbs you have on hand.

I used a mixture of dried and fresh herbs because that what I had. I worked with dried oregano, dried thyme, fresh rosemary and basil. Oh and another thing, I never put breadcrumbs or eggs in my meatballs, yeah! It’s possible to make meatballs without those two.

The ingredients needed.

Anyway, let’s get into making the meatballs.

Add the minced meat, the herbs, minced garlic, salt and black pepper. Use your hands to get everything mixed, then make the meatballs. You can use to freeze the meatballs for later cooking or cook right away as I did.

Since I was making a coconut mushroom sauce to go with the meatballs, I started with sauteing the mushrooms. I used canned mushrooms because they are easier to get than fresh ones. If you have access to fresh, use those.

For the mushrooms, in a skillet add a little oil and add the mushrooms. Always ensure not to crowd the pan since the aim is to brown the mushrooms. Remember to pat dry the mushrooms before putting them in the pan. then finish off with some salt and some minced garlic. Remove from the pan and set aside.

set aside 🙂

Now for the meatballs, in the same skillet add oil to coat the bottom of the pan and add the meatballs. Cook them for about four minutes before flipping to cook further. The meatballs will take roughly 12 -15 minutes to cook with occasional turning to ensure all sides are cooked.

Depending on the number of meatballs, you’ll need to cook them in batches to avoid crowding the pan. Set aside the meatballs. Yep, today we are setting aside everything 🙂

Reduce the oil and leave about two tablespoons of oil. Now we are at the sauce making part of the recipe. Essentially butter is used but I didn’t have any. The base of the sauce is a roux of butter (oil) and flour then adding milk to make bechamel. I added both coconut milk and milk.

look at all those flavour bits in the pan. It’s called fond
cooking the flour and added garlic

in goes the milks (coconut and cow’s)

Since I was going for curry flavours with the garlic and coconut milk, for the sauce I added some garam masala and the classic nutmeg (bechamel isnt’ bechamel without nutmeg).

freshly grated nutmeg
garam masala

Once the bechamel is going, taste for seasoning them add in the meatballs and let them simmer down for ten minutes. Finish off by adding the sauteed mushrooms.


Voila, garlic and herb meatballs in coconut mushroom sauce.

look at that sauce

Very creamy and fully of flavour.

Perfect with some spaghetti or steamed rice.

I mixed mine with some spaghetti. When combining sauces with pasta always reserve some of the leftover pasta water to thin out the sauce.

boiling spaghetti Used the brand barilla (quite the ish)
in goes the spaghetti
thinning out with some reserved pasta water

Spaghetti with garlic and herb meatballs in coconut mushroom sauce.

so glossy and creamy

my daughter slurping away

Garlic and Herb Meatballs in Mushroom Coconut Sauce

See Detailed Nutrition Info on

    for the meatballs

  • 1 kg minced beef
  • 1 heaped tbsp dried oregano
  • 1 heaped tbsp dried thyme
  • 1 tbsp fresh rosemary, finely chopped
  • 6-8 basil leaves, chopped
  • 6-8 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Oil for shallow frying
  • for the coconut mushroom sauce

  • 1 can mushrooms or 1 pack fresh mushrooms, sliced
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp oil or unsalted butter
  • 2 tbsp all purpose flour
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tbsp garam masala
  • Salt and pepper to taste


In a bowl combine the minced meat, herbs, garlic, salt and black pepper.

Using your hands, mix thoroughly then form into balls.

You can use a tablespoon to measure out the meat mixture.

Set aside the formed meatballs.

In large skillet add a tablespoon of oil and saute the mushrooms.

Stir occasionally to ensure even cooking, this will take 7-9 miuntes

Once sauteed season with salt and add some garlic.

Stir to cook the garlic then remove the mushrooms from the pan,

Add more oil to the same pan, enough to cover the bottom.

Add the meatballs, don't crowd the pan. You may need to cook them in batches

Turn the meatball every 3 minutes to ensure all sides are browned.

Cook for 12-15 minutes, remove and set aside,

Once all the meatballs are done, reduce the oil and leave about two tablespoons.

Over medium heat, add the flour and stir for 2-3 minutes to cook.

Add the crushed garlic and stir.

Gradually add the milk and coconut milk, stirring continually to avoid lumps.

Add nutmeg and garam masala.

Taste for salt and black pepper and adjust accordingly

Add back the meatballs and let them simmer down with the sauce for 7-10 minutes.

Finish off with the sauteed mushrooms.

Remove from heat and enjoy.

Alternatively you can bake the meatballs at 180 degrees C for 20 minutes, turning them over after 15 minutes. The recipe is garlic and herb so you can use your favourite herbs or what you have on hand. You can also omit mushrooms if they are hard to come by. If serving with pasta, reserve some of the pasta water to thin out the sauce.



  1. Fantastic. Najilaumu nimechelewa kuijua hii blog. Thank u so much. I’m now following you everywhere


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