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Total Time

Prep: 15 min. Cook: 20 min.


10 cups

My Grandmother Trinidad loved making this albondigas recipe. We like to serve it over tostadas sprinkled with raw cabbage. —Wanda Knutson, Waco, Texas
Albondigas Recipe photo by Taste of Home


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1-1/2 cups tomato sauce, divided
  • 8 cups beef broth
  • 1-1/2 pounds lean ground beef (90% lean)
  • 1/3 cup uncooked long grain rice
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 tablespoon 2% milk
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/8 teaspoon saffron threads or 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 10 saltines, crushed
  • Optional: Tostadas, shredded cabbage and cilantro


  1. Heat Dutch oven over medium heat; add olive oil. Cook onion, garlic and ½ cup tomato sauce until onion is tender, 3-5 minutes. Add broth and ½ cup tomato sauce; bring to a simmer.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine ground beef, rice, egg, salt, pepper, milk, cumin, saffron, crushed crackers and remaining ½ cup tomato sauce, mixing lightly but thoroughly. With wet hands, form into 1-in. balls. Gently add meatballs to simmering broth; cook, stirring occasionally, 20-25 minutes. If desired, serve with tostadas and cabbage and garnish with cilantro.

Nutrition Facts

1-1/2 cups: 340 calories, 16g fat (5g saturated fat), 102mg cholesterol, 1931mg sodium, 20g carbohydrate (4g sugars, 2g fiber), 29g protein.

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