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This Gluten Free Slow Cooker Turkey Meatball Curry is a great budget meal which the whole family will love.
Packed with flavour, the turkey meatballs slow cook in a tomato and coconut sauce with the flavours of chilli, turmeric, ginger, garlic and fenugreek.
This easy meatball curry is a great recipe when you're short on preparation time and is gluten free, dairy free and 100% coeliac safe.
You can swap the turkey meatballs for beef if you prefer but I love the flavour of using turkey, and it keeps the recipe a bit lighter too.
If you're a fan of my slow cooker chickpea and potato curry you'll love this - it's basically a meat version of that with a few tweaks!
Cooking this turkey meatball curry in the slow cooker helps to save money and means you can throw it in and come home after work to find dinner ready.
If you don't have a slow cooker, check out the blog post below as I have suggestions for cooking this curry on a hob or in the oven too.
Ingredients and Substitutions
There's a full recipe card below with the quantities and instructions, but here are the main ingredients and ideas for any substitutions:
- Turkey Meatballs - Most meatballs in UK supermarkets are gluten free but ALWAYS double check to make sure yours are! I used the Asda Turkey Meatballs but you could use chicken or beef if you prefer.
- Onion - A white or brown onion is all you need but you can use a red onion if you prefer.
- Garlic - You have a few options here. Use garlic cloves and peel then finely chop or crush them. You can also use a garlic paste or frozen chopped garlic too.
- Ginger Paste - I am lazy so find the pastes easier but again you can use frozen, chopped ginger instead. Or peel a thumb-sized piece of ginger and then grate or finely chop it.
- Chopped Tinned Tomatoes - Chopped fresh tomatoes will also work (perfect if you have a glut from the garden!) but remove any stalks first. Whole tinned tomatoes will also work or you can chop them yourself before adding.
- Tomato Puree - I find this just adds a great colour and depth of flavour to the dish.
- Full Fat Coconut Milk - I always use full fat coconut milk in tins as I find this gives the best flavour in curries. A reduced fat coconut milk will work but you may find the curry has a runnier consistency. If you can't have coconut but can tolerate dairy you could use double cream instead for a richer curry, but I'd probably add this at the same time as the spinach in the recipe.
FOR THE SPICE MIX:
The spice mix for this slow cooker turkey meatball is a variation of the simple spices in my slow cooker chickpea and potato curry.
You guys loved that recipe so much I thought it would be great to do a meat version!
I use a mixture of salt, turmeric, chilli powder and garam masala for this dish.
I've also added fenugreek leaves in this recipe as they are one of my favourite ingredients in curry - they have the best flavour!
Which slow cooker do you use?
I use a Crockpot 3.7-litre slow cooker I was gifted from a family member - I think this is the newer model of mine.
I know a lot of people are worried about the cost of living and looking for cheaper alternative to turning on the gas or electric oven.
The good news is slow cookers are actually pretty efficient to run!
I've done a bit of research online and it looks like a slow cooker costs roughly 16p a day to run, compared to 87p a day for an electric cooker.
What if I don't have a slow cooker?
If you don't have a slow cooker you can make this gluten free turkey meatball curry in the oven or on the hob.
Simply brown the meatballs as per the recipe, but then add the onions, garlic and ginger paste and cook for a further 5-10 minutes.
Add the spice mix and the rest of the ingredients and then use the following instructions:
For the hob, cover with a lid and cook on a low/med simmer for around 30-40 minutes until the meatballs are cooked through.
For the oven I'd recommend cooking with a lid on at around 180C (Gas Mark 4) for around an hour.
But ultimately this recipe is made for the slow cooker so I'd definitely recommend it as the best and most efficient way to make it!
My slow cooker turkey meatball curry recipe
This super simple recipe will have dinner for four people on the table with virtually zero effort at all.
I love making this recipe and if you want to change it up a bit you could try it with beef or chicken meatballs too.
And please do leave a review to let others know you loved it too! It would mean the world to me.
- 12 gluten free turkey meatballs
- 1 tsp coconut oil
- 1 onion
- 3 tsp chopped garlic
- 2 tsp ginger paste
- 1 tbsp tomato puree
- 1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes
- 1 x 200ml tin full-fat coconut milk
- 1 tbsp fenugreek leaves
For the spice mix:
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1 tsp chilli powder
- 2 tsp garam masala
- Fresh coriander (chopped)
- Melt the coconut oil in a frying pan over a medium heat. Add the turkey meatballs and cook for 4-5 minutes, moving them around the pan, to brown them all over. Remove from the heat and add to the slow cooker.
- Add the spices and the rest of the ingredients and the spice mix to the slow cooker and stir well. Cook on high for 4 hours or low for 6-7 hours.
- Serve with lashings of fresh coriander - you can also add some spoonfuls of yoghurt on top if it's too spicy for you!
- Any leftovers can be frozen for up to 3 months. I recommend doing this in portions for an easy meal when you need it.
- For suggestions to cook this on the hob or in the oven see the blog post above.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 275Total Fat: 18gSaturated Fat: 12gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 31mgSodium: 976mgCarbohydrates: 22gFiber: 5gSugar: 8gProtein: 11g
Need more slow cooker recipe inspiration?
Here are some more gluten free slow cooker recipes you can try out once you've made this Gluten Free Turkey Meatball Curry.
- Slow Cooker Beef Goulash
- Harissa Chicken with Chorizo
- Slow Cooker Pulled Pork
- Chickpea and Potato Curry
If you have any recipe suggestions, please let me know in the comments what you’d like to see next!
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