Creamy Thai Meatball Soup
Growing up in a small town in Alberta with grandparents that raised beef cattle, Scott and I both ate a fair amount of beef in our childhood. I remember eating pork chops & bacon occasionally, but not much more than that came from a pig.
As a adult, I'd cook a few different meals made with pork - sausages, bacon, and once in awhile, pulled pork from a pork shoulder.
When we started raising our own pigs back in 2017-18, we suddenly had a whole array of new-to-me pork selections to choose from! A new challenge was presented ... how do I cook all these pork selections and what do we make with them??
Let's talk ground pork.
Ground pork is the like the long-lost cousin of ground beef. As we started experimenting with ground pork, we discovered that it had SO much flavour and a lighter texture than ground beef. We started substituting ground pork for ground beef in all the same ways we'd use ground beef. Suddenly, tacos, meat loaf, meatballs, and casseroles took on a new flavour with the addition of ground pork!
Fast forward to today. We often choose ground pork over ground beef for many recipes. Other recipes, we'll use half ground pork and half ground beef. For the thai-inspired meatball soup, we choose ground pork. These little meatballs are delicious with the fresh ginger & garlic!
What to use ground pork for?
- stuffed jalapenos
- Swedish or Hawaiian meatballs
- chorizo pasta
- spaghetti sauce
- pork chili
- breakfast burritos
- breakfast sausage egg cups
- chili topped mac n' cheese
- rice bowls
- Bonny's apple pork burgers
- breakfast sausage patties
- pork fried rice
- pork wontons or potstickers
- egg roll in a bowl
- Po' Boy sandwiches with pork meatballs & garlic aioli
- lettuce wraps
Now, back to the recipe.
This Thai-inspired pork meatball soup is a great weeknight soup, especially if you make your meatballs ahead of time. Carve out some time on the weekend or one evening to prep a few things in advance for the week. Good things to make ahead include meatballs, ground meats, a roast in the slow cooker (for shredding), rice, hard-boiled eggs, and things like muffins, waffles, and bread that can be frozen.
Thai-Inspired Meatball Soup Recipe
- 2 lbs ground pork
- 3 to 4 green onions, diced small (green & white parts)
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons fresh ginger, minced
- 2 tablespoons soya sauce
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 tablespoon lard, bacon grease, butter, or olive oil
- 2 white onions, diced small
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 3 tablespoons red curry paste
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 6 cups bone broth (pork, beef or chicken) - recipe here
- 2 cans coconut milk (400 mL each) or 3 cups milk
- 100 to 150 grams instant noodles (crumbled or left long, depending on your preference)
Preheat oven to 350F. In a medium bowl, mix ground pork, green onions, garlic, ginger, soya sauce, and black pepper until well mixed. Using your hands, form into small meatballs and place on parchment lined cookie sheet. Bake for 25 to 40 minutes until cooked through. Remove from the oven. At this point, you can freeze or refrigerate the meatballs until ready to make soup.
To make soup, heat lard over medium heat in a large dutch oven (6 quart or so). Once melted and warm, add onions and saute until soft, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add garlic and saute for additional 2 to 3 minutes. Add curry paste and mix in with the onions and garlic. Add coconut milk slowly will mixing. Add honey and bone broth. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, then lower to a simmer.
Meanwhile, cook your noodles in a pot of boiling water. Once cooked and drained, add to your soup. Heat for a few minutes to heat through. Serve & enjoy!
A couple of add-ins you may want to try:
- consider adding sliced mushrooms to the dutch oven with your onions
- consider adding chopped spinach along with the noodles at the end
- consider topping with cilantro or juice of 1 lime at the end for an added zip
- spice things up by adding 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of crushed chili flakes