Turkey Meatball Bites with Pesto & Spicy Peppers


Seasoned turkey mini meatballs are sautéed and topped with sweet and spicy peppers and pesto sauce, then wrapped with pastry strips and baked until golden brown. Zesty and delicious, these appetizers will go fast!

  • Prep: 30 minutes
  • Cook: 20 minutes
  • Bake: 15 minutes
  • Serves: 36
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3 10



  • 1 lb. 85% lean ground turkey

  • 3/4 cup seasoned dry bread crumbs

  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

  • 1 egg

  • 1 clove garlic, minced

  • 1/3 cup basil pesto

  • 1 dash salt

  • 1 dash ground black pepper

  • 4 tbsp. canola oil

  • 2 tbsp. all-purpose flour

  • 1/2 of a 17.3-ounce package Pepperidge Farm® Puff Pastry Sheets (1 sheet), thawed

  • 18 whole pepperoncini peppers (sweet piquant e peppers), cut in half lengthwise

  • 2 cups Prego® Marinara Italian Sauce or Prego Tradional Italian sauce, heated


  1. Mix the turkey, bread crumbs, cheese, egg, garlic and 3 tablespoons pesto in a large bowl.  Season with the salt and black pepper.  Shape the turkey mixture into 36 (1-inch) mini meatballs.

  2. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat.  Add half the meatballs and cook for 10 minutes or until well browned on all sides.  Remove the meatballs from the skillet.  Repeat with the remaining oil and meatballs.

  3. Heat the oven to 400°F.

  4. Sprinkle the flour on the work surface.  Unfold the pastry sheet on the work surface.  Cut the pastry sheet into 3 rectangles along the fold lines.  Cut each rectangle crosswise into 12 (3/4-inch) strips, making 36 in all.

  5. Top each meatball with 1/4 teaspoon pesto sauce and 1 pepper half, cut-side down.  Wrap 1 pastry strip around each and press the seams to seal.  Place the pastries, seam-side down, into 36 mini muffin-pan cups.

  6. Bake for 15 minutes or until the pastries are golden brown and the meatballs are cooked through.  Serve with the remaining pesto sauce and the marinara sauce for dipping.

Watch a how-to demonstration of this recipe technique.


Watch the demo to see how to make this type of recipe, then consult your recipe for specific instructions.


Don’t try to manipulate Puff Pastry that’s not completely thawed; unfolding it while it’s still frozen could tear the sheet.

When cutting Puff Pastry, the sharper the knife or pastry cutter, the better. A dull edge can cement layers together and prevent pastry from rising.

Try to keep Puff Pastry from becoming too warm when working with it by only using your fingertips—the coolest part of your hands.

Use an egg wash to help seal filled pastries and connect Puff Pastry pieces: mix 1 egg plus 1 tsp. water, brush between layers, then pinch or press together.

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