These Sticky Ginger Scallion meatballs are just the right amount of sweet and spicy. These Asian inspired meatballs are so easy to make and full of ginger sesame flavor. This recipe is gluten free, Whole30 compliant, and Paleo friendly!

Sticky Ginger Scallion Meatballs

What’s better than a meatball, you ask?

A tender, juicy, and super flavorful ginger scallion meatball swimming in a sticky sauce. That’s what.

These healthy sticky ginger scallion meatballs are packed with flavor from fresh ginger, scallions, cilantro, and garlic. Then, they are coated in a sweet and sticky sauce that is so simple to make and does not have any added sugar.

Watch How to Make This Recipe

Not only are they delicious, these meatballs are so easy to whip up. They are perfect for a quick weeknight dinner or fun appetize.

Also, they are baked, which means there is no need to stand over the stove cooking each meatball until perfect. Just place them on a sheet pan, bake for fifteen to twenty minutes, and you’re done. I’m telling you they are the best.

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ground beef, ginger, scallions, and cilantro in a glass mixing bowl

Simple Meatball Ingredients

Note: full ingredients list & measurements provided in the Recipe Card, below.

These ginger scallion meatballs get their name from plenty of fresh ginger and scallions. They are full of flavor and made with just a few simple ingredients that you likely already have on hand.

Ground Beef: For the best results, use a leaner ground beef like 85/15 or 90/10. If you do not like beef, you could substitute ground pork, ground turkey, or ground pork instead.

Ginger: These meatballs get their name from a generous amount of freshly minced ginger. It adds such a great flavor.

Garlic: A few large cloves, finely minced, are all you need.

Scallions: Scallions, also called green onion, are milder than regular onion but still give you that onion-y flavor. Slice them thinly for the best results.

Cilantro: Adds a bright freshness to the meatballs.

Sesame Oil: Sesame oil is common in Asian cooking and is made from sesame seeds.

Rice Vinegar: Adds little brightness and helps to amplify the flavor.

Red Pepper Flakes: These are completely optional, but if you like a little heat feel free to add them. A little goes a long way.

sticky meatball sauce

Ingredients For The Sweet And Sticky Sauce

The base of the sweet and sticky sauce coating these meatballs is coconut aminos. Coconut aminos are a common substitute for soy sauce and are made from the sap of the coconut tree.

Coconut aminos are naturally much sweeter than soy sauce. They give the sauce a sweet flavor that works really well with the meatballs.

The rest of the sauce ingredients include sesame oil, a little lime juice, tomato paste (works so well with the flavor of the beef), and arrowroot starch.

Arrowroot starch is a natural thickening agent that works the same way as cornstarch. A little goes a long way to thicken the sauce. Arrowroot starch starts to lose its thickening quality the longer it is heated which is why it is added at the end of making the sauce.

How To Make Ginger Scallion Meatballs

Note: full ingredients list & measurements provided in the Recipe Card, below.

Step One: First, make the meatballs by adding the ground beef, ginger, garlic, cilantro, scallions, salt, red pepper flakes, rice vinegar, and sesame oil to a mixing bowl. Use your hands to work all of the ingredients together until well combined.

Step Two: Next form the meatballs. Scoop the meat mixture using a tablespoon sized cookie dough scoop or tablespoon measure. Then, use your hands to roll the meat mixture into meatballs.

Place the meatballs on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake them at 400 degrees for 15-20 minutes until cooked through.

Step Three: While the meatballs are cooking make the sauce. To do this, add the coconut aminos, sesame oil, lime juice, tomato paste, and red pepper flakes to a small saucepan. Bring the sauce to a simmer over medium heat.

Once the sauce is simmering, reduce the heat to low. Next, thoroughly whisk in the arrowroot starch. The sauce should begin to thicken instantly. Let the sauce remain on low heat while the meatballs continue to cook.

meatballs in glass mixing bowl with sauce on top

Step Four: When the meatballs have finished cooking, transfer them to a mixing bowl or a shallow pan. Pour the sauce over the meatballs and use a spoon to gently toss the meatballs in the sauce until they are well coated.

Once the meatballs are coated in the sauce, garish them with sesame seeds and sliced green onion. Serve and enjoy!

What To Serve With Your Meatballs

If you are serving these meatballs for weeknight dinner, pair them with rice or cauliflower rice to make them a complete meal. Plus, the rice will help to soak up any extra sauce from the meatballs. You can also pair them with your favorite vegetable like green beans, zucchini, or broccoli.

If you are serving these meatballs as an appetizer or snack at a party, I suggest sticking a toothpick into each one before serving to make eating them easy.

Tips and Tricks

  • Finely mince the ginger and garlic before adding them to the ground beef. You do not want to bite into a huge piece of ginger or garlic when eating the meatballs.
  • Wet your hands before making the meatballs. This will help prevent the meat mixture from sticking to your hands and make the meatball making process easier.
  • Toss the meatballs gently in the sauce so you do not break them.
  • Do not forget to line your sheet pan with parchment paper before baking the meatballs. The meatballs will not stick to the pan and cleaning up will be easier.

Is Your Sauce Too Salty?

If you find that the sauce is too salty for you there may be a couple of ways to troubleshoot.

  • Be sure you are using coconut aminos NOT liquid aminos or soy sauce. Liquid aminos and soy sauce will not work in this recipe and will make the sauce too salty.
  • You may have over-cooked the sauce. Be sure to just warm the sauce through and bring it to a slight simmer. No need to boil the sauce or reduce it. The arrowroot starch will do all of the thickening for you.
  •  Reduce the salt in the meatballs. If you are particularly sensitive to salt, you can reduce the amount used in the meatballs to best suite your needs.

ginger scallion meatballs on brown parchment

More Delicious Recipes

I hope you give these Sticky Ginger Scallion Meatballs a try! They are so easy to make and delicious! If you do give this recipe a try, let me know! 

Leave a comment with a star rating below. You can also snap a photo & tag @allthehealthythings on INSTAGRAM. Your reviews and ratings help support All the Healthy Things and make it possible for me to continue to create the recipes you trust and love.

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meatballs in glass mixing bowl with sauce on top

Sticky Ginger Scallion Meatballs

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 4.8 from 48 reviews
  • Author: Ashlea Carver
  • Prep Time: 10 Min
  • Cook Time: 25 Min
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 4 Servings 1x
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: Asian Inspired
  • Diet: Gluten Free


Sticky Ginger Scallion meatballs that are just the right amount of sweet and spicy. These Asian inspired meatballs are so easy to make and full of ginger sesame flavor. This recipe is gluten free, Whole30 compliant, and Paleo friendly!



For the Meatballs

  • 1 ½ pounds ground beef
  • ½ tablespoon finely minced ginger
  • 4 cloves fresh garlic, finely minced
  • 2 tablespoons sliced scallion
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon rice vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon cilantro

For the Sauce:

  • ¾ cup coconut aminos
  • ½ tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon lime juice
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 1 ½ teaspoon arrowroot starch


  1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Add the meatball ingredients to a small mixing bowl and use your hands to mix until well combined. Next, use a cookie dough scoop or tablespoon measure to scoop out the meat mixture. Use your hands to form the ground beef into meatballs.
  3. Place the meatballs on a sheet pan lined with parchment paper and drizzle with a little olive oil. Bake them at 400 degrees for 15-20 minutes until cooked through.
  4. While the meatballs are cooking, make the sweet and sticky sauce. Add the coconut aminos, tomato paste, sesame oil, lime juice, and red pepper flakes (if using). Bring the sauce to a simmer over medium heat. Once the sauce is simmering, turn the heat down to low and whisk in 1 ½ teaspoons of arrowroot starch. Leave the sauce on low heat while the meatballs continue to cook.
  5. When the meatballs are done cooking, add them to a mixing bowl and pour the sauce over them. Gently toss them in the sauce until they are well coated. Transfer the meatballs and sauce to a serving dish and garnish them with green onions and sesame seeds. Enjoy!

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  1. Been making these in my home for years! We rotated them out just to get in some new variety, and just the other day, my husband asked when I was planning to make “those Asian style meatballs from that food blogger in NC” again! Needless to say they’re on tonight’s menu. Hubby approved AND requested! We love them with some rice, quick pickled cucumber and vinegar slaw.

    1. Natalie Perkins (ATHT) says:

      That sounds so good, Jennifer! I’m so glad y’all love this one! Thanks for leaving a review !

  2. The meatballs were delicious! I used ground chicken and basil as i didn’t have cilantro. I agree with others that the sauce was very salty. That said, I used Teriyaki instead of the coconut aminos which I didn’t have. I thought it might be sweeter than soy but didn’t realize it had so much sodium. I added honey which seemed to help a little. Also for those who aren’t used to using starches, always mix with a liquid to make a slurry before adding or you will end up with lumps that don’t dissolve in the sauce. I will definitely make again with the exact ingredients!

  3. LOVED THESE! Amazing fresh flavor with the ginger. Will definitely keep these in the rotation!

  4. Heather G. says:

    This meal was absolutely amazing! The meatballs had so much flavor on their own and the sauce adds another layer of deliciousness! It was a hit for me and my husband and we will definitely make this again and again! It was an recipe to follow and very quick which is always great. Thank you Ashlea!

  5. Kayleigh M. says:

    I am planning on making these tonight! How big should each meatball be?

    1. Ashlea Carver says:

      Hi, Kayleigh! I mention in the instructions to use a 1 tablespoon measure or a cookie dough scoop of a similar size. Around 1 to 1 1/2 size should work!

  6. I loved this recipe as I do all of your recipes! I also love how this can be so easily adapted to be Whole 30 compliant! I used soy sauce this time and found it to be too salty, so next time will cut the salt if I sub soy sauce for coconut aminos. So good!!

  7. Mindy Leliaert says:

    This is my first time trying one of your recipes, and these were simple and delicious. My son-in law was recently diagnosed with Coeliacs Disease. He loved them. The family loved them. I will definitely be making these again.
    Thank you for the great recipe!!

  8. So easy and delicious!

    1. Ashlea Carver says:

      so happy you loved them, Amber!

  9. Love this recipe!! It has now become a regular staple in our house. It’s honestly the best and only way to eat meatballs now! 🙂 The flavour combination is incredible. Thank you!

  10. I made the Sticky Ginger Scallion Meatballs for dinner this week. Not only was the recipe easy to follow the meatballs were great!! I plan including this recipe into our dinner rotation.

    1. Natalie Perkins (ATHT) says:

      Yay! So happy to hear that it’s become a favorite for you, DeAnne! Thanks for sharing!