Chilli Chipotle Meatballs

, from Issue #109. May, 2023
Photography by Olivia Galletly .
Chilli Chipotle Meatballs

Spicy, comforting and finished with a layer of gooey cheese! Delicious served with sour cream and guacamole. 

Serves: 5-6


2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small red onion, finely diced
1 red capsicum, diced
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 tablespoon ground cumin
2 teaspoons cumin seeds
2 teaspoons ground coriander
2 teaspoons smoked paprika
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 medium red chilli, diced
2 x 400-gram tins pureed tomatoes 
400-gram tin red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
4 tablespoons chipotle chilli sauce (I used La Morena) 
4 tablespoons brown sugar 
sea salt and cracked pepper 

3 slices bread, crusts removed 
⅓ cup milk 
200 grams raw or cured chorizo sausage, roughly chopped 
3 cloves garlic, chopped 450 grams beef mince 
2 tablespoons chipotle chilli sauce 
1 teaspoon dried oregano 
2 teaspoons ground cumin 
1 teaspoon ground coriander 
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon 
sea salt and cracked pepper 
150 grams grated mozzarella 

To Serve
sour cream
tortilla chips or rice 


In a heavy-based casserole dish, heat the oil over a moderate heat. Add the onion and capsicum and fry for a few minutes until softened. Add the garlic, dried spices and chilli and fry until aromatic. Add the tinned tomatoes, red kidney beans, chipotle sauce and brown sugar and gently simmer for 30 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. 

MEATBALLS: While the sauce is cooking, start on the meatballs. Tear the bread into small pieces and place in a bowl with the milk, set aside for 10 minutes. 

Put the chorizo sausage and garlic in a food processor and blitz until finely ground. Add the bread and blitz again until no lumps remain. Spoon the mixture into a large bowl along with the beef mince, chipotle sauce, dried oregano and spices. Season with salt and pepper and combine well. 

Roll the meat into tablespoon-sized balls and place on a tray. 

Preheat the oven to 190°C regular bake. 

Heat oil in a non-stick frying pan. Fry the meatballs in batches until golden on all sides, the meatballs don’t need to be cooked through at this stage. 

Place the meatballs into the sauce and bake for 20 minutes. Top with the cheese and grill for 5 minutes or until the cheese has melted and is golden brown.