Go Back
+ servings

Spicy Tunisian Beef Meatballs Recipe

Spicy Tunisian beef meatballs are loaded with herbs and spices, browned to perfection, and simmered in a sensationally bold coconut sauce.
Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time25 minutes
Total Time40 minutes
Course: main dishes
Cuisine: North African
Servings: 4
Author: Kevin



  • Combine ground meat, garam masala, half of the shallots, half of the garlic, ½ cup cilantro, 1 teaspoon kosher salt and black pepper in a large bowl. Mix until just combined. Divide and roll into 12 balls.
  • Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Cook meatballs, turning occasionally, until browned all over, 6–8 minutes. Transfer to a plate.
  • Reduce heat to medium. Saute remaining shallots and garlic with remaining 2 tablespoons oil in skillet, stirring often, until garlic is softened, about 2 minutes. Stir in harissa paste, coconut milk, and 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt. Bring to a simmer, reduce heat to low, and cook until slightly thickened, 6–8 minutes.
  • Nestle meatballs into sauce; cover and cook 10 minutes. Turn meatballs over; cook, uncovered, occasionally spooning sauce over, until sauce is about the consistency of marinara, 8–10 minutes.
  • Serve meatballs over steamed rice topped with the sauce. Scatter cilantro leaves over.


Use 1/4 cup if you think the 1/3 cup harissa will be too spicy, but do give this a try. The flavor combination is incredible!
Adapted from Sahara Bohoskey, Bon Appetit.


Calories: 547kcal | Carbohydrates: 13g | Protein: 23g | Fat: 38g | Saturated Fat: 29g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 11g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 81mg | Sodium: 1271mg | Potassium: 708mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 291IU | Vitamin C: 9mg | Calcium: 53mg | Iron: 4mg