porcupine balls
| |

Porcupine Balls

porcupine balls

Porcupine balls are one of my husband’s favorite dishes. I got the recipe from his mom, who probably got it from The Mennonite Community Cookbook  or from someone else. When it came to me, it was hand-written, so who really knows where she found the recipe?

This recipe can be mixed ahead of time and shaped into the balls, then frozen and put into a freezer container. Then when you want to serve them, put them into a pan and allow to thaw for a few hours. So simple and easy. I’ve never met a child who didn’t like these porcupine balls. The rice hidden in these balls is what gives them the name, I think.

You’ll think you’re adding too much tomato juice, but by the time the rice has cooked in the hamburger, most of it will be absorbed. Then, by the time you allow the balls to sit for a few minutes, the juice will be gone.

porcupine balls
Pre-baking . I know, they don’t look so great. Trust me.
porcupine balls
The finished product – it tastes better than it looks.









porcupine balls

Porcupine Balls

My Windowsill
Balls made with hamburger and some rice as well as other seasonings. Bake for 90 minutes in tomato juice. Add your own seasonings
4 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 45 minutes
Course Main
Cuisine American
Servings 8


  • 1 pound hamburger
  • 4 slices bread
  • 1 egg beaten
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 medium-sized onions chopped
  • 2 sticks celery chopped
  • 1/4 cup uncooked rice
  • 1 quart tomato juice
  • garlic powder - optional
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  • Crumble bread and soak in milk
  • Add beaten egg
  • Mix all other ingredients (except tomato juice)
  • Shape into 8 balls and place in a greased casserole dish
  • Pour tomato juice over the balls
  • Bake for 90 minutes at 350

porcupine balls

Check out these other great posts!

Similar Posts


  1. 4 stars
    Bingo: Yes, porcupine balls are in Mennonite Community Cookbook, with exactly this recipe, right down to the instructions. Readers may be interested to know the names attached there–Mabel Lehman of Holsopple PA and Mrs. Reuben Eberly, Fayetteville Pa. My first introduction to these gems was as a voluntary service worker in Kentucky, our unit hostess made them. My mom never made meatballs. 🙂

  2. Thank you, Melodie. I should have checked that cookbook. I had no idea the wording was so exact. 😉

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating