Lemongrass Vietnamese Meatballs
If you're looking for meatballs that will rock your world, these Lemongrass Vietnamese Meatballs are it. They're full of delicious Asian flavors, crazy tender and super easy to make. You're going to LOVE them!
Yippee. Hip hip hooray. Omgee I'm loving today! Why? Well, let me tell you, my friend. I'm super excited about today because today is the day I get to share these crazy delish flavor bites (aka Vietnamese Meatballs) with you.
Sharing recipes with my online BFFs is seriously the best. Fist bump.
I've been doing a bunch of banh mi recipe testing around here lately. (It's tough, tough work. Juuuust joking!) In the search of the perfect banh mi fusion everything, I came up with these Vietnamese Meatballs.
The flavor is totally amazeballs, they're super tender AND you can be eating a whole batch in 30 minutes flat. Oh ya, and they also happen to be naturally gluten-free and paleo. What are you waiting for?
What makes these Vietnamese Meatballs so frickin' awesome?
- The flavor. Seriously. Think lemongrass, onions, garlic, and ginger whizzed around in your food processor until they're a paste. Flavor town.
- Fish sauce. Yes, this belongs in the awesome category. It's stinkier than the month-old leftovers you forgot about in the back of your fridge but for some reason it makes everything taste better. Weird and awesome.
- They're flexible! I love them made with ground pork, but beef and chicken are great, too.
- Pan-frying these babies keeps them super tender.
- They're perfect little balls of deliciousness. Cooking them in a frying pan (rather than baking them) prevents them from having flat spots and makes sure they brown all over.
- You can eat them with … everything! Well, almost everything. Think sandwiches, pizza, noodles, nachos, tacos, fries, lettuce wraps, ramen, as an appy. Let your mind go wild with possibility.
Remember to subscribe to THE ENDLESS MEAL'S NEWSLETTER for FREE to get healthy and delicious recipes each week + our cookbook!
Easy Meatball Recipes:
- Sweet Hoisin Meatballs
- Thai Chicken Curry Meatballs with Carrot Noodles
- The Best Ever Spaghetti and Meatballs
- Indian Meatball Curry
Lemongrass Vietnamese Meatballs
If you love this recipe as much as we do, let us know with a 5-star rating!
- 3 stalks lemongrass, white part only
- ¼ cup cilantro
- 1 small onion
- 2 inch piece of ginger
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1 lb. ground pork, beef or chicken
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar, sub coconut sugar or honey for paleo
- 2 tablespoons fish sauce
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce, sub coco aminos for paleo
- 1 teaspoon sriracha
- 1 tablespoon oil
- Place the lemongrass stalks, cilantro, onion, ginger, and garlic into your food processor and process on high until smooth and almost paste-like. Place the ground pork, beef, or chicken into a large bowl and pour in the lemongrass paste. Add all of the remaining ingredients and mix together well. I find using my hands the easiest way to do this.3 stalks lemongrass, ¼ cup cilantro, 1 small onion, 2 inch piece of ginger, 3 cloves garlic, 1 lb. ground pork, beef or chicken, 2 tablespoons brown sugar, 2 tablespoons fish sauce, 2 tablespoons soy sauce, 1 teaspoon sriracha
- Roll 20 meatballs and place them on a baking sheet. Place enough oil in a large frying pan to thinly cover the bottom. Heat the pan over medium-high heat until the oil is shimmering. Cook the meatballs, turning them a few times, until they are well browned and cooked through, about 8-10 minutes.1 tablespoon oil
Are the lemongrass stalls supposed to be the whole stalk or just the soft white inner parts? I made the recipe with the whole stalks (as the recipe didn’t indicate otherwise) but the tough outer layers wouldn’t blend up and I had to pick them all out of the mixture! Whoops.
Hi Shirley. Yes, it’s just the tender white parts at the bottom of the lemongrass stalk that are used. There is a note about it in the ingredients list, but I know that it doesn’t show up where the ingredients are listed under the steps. Sorry for that confusion!
I have no idea why people found it difficult to work with the mixture. It was soft, but it stayed together when I shaped it into meatballs, which is all you can expect I feel. And they were delicious.
This was fabulous! I read the reviews and double the meat and soy sauce sauce mixture. I browned the meatballs and finished in the oven. I cooked baby bok choy in the yummy pan sauce after taking out the meatballs.
Hi there these sound amazing I will probably use 80/20 beef and ground pork combo. Any suggestions what to serve as a dipping sauce? It looked like the pic showed sour cream and siracha?
Thanks a bunch
I like to make a simple spicy mayo with mayonnaise, sriracha, and lime. Spicy sour cream would be a nice option, too. 🙂
This recipe was a disaster. I don’t know how it got any good reviews. The mixture was way too wet. I added a whole head of shredded green cabbage to give it something to hold the meatballs together and it helped but it’s not great. Will not be doing this again.
These meatballs are pretty soft, which is why they’re so good once they’re cooked. ALmond flour (or regular flour) would be a good option if you’re having trouble getting them to come together.
These meatballs turned out great. Quite soft and a bit hard to work with but they tasted amazing.
These are delicious! I actually popped them in the oven and finished them on broil and they came out perfect.
Such a great recipe! I do agree with the other commenters though that the mixture ends up being WAY too wet as is. Either scale back the mixture or scale up the meat by, honestly, like 2-3x if you want it to be able to hold it’s shape.
I LOVE the flavor and texture of these meatballs! I made then to make the winter rolls, and also to pack for my daughter’s lunches… the only issue I had was getting the meatballs to cook evenly, so I ended up browning them in the pan and then piling them into an oven-safe covered dish and cooking them in the oven for 20 minutes or so to get the internal temperature high enough without over-cooking the outsides…. that worked great!
This was delicious! Made them today with ground chicken and the flavor is amazing. As some other people said, the meat was very runny so I ended up adding one egg and 3/4 cup breadcrumbs to firm it up. It was still runny and I couldn’t make them into meatballs but my plans was to bake them so I dropped large spoonfuls of meat on a baking sheet and baked them at 350°F for 25 minutes. They don’t look pretty but they taste amazing. This recipe is definitely going into my recipe book. Thank you!
Made these today very yummy. Served them over basmati rice and topped with Asian greens sautéed in soy sauce, sweet chilli sauce and garlic
Good food but the recipe is tricky. I added about 50% more mince because te mixture was way to wet.
Instead of “one small onion” it would be better to define the amount of onion by weight.
The flavors were great, but I think the texture needed something (an egg?) to hold them together. I tried to make meatball skewers to BBQ and they fell completely apart on the grill and I had to finish cooking the crumbles in a skillet. I will try this recipe again but will add either an egg and/or some type of crumb (panko, bread, or crushed Rice Krispies). We served with rice and broccoli.
Amazing recipe! I’ve made it three times so far and each time we all love it. The only difference is the addition of a chilli which I added two times but this was great even without.
Spicy makes everything better!!
They look delicious! Can you cook in air fryer?
I’ve never tried it. If you’ve successfully cooked other meatballs in your air fryer then I would think this would work, too. I would use caution though if yours has a paddle in it. From my experience, the air fryers with the paddles make a mess of many recipes and it may end up crumbling the meatballs.
What a fantastic recipe! I served these on lemongrass “skewers” – I tried it grilled and then made them for a dinner party baked at 450 – fantastic. I served them with a plum sauce and everyone enjoyed.
That’s such a great serving idea! I’m going to have to remember that one!
This recipe is fantastic! So flavorful and great, authentic Vietnamese flavors.
I made these and they were lovely but I had to add flour as they were too wet. I was unsure whether or not to add the oil to the mix and I did in the end as thought it would otherwise say add all other ingredients except oil? can you advise please?
Yes they are very moist meatballs! The oil is added to the pan to cook them. 🙂
What do you think of baking them??
I think it would work!
Made this over the weekend for a healthy potluck and they were demolished. I used 2 lbs lean beef and 1 lb ground pork. With everything else added it made about 50 meatballs using a medium size baking scoop. The taste is truly amazing and I will be making these very often. I also made a sauce with Greek yogurt, sriracha, lime zest and lime juice which was also very good.
Love the sound of that sauce you made!!
So good!! ? Made them today and this will bee one of my “make again” recipes!
I live in the south of Sweden, this is a good substitute too the swedish ones ?
Tack så mycket ?
I’m so happy they were a hit! Hooray!
Just made these for dinner. They were so delicious and moist. Will definitely be making them again. Thanks for sharing this wonderful recipe. ?
I’m so happy you liked the recipe!
Wow! I just finished making these and they really are amazeballs!! Ive never used lemongrass but have always loved the flavour so Im super excited about these. Thanks for another awesome recipe!
Yaaa! You are so welcome!!!
Would these be good in soup?
I think they would be great in an Asian style soup!
What is the white sauce he meatballs are being dipped in as seen in the photo?
That’s just a little mayo with some sriracha. 🙂
I have lemongrass in a tube that is already processed how much of that would I mix with the other ingredients to equal the amount of fresh lemongrass?
I would guess about 1 1/2 tablespoons. 🙂
OMG i’ve just did it tonight and it was just amazing. Meat balls are so tenders and full of flavors, I could eat it every single day. Did it with some sticky rice and stir fried veggies and it was heaven on hearth.
Thanks for this amazing recipe, I already know I gonna do it again and again
That makes me so happy to hear! Hooray!!
Just made these but the mixture was so liquid-y after adding all ingredients. I added another pound of meat. I also had about a cup of fresh soft bread crumbs so I added that too. Put mixture into fridge for an hour to firm up. They were still difficult to roll into balls but manageable. They taste delicious but I’m sure not as good as they would be if the spices were full strength. Not sure what went wrong?
I’m not sure either. They are definitely really soft (and not that easy to roll) but that’s why they are so tender when cooked.
OH MY GOSH!! THESE ARE DELICIOUS! I just made them for my boyfriend and myself for dinner and we give them 5 stars. I upped the cilantro because it’s one of our favorite flavors, and subbed franks buffalo sauce for sriracha because I forgot it at the store. Served over white rice with steamed asparagus. I used venison that I harvested and processed myself last year. AMAZING!!
We are having a Vietnamese dessert I found online as well: breaded, fried bananas with coconut ice cream. Pardon me… I must get back to the kitchen!
Yaaa! I’m so happy you liked them! Also, breaded and fried bananas with coconut ice cream sounds AMAZING!!!!
The dessert was delicious too! Here’s the recipe: http://www.cooktube.in/recipe/chuoi-chien-vietnamese-fried-bananas/
Thank you so much for sending me that! Those bananas look AMAZING! They’re on my must make list now. 🙂
Sounds delicious, I was wondering if I may substitute the lemongrass for something else as I live in Costa Rica and have not seen lemongrass in here since I moved a year ago. Thanks!
Lemongrass has such a unique flavor that it’s hard to find an alternative. What you could do is use some lemon zest and add some extra ginger. It wouldn’t be exactly the same, but you’d be on the right track.
BTW where in Costa Rica are you living? I have a family friend who lives in Puerto Viejo and has a restaurant called Chili Rojo. If you’re nearby, you should go. It’s an awesome restaurant. If you do, tell Andy I say hi!
I made these Meatballs…and they were delicious. It was quickly devoured by my family. Thank you for sharing such an easy recipe full of authentic Vietnamese flavors.
Hooray! I’m so happy you enjoyed the recipe!!
These meatballs are absolutely delicious!!
Aren’t they? So happy to hear you like them, too!!
Hi! These look so yummy! Was just wondering if these would be make ahead friendly? Would it be good to roll out a bunch and cook and freeze? Or freeze raw, thaw and cook?
You definitely can! I have a bunch in my freezer right now. I’ve frozen them raw to be thawed then cooked. You could also partially cook them first, which would help them keep their shape better as they unthaw. Hope that helps!
These look delicious, I found them off a link from your banh mi noodle bowl recipe, which is a can do!
Thank you so much. Great site and beautiful pictures.
Thank you so much, Elizabeth!
I love meatballs and I love these amazing combination of lemongrass and ground pork. Definitely a must have for my banh mi! Beautiful photography!! So glad to stumble upon your page!
Thank you so much!!! 🙂
Amaze-balls is right!! Loving all the flavors going on in these heavenly balls! I seriously just want to face plant into a bowl full of these golden brown beauties! Pinned! Cheers to a beautiful weekend!
Hope you have a great weekend, too!! 🙂
Wow-wee do these look amazing! They take me back to our wonderful Vietnam holiday a few years ago. I adore Vietnamese cuisine so will most definitely be making these, and eagerly awaiting your Banh Mi as well! Yummo 🙂