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Best Easy Meatball Recipes

Best Easy Meatball Recipes

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Easy Meatball Shopping Tips

Most cattle are fed a diet of grass until they are sent to a feedlot – where they are finished on corn. When possible, choose beef from cattle that are “100% grass fed” - it will be more expensive, but better for your health.

Easy Meatball Cooking Tips

The method used to cook beef is dependent on the cut. Cuts that are more tender, like filet mignon, should be cooked for a relatively short amount of time over high heat by grilling or sautéing. While less tender cuts, like brisket and short ribs, should be cooked for a longer time with lower heat by braising or stewing.

Wine Pairing

Most red wines, including cabernet sauvignon, cabernet franc, syrah/shiraz, mourvèdre, Rhône blends, zinfandel, petite sirah, nero d'avola, and primitivo.


Step 1

Place rack in top third of oven preheat to 425°. Lightly brush a large rimmed baking sheet with oil. Using a sturdy wooden spoon, vigorously stir eggs, panko, milk, salt, garlic powder, several cranks of pepper, 1 oz. Parmesan, and remaining 2 Tbsp. oil in a medium bowl until nearly a smooth paste. Mix in one quarter of meat (combining just a small amount of meat in the beginning makes it easier to incorporate the rest without overmixing). Add remaining meat and mix well to thoroughly combine, but don’t overwork it. Using oiled hands, form into 8 large meatballs and place on prepared baking sheet.

Step 2

Bake meatballs until well browned underneath, about 15 minutes. Using a stiff metal spatula, pry up and turn over meatballs (they may want to stick a bit). Bake until browned on second side and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center of each one registers 160°, 5–7 minutes.

Step 3

Divide meatballs among plates and spoon some sauce over. Top with basil and more Parmesan.

How would you rate Weeknight Meatballs?

Freaking delicious. Easy to make & so flavorful. Well done, BA.

Amazing! My new go-to for a meatball recipe. So tender and tasty.

This is not JohnC this is his wife TinaC. My husband has made the best meatballs for the past 25-years, we have them every Christmas (it takes forever to make, I know I'm his su chef). When he found Chris' Weeknight Meatball Recipe and wanted to try it, I was skeptical. I am not skeptical now, they were easy to make and tastes GREAT! Thank you Chris!

Way too many breadcrumbs. Otherwise mostly tasty. I'll do 3/4 cup panko next time and see how that works

Made these for dinner and they were so easy and very delicious. Loved how straightforward the process was and the ingredients were minimalist. I made with all ground pork (that's what I had on hand) and they were so good- looking forward to trying with beef next time.

We love these meatballs- they are tender and tasty and are done so fast. I often use Impossible Burger and almond milk and they come out great too. The texture is best when the panko and milk really come together to form a panade, then it will combine with the meat and keep them tender and juicy.

Followed recipe exactly with leaner beef than called for and these still turned out super delicious, moist and not at all “bready” like some here are saying. Will make again!

Too much Panko breadcrumbs!. I will definitely make this again, but the meat to Panko ratio has to be higher.

These are prefect for when you have a craving and need meatballs immediately! I zhuzhed them up with red pepper flakes, twice as much garlic powder, and dried oregano. I also add about a cup of grated parmesan to give them a bit more of an umami kick. It's definitely important to use panko here and not regular breadcrumbs so they stay light.

Appreciated how quick and easy this recipe was however the first bite was pretty bland. Next time I would add fresh garlic and parsley to the meatballs and do only 1 cup of bread crumbs.

TERRIBLE! I am so embarrassed that I served these to my family. This recipe calls for nearly equal volume of meat and breadcrumbs. This should be called ɻread balls' instead of meatballs! I should have known something was wrong as soon as I put in the Panko, because it was so much! In good meatball recipes, the Panko is meant to add some texture and flavor, but should in no way constitute a significant portion of the meatballs. The silver lining of this experience - I learned a valuable lesson in recipe proportions.

LOVE! This recipe has become my go-to for meatballs. works great with turkey which I always seem to have in the freezer. My partner is constantly requesting them and since they're so easy, how can I say no? (I always use the BA's best spaghetti and meatballs recipe for sauce since that's always delicious and simple as well!)

Big hit tonight! Made these with some spaghetti and they were super easy to put together. I was suspicious of the amount of breadcrumbs, but my meatballs came together just fine and cooked well! Good texture and taste. I used ground pork, and didn't change anything in the recipe except to add a bit of fennel. Was worried the pork might be too salty as a sub for beef, but it was perfect!

The flavor is nice and the meatballs are tender, but like others have said -- they are way too bready.

How to make freezer meatballs + the best meatball recipe:

*This recipe is adapted from the Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book. I love this book. We use it all the time.

Add ground beef, chopped onions, breadcrumbs and seasonings into a large bowl and mix well.

Roll the mixture between your hands to shape into balls.

Heat olive oil over medium heat in a big skillet. Cook meatballs until brown and cooked through about 6-8 minutes on each side. I usually cook half the meatballs at a time. This recipe will yield about 40 meatballs.

Recipe Summary

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 cups finely chopped onion (from 1 large)
  • Kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic (4 to 5 cloves)
  • 1/2 teaspoon red-pepper flakes, plus more for serving
  • 2 cans (each 28 ounces) whole peeled tomatoes in juice, pureed in a blender or food processor
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing
  • 1 pound cremini mushrooms, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup dried breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup whole milk
  • 1/3 cup finely grated Pecorino Romano (1 ounce), plus more for serving
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves, plus more for serving
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh oregano
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 3/4 pound ground beef (85 percent lean), preferably grass-fed
  • 1 pound spaghetti, spaghettini, or bucatini

Red Sauce: Heat a straight-sided skillet over medium. Swirl in oil add onion and 1 teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is soft and translucent, 7 to 9 minutes. Stir in garlic and red-pepper flakes cook 30 seconds. Transfer one-third of onion mixture to a bowl and reserve for meatballs. Add tomatoes to skillet bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until reduced and thickened slightly, about 20 minutes.

Meatballs: While sauce simmers, heat a large skillet over medium-high. Swirl in oil. Add mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft and most of moisture has evaporated, 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer to bowl with reserved onion mixture let cool slightly.

Preheat broiler with rack 4 inches below heating element. Stir breadcrumbs and milk into mushroom mixture until milk is absorbed. Add cheese, parsley, oregano, egg, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Add beef and gently fold with your hands until evenly combined (don't overwork, or meatballs will be tough). Use an ice cream scoop, or roll heaping tablespoons between dampened palms, to form thirty 1 1/2-inch balls. Transfer to a rimmed baking sheet brushed with oil. Broil, undisturbed, until browned on top, about 5 minutes.

Transfer meatballs to skillet with red sauce. Simmer, stirring gently, until just cooked through, about 5 minutes. Meanwhile, boil pasta in a large pot of generously salted water until al dente, about 2 minutes less than per package instructions. Drain pasta and return to pot toss with 1 1/2 cups sauce. Serve, topped with meatballs, more sauce, cheese, red-pepper flakes, and parsley.

How to Make the Best Homemade Meatballs:

The best homemade meatballs are a simple combination of ground beef and pork, garlic, fresh parsley, eggs, Parmesan cheese, breadcrumbs, salt/pepper and a splash of milk. P.S. >Whole Foods and maybe other markets sell both ground beef and ground pork in bulk in their meat department… so you can just go in there and tell them you’d like exactly 3/4 pound of each.

Shape them into whatever size meatballs you’d like- tiny ones to go on pizza or regular-sized meatballs like these (you’ll get about 24). Then you pop them into the freezer for a few minutes, just to firm them up so they don’t fall apart when you cook them in a skillet.

The meatballs are quickly browned in a skillet before they’re added to marinara sauce to simmer and finish them off. You can use bottled marinara, or you can use my homemade marinara sauce recipe.

Then you are free to use your meatballs however you’d like! I hope that relative who so delicately pointed out that I have no meatballs on my site is happy now. I really should thank her for her feedback… because these meatballs are very, very good!

We do love to enjoy these Best Homemade Meatballs in a sub roll- it’s the ultimate comfort food, and it works out well for an easy weeknight meal. They’re also really good served over zucchini noodles!

In this cookbook, The Pioneer Woman shares a recipe for Rigatoni and Meatballs (sauce and all). These are just the meatballs here. Save this recipe because you’ll want to make them over and over again!

If you like this recipe, you might also enjoy my Beef Burrito Casserole or this Meatball Pizza for easy dinner ideas.

15 Slow Cooker Meatball Recipes for No-Fuss Dinners

Make these easy slow cooker meatball recipes for weeknight dinners or party appetizers. All you have to do is mix up the ingredients and your trusty slow cooker does the rest.

This saucy recipe calls for saltine crackers instead of standard breadcrumbs.

Get the recipe at Carlsbad Cravings.

Serve these meatballs alone as an appetizer or pair with rice for a filling main dish.

Get the recipe at Love to Be in the Kitchen.

If you love anything doused in Frank's RedHot sauce, get ready to love these chicken meatballs.

Get the recipe at Damn Delicious.

Make your meatballs healthier by swapping ground beef for ground turkey.

Get the recipe at Well Plated.

Tools you'll need: slow cooker ($30,

Craving meatballs and enchiladas? Made with spicy enchilada sauce and taco seasoning, these cheesy meatballs are calling your name.

Get the recipe at Tornadough Alli.

If sweet and spicy foods are your jam, these meatballs certainly live up to the hype.

Get the recipe at Chef Savvy.

Tools you'll need: meat baller ($7,

For an extra dose of flavor, be sure to top these meatballs with blue cheese dressing.

Get the recipe at The Creative Bite.

These meatballs will definitely be a crowd favorite, thanks to the flavorful Asian-inspired sauce made with honey, hoisin sauce, and soy sauce.

Get the recipe at Tornadough Alli.

You can't go wrong with these classic Italian-style meatballs that you can add to any pasta dish.

Get the recipe at Chef Savvy.

Try serving these Swedish meatballs over egg noodles&mdashit's the perfect dinner for a chilly winter night.

Get the recipe at Slow Cooker Gourmet.

Add cornflour or potato starch to thicken the teriyaki sauce, or use chili flakes to kick up the flavor a notch.

Get the recipe at My Food Story.

Perfect for tailgates on football Sundays, these 'balls pack a ton of flavor thanks to a blend of barbecue sauce, Worcestershire sauce, and paprika.

Easy Baked Parmesan Meatballs

⅓ cup Parmesan cheese, grated

¼ cup chopped fresh parsley (substitute 1 tablespoon parsley flakes)

Mix ingredients together just until blended shape into 12 meatballs.

Place on greased foil-covered rimmed baking sheet.

Bake 25 minutes or until internal temp 160 F.

It takes about the same amount of time to boil spaghetti noodles and warm up the pasta sauce as it does to bake the meatballs. (Photo: Daniel Higgins/USA TODAY NETWORK-Wisconsin)

TASTING NOTES: Ignoring the dryness due to my overcooking, the Parmesan flavor elevates the flavor beyond typical frozen versions. I substituted parsley with Italian seasoning that added another layer of flavor.

EQUIPMENT: Whisk or fork, mixing bowl, measuring cup and spoon, rimmed baking sheet and meat thermometer. Optional: knife or garlic press and kitchen scale.

PRACTICALITY RATING: 4. Knock that down to a 3 if you are willing to cheat by using minced garlic from a jar and readily stocked with fresh or dried parsley.

COST: $6-$7. Cost could exceed this estimation due to fluctuation in ground beef prices and choice of name brand or generic grated Parmesan cheese.

I waited the full 25 minutes before checking the temperature that resulted in overcooked meatballs. Lesson: Check meat temperatures sooner rather than later. (Photo: Daniel Higgins/USA TODAY NETWORK-Wisconsin)

HACKS/INSIGHTS: In my quest to figure how much Italian seasoning I needed as a substitute ingredient, I looked up the conversion of fresh to dry parsley. The answer came in teaspoon measurements, so I then searched for teaspoons in a ¼ cup. Then I converted that to tablespoons. My math told me to use 2 tablespoons of dry Italian seasoning. After dumping in 2 tablespoons, I saw Kraft listed the dry parsley substitution below the instructions as 1 tablespoon. There's your lesson at taking an extra minute to read through all instructions before you begin cooking.

Regardless of all the unnecessary math and internet searches, I liked the flavor from the pumped up dose of Italian seasoning. I did use a generic brand. A better seasoning blend might overpower the other flavors.

Math failed me a second time when I divided the total weight by 12 then measured each portion of meat mixture before rolling them into balls. I ended up with 13 meatballs. Maybe I should have rounded up.

More is better when it comes to meatballs but larger meatballs may have withstood the full 25-minute bake time.

My oven doesn't run overly hot and at 25 minutes internal temps reached 192 F. More than 30 degrees past done. That's your lesson in checking temperatures sooner — I'd say at 15 minutes — rather than later.

Despite a multitude of mistakes, these meatballs beat the frost off any frozen version I've tasted. Big Food again proves that it lines its packages with nearly indestructible recipes.

If making meatballs with spaghetti, the baking time is about the same as it takes to boil noodles and heat sauce. Time that would be needed to heat frozen meatballs. The only additional time needed to make homemade meatballs is a few minutes to mix ingredients together.

With a good base recipe, home cooks can customize meatballs to please their palates. Add some Italian sausage or red pepper flakes for an added burst of flavor.

I weighed each portion of meat to before forming into a meatball. It's a worthwhile extra step if you don't trust your eye. (Photo: Daniel Higgins/USA TODAY NETWORK-Wisconsin)

RecipeFact TruthSayer: You can make homemade meatballs if you possess the following skills:

  • Beat an egg
  • Measure and weigh ingredients
  • Mix ingredients together
  • Shape ground meat into meatballs
  • Tell time or set a timer
  • Read a thermometer
  • Operate an oven

Those are skills that could be mastered by a 10-year-old. (Provided there is some adult supervision while operating the oven.)

Our rating: True. If you can make hamburgers, you can make meatballs.

ABOUT THIS SERIES: I test recipes found on food packages in my very average kitchen with my moderately above average cooking talent and meh presentation skills. I'll provide some insights and basic cooking tips. If you don't find these stories useful, hopefully you find them entertaining.

The Best Homemade Meatballs Recipe

I have always loved meatballs especially eating them with some sort of pasta. Having these homemade always beats the store-bought ones because of their fresh taste. Not to mention the huge bonus of not having to thaw them after taking them out of the freezer.

To freeze them is not a problem because they are easy to store and easy to thaw. In addition, the recipe is incredibly easy to double or even triple so making larger batches to have for later is extremely simple.

This recipe reminds me of how my grandmother used to make them. She would always serve them with some kind of side salad and rice. I have also found that eating them with a side of mashed potatoes tastes wonderful. My grandmother will be proud when she finds out that I&rsquom making these at home.

38 Meatball Recipes for Any Occasion

Meatballs are highly underrated in their versatility. Name another protein that incorporates ground meat, vegetables, cheese — even beans — and can shape-shift in flavor depending on the sauce. Meatballs truly deliver it all.

Here are all of our meatball recipes in one place. We’ve got everything from pork to turkey meatballs, and every cooking method you could every need, plus some of our favorite ways to serve meatballs that aren’t over pasta.

Are you hungry for Carnivore Diet Recipes?

If you are following a zero-fiber, carnivore diet, the meal prep is even easier (one of the reasons I love the all meat concept). In this case, meatballs are all you need.

There is so much variety available! Read our list in What to Eat on a Carnivore Diet so you can start this diet right.

I have so many more delicious zero-fiber recipes to support your journey to better health, rapid fat loss, and auto-immune relief!

Check out The Carnivore Cookbook with over 100 recipes made from just the essentials: animal protein and fats.

I also have an entire collection of Carnivore-Friendly recipes here on the blog!


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