Harissa Lamb Meatballs

These tasty harissa lamb meatballs are easily prepared in advance and can be reheated after cooking. Make it spicy or not, as you prefer, by adjusting or omitting the harissa.
You don’t need to have Rose Harissa, ordinary Harissa is fine. Or even just a pinch or two of chilli powder.



  • 500g minced lamb
  • 1 white onion finely grated (I usually blitz with the food processor)
  • 4 tbsp white breadcrumbs
  • 2 crushed garlic cloves
  • 2 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 1-2 tsp rose harissa to taste
  • 1 egg
  • salt and pepper


  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 crushed garlic cloves
  • 1 tbsp (or less if you prefer) Rose Harissa
  • Some thyme sprigs
  • 2-3 bay leaves
  • 2 tbsp tomato puree
  • 1 tin chopped tomatoes
  • 250ml vegetable stock
  • salt and pepper to season
  • Flat leaf parsley, chopped and added at the end to serve


  1. First, make the meatballs as these need to chill to keep their shape
  2. Add all the meatball ingredients to a bowl and mix with your hands till well mixed
  3. Now make golf ball sized meatballs and rest them in the fridge for about an hour.
  4. Make the sauce in a suitable pan.
  5. Cook off the onion till soft and translucent, probably taking about 15 minutes
  6. Add the garlic and harissa and cook these gently for a minute or two
  7. Add the everything else except the parsley and bring to a gentle simmer
  8. When the meatballs are ready you can either simmer them gently for 45-60 minutes in the sauce or put them in the oven in a suitable casserole for about the same time at say 160C fan.
  9. Stir in the chopped parsley just before serving
Serve the harissa lamb meatballs with couscous, salad or pitta bread. Some yoghurt on the side can be a nice cooling element.

I’ve made these a day in advance and just reheated them for 30-40 minutes in a low oven. Works very well.

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