Thanksgiving recipes from US Coast Guard chefs

The old phrase goes, an Army runs on its stomach. Same goes for the US Coast Guard, and for this holiday, Coast Guard cooks are sharing their favorite recipes with the public this week.

Petty Officer 1st class James Mitchell works as a food service specialist. People who work those jobs can be found in every duty station available throughout the US and overseas, on every Coast Guard cutter, from harbor tugs to sea-going icebreakers.

“I am a special command aide to Coast Guard Rear Admiral Keith Smith, director of Joint Interagency Task Force West here in Honolulu. My duties include a variety of assignments such a serving in the flag officer’s representational facility in order to create and maintain an environmental suitable for that flag officer to conduct business,” expands Petty Officer Mitchell.

He shared a tasty meatball recipe with us that he created (it involves bacon!) Find his recipe and all other Coast Guard recipes at

Petty Officer 1st Class James Mitchell’s Autumn harvest stuffed turkey meatballs recipe:

Serves: Approximately 20-25 1 ounce size


  • 1lb Ground Turkey
  • 4oz Camembert cheese-Chopped(as best you can)
  • 4 slices cooked bacon chopped finely
  • 1/3 cup chopped chives + some reserved.
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Apple Butter


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Mix all ingredients (less apple butter) together thoroughly in a large bowl, reserving some chives for garnish.
  3. Portion the mixture into tablespoon-sized portions, rolling each into a ball.
  4. Prepare a sheet pan with a light coating of oil. Space the meatballs evenly on the pan, noting that they will shrink slightly once cooked.
    Party Tip: If you are preparing them for a future event you can wrap them tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate or freeze until your party
  5. Place meatballs in the pre-heated oven for 12-15 minutes. If cooking from frozen, you may want to add a few more minutes to the time.
    Note: To add some extra texture to the exterior of the meatballs, switch the oven to broil feature in the last few minutes of cooking time. Keep a watchful eye to avoid burning!
  6. Remove the meatballs when they are golden brown.
    Party Tip: You can hold them in a warm oven above 140 degrees for 4 hours. If you have your party later, simply let them cool on the counter and refrigerate. Just reheat to 165 degrees for at least 15 seconds prior to serving.
  7. When ready to serve, garnish meatballs with a brush of apple butter and dusting of fresh chives.
    Party Tip: Dress the meatballs up with a nice platter, including toothpicks in a container for easy access.

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