I will never tire of zucchini. It’s 100% my spirit vegetable (is that a thing?). I am constantly dreaming up ways to incorporate zucchini noodles into unexpected places and since I always prefer to start my mornings with savory protein and healthy-fat rich breakfasts with a peekaboo of veggies, this frittata is the perfect weekend breakfast option or even better, it makes for an impressive brunch offering. But also let’s be real, if you are like me and you love the occasional breakfast for dinner, this just nails it!
I feel so fortunate that living in California we are gifted with year round beautiful weather which also means we are surrounded by local farmers and in turn we are blessed with the abundance of offerings so easily at our disposable. But, I am also keenly aware that this isn’t the case for all. Access to locally sourced meat and eggs can be a challenge and while it’s becoming far more prevalent that local grocers, even the big guys, are stocking grass-fed meats and pasture-raised eggs, I often see these foods coming from other countries. This is a fine option and it’s far, far better then conventionally raised, factory farmed meats from here in the US, but I would always love to be supporting the farmers here in our country, working so hard for change.
When Butcher Box appeared on my radar, I was so very excited to learn that they are doing exactly this, supporting a collective of small American farmers.
Their beef is the real deal, exactly the way nature intended – 100% grass-fed and grass finished, antibiotic and hormone free, and never taken from feedlots – Just 100% healthy meat! By purchasing their meats in large quantities direct from the farmers, they are able to pass the savings on to the consumer with their monthly boxes. Fun fact, Butcher Box actually flew out to farms and taste-tested every cut of meat from every farmer. So you can trust, if they didn’t love it, you won’t get it. Butcher Box offers free 2 – 5 day delivery to the contiguous 48 states. The meat is flash frozen at the peak of freshness, packed with dry ice, and shipped directly to your door each month. What the what? You heard right! Grass fed meat right on your door step.
I have been working my way through the first box and enjoying every cut, it’s been such a treat. We opted for the box that features beef, pork and chicken and we have had some amazing meals. While I know ground beef isn’t necessary a fancy, show-off style meat, I also know that if we are talking ’bout real life and what’s common in most of our kitchen, that’d be it. I also know that as simple as ground beef is, I feel like that’s a great gauge of quality. I have bought the grocery store grass-fed beefs, that come from farms in Uruguay and New Zealand, or wherever they are from. The meat is fine. It’s a great option. But it’s never as good and if I am being totally honest, from a ethical standpoint, I know I am not helping to make a change here at home. I am not supporting the farmers here in the US working hard for change!
Zucchini Noodle and Meatball Frittata
- 8 ounces grass-fed beef, We got ours from Butcher Box
- 1 teaspoon dried parsley or 1 tablespoon fresh
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano or 1 tablespoon fresh
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- 2 tablespoons olive oil or ghee
- 8 pasture-raised eggs
- 2 tablespoons roughly chopped fresh basil, plus more for garnish
- pinch or two or red pepper flakes, optional, plus more for garnish
- 2 tablespoons olive oil or ghee
- 1 small yellow onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 8 ounces cremini mushrooms, sliced
- 2 small/medium zucchini, spiralized (I use the Inspiralizer set on D)
- 1 ½ cups warm marinara or spaghetti sauce, optional
- grated Parmesan or Romano cheese, optional
- Preheat oven to 400ºF.
- In a medium-sized mixing bowl, add all of the ingredients for the meatballs and mix together with your hands. Don't over work the meat. Roll into smaller than usual meatballs, around 1-inch, or so.
- Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil or ghee in a large, heavy-bottomed, oven-safe skillet over medium heat (I like to use one pan for the whole recipe, so I opt for my cast iron). Working in batches and adding more oil as necessary, cook the meatballs until browned on all sides, about 5 to 7 minutes. They don't need to be cooked through, as they will continue to cook in the frittata. Set the cooked meatballs aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs with a small pinch of salt, red pepper flakes and basil. Set aside.
- If there is still oil in the pan from the meatballs, no need to add more, if there isn't add more olive oil or ghee, as needed. Still over a medium heat, add the onion and mushrooms sauté about 6-8 minutes until the onion is translucent and the mushrooms softened. Add the garlic and sauté another 2 minutes, being careful not to burn it.
- Add the zucchini noodles and cook them quickly, tossing around in the pan to mix with the other ingredients, give them just a minute or two. Pour the eggs over the veggies and give it all a really quick stir to combine. Add the meatballs back in, I like to strategically place them throughout, so everyone will get some. Cook over a medium-low heat for about 5 minutes or until the eggs are just set and there isn’t a lot of liquid running around the pan. To do this, run a spatula underneath the sides of the frittata and tilt the pan so the uncooked eggs run to the underside and cook.
- Place the skillet in the center of your preheated oven. Allow to bake for 13-15 minutes, until it is golden brown, well set and puffy, be sure when you stick a knife through the center of the frittata, it comes out clean.
- Remove from oven with oven mitts and let cool for several minutes, cut into wedges and serve, topped with warmed marinara, fresh basil, red pepper flakes and grated cheese, if you like.
Financial compensation was not received for this post. Sample product was gifted from Butcher Box. Opinions expressed here are my own.