Five-Spice Meatballs 
with Rice Noodles & Honey Lime Sauce

Baking these spiced meatballs on a rack allows the fat to drip away, which keeps them from sitting in their own juices and becoming greasy. For easy cleanup, line the baking sheet with foil to catch the drippings. Be gentle when mixing and shaping the meatballs – packing them tightly makes them too dense and tough.
Five-Spice Meatballs with Rice Noodles & Honey Lime Sauce image
  • Duration
  • Cook Time
  • Prep Time
  • 4Servings


  • 1 lb lean ground pork, 
chicken or turkey
  • 1 tbsp peeled and grated ginger
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 tsp Chinese five-spice powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 3 tbsp fresh lime juice
  • 2 tbsp plus 1 tsp raw honey
  • 2 tbsp reduced-sodium tamari
  • 4 tsp toasted sesame oil
  • 8 oz brown rice Pad Thai noodles 
(TRY: Annie Chun’s Pad Thai Brown Rice Noodles)
  • 2 cups matchstick-cut carrots
  • 5 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup packed fresh cilantro, roughly chopped or whole leaves
  • 4 tsp black sesame seeds


  1. Preheat oven to 350˚F. Arrange an ovenproof rack on a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet; mist with cooking spray.
  2. In a large bowl, stir together pork, ginger, garlic, five-spice powder, pepper and salt until combined. Shape into balls 2 tbsp in size, making about 20 meatballs. Arrange 1 inch apart on prepared rack. Bake, rotating baking sheet halfway through, until no longer pink inside and an instant-read thermometer reads 160˚F when inserted in center, 30 to 34 minutes. (NOTE: If using ground turkey or chicken, cook meatballs to an internal temperature of 165˚F.)
  3. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk together lime juice, honey, tamari and oil until combined. Set aside.
  4. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add noodles and cook, stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes. Stir in carrots and cook until tender-crisp and noodles are al dente, about 2 minutes. Drain and rinse under cold water. Return to pot and heat on medium-low. Add onions and lime juice mixture and cook, stirring, until heated through, 1 to 2 minutes.
  5. Divide noodle mixture and meatballs among bowls. Sprinkle with cilantro and seeds, dividing evenly.

Nutrition Information

  • Serving Size: 1 1/4 cups noodle mixture and 5 meatballs
  • Calories: 505
  • Carbohydrate Content: 67 g
  • Cholesterol Content: 72 mg
  • Fat Content: 13 g
  • Fiber Content: 7 g
  • Protein Content: 34 g
  • Saturated Fat Content: 3 g
  • Sodium Content: 34 mg
  • Sugar Content: 15 g
  • Polyunsaturated Fat Content: 3.5 g