Cookbook:Yuvarlak (Greek Meatballs)

Cookbook | Ingredients | Recipes | Cuisine of Turkey

Yuvarlak, yuvarlak köfte, or γιουβαρλάκια (youvarlakia), meaning round in Turkish, are a kind of large meatball in sauce. The meat mixture includes rice or bulgur. They are cooked in moist heat and the juices thickened with avgolemono. They are found in Turkish and Greek cuisine.


  • 1 kg (2.2 lbs) ground beef
  • 2 cups rice (short grained, suitable for soup)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 2 Tablespoons salt
  • 4 Tablespoons butter or margarine (substitute: 6 tablespoons olive oil)
  • juice from one lemon
  • pepper to taste
  • some white all-purpose flour


  1. Combine the ground beef with 1 egg, 1 cup of the rice, the salt and pepper.
  2. Mix thoroughly and form into meatballs the size of a ping-pong ball (4 cm).
  3. Cover each ball in a layer of white flour.
  4. In a large pot, sauté the diced onion in the butter/margarine or oil. Add 2 litres of water to the pot and bring to the boil.
  5. Drop each meatball in the boiling water.
  6. After 30 minutes, add the second cup of rice directly to the soup. Boil for 15 more minutes and get the pot off the heat.
  7. In a large bowl, beat one egg white (keep the yolk separate) and a little water into a foam (careful, grease or fat prevents foam from forming, and you end up with an unappetizing runny egg-white). To stabilize the foam add the juice of one lemon. Continue to whisk as you add the egg yolk. This is called "avgolemono" (egg and lemon) and is used to thicken soups (instead of heavy cream).
  8. Slowly pour one cup of the hot soup into the avgolemono while continuously whisking (so that the egg has a chance to warm up to the soup temperature, preventing it from becoming an omelette) and then pour the mixture into the pot, mixing it with the soup.

Serve hot.