These are the best homemade meatballs. Learn how to make meatballs the authentic Italian way from ground beef. Easy and delicious!
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If you’re looking for a hearty, satisfying meal that is both good for you and delicious – these Homemade Meatballs are for you!
Made with simple ingredients, these are authentic Italian meatballs that are perfect on their own or delicious in a Sunday sauce.
Beef Meatballs Recipe
We grew up eating meatballs every week for Sunday dinner and it’s still something we enjoy. There’s something so comforting about tender, flavorful meatballs that have been cooking low in slow in sauce.
This is truly one of the best meatball recipes you’ll try!
What makes this the best meatball recipe?
These are truly the best meatballs. They’re loaded with flavor, simple to make, and just delicious!
- Easy to make: These meatballs use only 10 ingredients, most of which you probably already have in your fridge and pantry
- High Protein: with over 30g of protein per serving of 5 meatballs, these are a healthy high protein meal the whole family will love
- Perfect taste and texture: These meatballs are super flavorful and taste amazing. They have the perfect amount of herbs in them, and are fall apart tender!
Homemade Meatballs Recipe Ingredients
To make the best homemade meatballs you’ll need:
- ground beef
- bread crumbs
- onion and garlic
- grated parmesan cheese
- dried basil, dried parsley, dried oregano
- salt and pepper, red pepper flakes
You can find substitutions for all of these ingredients below in the green shaded substitutions box.
What is the best kind of meatball seasoning? The best kind of meatball seasoning is a mix of Italian herbs: basil, parsley, and oregano. We also add in a mix of bread crumbs and parmesan cheese.
How to Make Homemade Meatballs
Making meatballs is very easy!
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl until thoroughly combined.
- Form the meatballs by rolling into approximately 2 tablespoon balls and placing them on a baking sheet.
- Bake the meatballs on a parchment lined baking sheet for 10-15 minutes, then flip and bake for another 10-15 minutes on the other side.
How to make meatballs on the stovetop: You can easily make these meatballs on the stovetop. Heat a pan with olive oil. Add the meatballs to the pan and cook for 10-15 minutes, turning every 3 minutes until all sides are browned. This method is a lot more work, and much messier
How to make meatballs in the air fryer: To make meatballs in the air fryer. Air Fry at 400 for 12-15 minutes until golden brown, allow to cool + enjoy!
Meatball Recipe Easy Substitutions
Ground Beef: You can substitute ground beef with ground turkey or try our Turkey Meatballs. I haven’t tried these with ground chicken but I think it would work. Ground pork is usually a little too fatty on its own, but you can do 1/2 beef and 1/2 ground pork.
Egg: I haven’t tried making this recipe without an egg. I’m not sure if substitutions will work. If you try it let us know.
Bread Crumbs: You can substitute 1/2 cup of bread crumbs with 1/4 cup each: almond flour and coconut flour. This will also make the recipe gluten free. I haven’t tried making this with gluten free bread crumbs but I think it would work.
Parmesan Cheese: We don’t recommend substituting parmesan cheese. Other cheeses do not act the same as parmesan. It can be omitted but the flavor and texture of the meatballs will not be as good
Spices: You can substitute 1 teaspoon of dried spices with 1 tablespoon of fresh spices.
WW Points: The points for this recipe on blue plan are as follows: Ground Beef: 21SP (used 90/10) Bread Crumbs: 5SP, Parmesan Cheese: 6SP = 32SP for the batch. 8SP per serving of 5 meatballs. You could sub ground beef for turkey to reduce the points.
Is it better to bake or fry homemade meatballs?
The best way to cook meatballs is on a baking sheet in the oven. We like to cook our meatballs in the oven because it’s:
- easier to clean up – When you’re done with baking you can just toss the parchment paper and rinse your baking sheet
- better for you/healthier– Baking your meatballs allows a lot of the fat to drain off of them compared to frying them which adds extra calories from the oil
How Long to Bake Meatballs at 375
Meatballs should be baked at 375 for about 25-30 minutes. It’s best to flip the meatballs halfway through cooking to make sure they get evenly browned.
What temperature should meatballs be at? (when cooked) Meatballs should be cooked at 375 degrees. The internal temperature of meatballs should be 160 when cooked.
What is the secret to making the best meatballs?
There are a few tips for making the best meatball recipe. We’ve been making them for years and here’s what we’d recommend:
Don’t over mix the meatball batter: You can mix these with a stand mixer, but we recommend mixing by hand. Mix until the batter is combined.. don’t overdo it!
Cook the meatballs in sauce after baking them. These meatballs are delicious on their own, but so yummy when you let them cook low and slow in a pot of sauce. The sauce makes them SO tender.
Make a full batch or double batch and freeze some of these easy meatballs. It will make your life SO much easier. These freeze perfectly in a freezer bag, like stasher bag, and then you can just defrost them as you need them!
Pro Tip: Use a large cookie scoop for forming ‘balls’ for even, equal meatballs!
What goes well with meatballs?
These meatballs go well with pretty much anything. Here are some ideas for how to serve them:
- With Tomato Sauce – This meatball recipe best if served with sauce. Our crockpot tomato sauce recipe is foolproof and delicious!
- Over pasta – Any pasta will work, but we love this Homemade Ricotta Cavatelli
- Over zoodles (zucchini noodles)– If you don’t have a spiralizer you have to get one! As much as I love eating a bowl of pasta – it’s nice to have a lighter alternative and a spiralizer is key for getting through Whole30. The zucchini noodles are a great swap when you’re craving pasta. They are also great if you are gluten free or paleo.
- Over a salad – I’ll often have a bowl of meatballs with a side salad. This Spinach Strawberry Salad is great, but I also like this Traditional Greek Salad
How do you store Easy Meatballs?
How long will meatballs last? These Italian meatballs will last for up to 4 days in the refrigerator. Store them in an airtight container.
Do they freeze well? Yes, this homemade meatball recipe freezes so well.
I like to double the batch and freeze half of them after they have been baked in these bags.
Then you can quickly defrost for busy nights or simple lunch! When you’re ready to eat you can microwave them or heat them in a pan!
You can freeze them raw, but we don’t recommend it.
FAQ for Ground Beef Meatballs
If your meatballs are crumbling they might need more moisture. Try adding in another egg or a splash of milk. Meatballs crumbling could also be from not having enough fat if you use lean ground beef or ground turkey.
Making meatballs is a pretty quick process. It takes about 5-10 minutes to mix/roll the batter and then they cook for 20-25 minutes.
You’ll know your meatballs are done when they have a crispy golden brown exterior. You’ll also notice that the fat has cooked off and will be sitting at the bottom of the pan.
The best ground beef for meatballs is 80/20. 75/25 is too fatty, and 85/15 can make the meatballs dry.
The most common binding ingredient in meatballs is breadcrumbs and eggs. Both ingredients work together to bind the meatballs. You can use gluten free breadcrumbs or even almond/coconut flour as a binder as well.
No, you shouldn’t put flour in meatballs. breadcrumbs are a better binder. Flour will lead to a gummy texture in meatballs.
Yes, it’s best to add an egg or two when making meatballs. It helps make the meatballs tender and binds them together.
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Homemade Meatballs Recipe
- Prepare a parchment lined baking sheet. Lightly spray with olive oil.
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl until thoroughly combined
- Roll into approximately 2 tablespoon balls and place on a baking sheet.
- Bake the meatballs for 10-15 minutes, then flip and bake for another 10-15 minutes on the other side.