Banh Mi With Cilantro Lamb Meatballs

Banh Mi with Cilantro Lamb Meatballs
Grilled Cheese Social
  • Total: 45 mins
  • Prep: 15 mins
  • Cook: 30 mins
  • Yield: 3 servings

 This recipe spin on a banh mi sandwich features herbaceous lamb meatballs, sriracha, kewpie mayo, herbs, and pickled vegetable. Are you a vegetarian? Try using a soft boiled egg or some pan-fried tofu. ​


  • For the Lamb Meatballs:
  • 1 lb. ground lamb
  • 1 tbsp. finely chopped onion
  • 2 tbsp. chopped cilantro
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tbsp. ground lemongrass
  • 1/4 tbsp. minced ginger
  • 1 egg
  • 3 tbsp. bread crumbs
  • 2 tbsp. all-purpose flour
  • 2 tbsp. oil for frying
  • For The Pickled Vegetables:
  • 6 slices of cucumber
  • 1 radish (chopped into matchsticks)
  • 1 baby carrot (chopped into matchsticks)
  • 1 tbsp. rice wine vinegar
  • 1 pinch sugar
  • For Each of The Sandwiches:
  • 1 5" chunk of french bread
  • 1 tbsp. kewpie mayo
  • 1/4 tbsp. sriracha
  • 3 to 5 meatballs (depending how large your baguette is)
  • A few mint leaves
  • All of the pickled vegetable
  • A few slices of pickled jalapeno
  • 1 tbsp. cilantro leaves

Steps to Make It

Note: while there are multiple steps to this recipe, this meatball dish is broken down into workable categories to help you better plan for preparation and cooking.

 Prepare the Lamb Meatballs

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Preheat oven to 400 F.

  3. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, mix lamb with chopped onion, cilantro, salt, lemongrass, ginger, egg, and bread crumbs together.

  4. When all the ingredients are incorporated, take about 1.5 tbsp of the lamb mixture and roll into little balls.

  5. When they are all rolled, add oil to a cast iron skillet and turn the heat to medium-high. Douse each meatball in flour and add to the hot oil—allowing the meatballs to brown on each side.

  6. Once they've got some color on them, place on a greased baking sheet and bake for about 20 minutes or until the center is no longer pink. 

Prepare the Pickled Vegetables

  1. ​In a small bowl, toss the cucumber, radish, and carrot with rice wine vinegar and sugar. Let sit for at least 10 minutes before using in sandwich. 

Prepare the Sandwiches

  1. Cut open the french bread and smear the inside with the kewpie mayo and sriracha. Add mint, meatballs, pickled vegetables, jalapeño, and cilantro. Serve immediately or wrap tightly in butcher paper and refrigerate.