This baked meatball recipe has what it takes to lure your family out of hiding and head to the dinner table. Tender, juicy, and utterly delicious, it’s a recipe they’ll beg you to make every week! This famous meatball recipe has become quite the conversation topic at our potlucks every year.
Best Meatball Recipe
Honestly, this is the best meatball recipe you’ll find. By using a blend of ground meats and ricotta cheese, you get a sensational flavor and texture. My family loves this and the kids love helping make it too. It’s good for a cozy family dinner or for when company comes. Who doesn’t love meatballs?!?
Easy Meatball Recipe
I know making something for the first time always seems tricky. But I promise this easy meatball recipe won’t trip you up. Simply follow the instructions below and you’ll soon be a meatball-making pro!
- Ground beef & Ground pork – I use both ground beef and ground pork. This ensures a nice level of fattiness without being too fatty
- Eggs – beaten eggs help bind the meatballs together by adding enough moisture
- Breadcrumbs – And yes, you need these too because of balance! I use plain but you can use Italian style. I recommend plain though because this recipe uses fresh garlic, parsley and basil which makes it taste so fresh and delicious!
My secret ingredient in this baked meatball recipe is ricotta cheese. Trust me, it gives these meatballs an extra-heavenly texture!
How do You Make Meatballs from Scratch
Making this baked meatball recipe is one of the easiest things you can do for dinner any night. I used to buy the bags of meatballs thinking that was an easy shortcut, but this way I know what I’m putting into it and that I’m using fresh and unprocessed ingredients.
It only takes combining the ingredients, rolling them into balls, and baking. Well, it’s a little more detailed than that, but you get the idea. Just follow my steps below and you’ll be making homemade meatballs in no time.
Expert Tips and Tricks for the Perfect Meatballs
The first time I ever made meatballs, they didn’t turn out very good at all. They fell apart and were a total mess. I think my husband only ate them to be polite. But now I know what to do. Here are a few tips:
- Don’t mix it too much – you only need to mix everything together until it’s just combined or it will leave you with tough meatballs!
- Keep the size the same – If not, they all cook at different rates. A scooper will help you make them one size.
- Use pork AND beef – There are all beef meatballs and all pork meatballs, however by using a 50/50 blend of pork and beef it gives your meatballs a perfect amount of fat to make them juicy.
You’re the meatball to my spaghetti.
What is the secret to good meatballs?
Using a mixture of pork and beef adds just the right richness. A balance of moisture with ingredients plus baking over frying will also render your meatballs with a flavorful and juicy texture everyone will love.
Why do you put milk in meatballs?
In this simple meatball recipe, milk is used to add moisture to the breadcrumbs. This then renders the ingredients together and allows for light, airy, and absolutely scrumptious meatballs.
How many eggs does it take to make a pound of meat for meatballs?
You will want one egg per pound of meat. As this recipe uses a pound of ground beef and a pound of ground pork, you’ll want to be sure to include 2 eggs in your mixture.
Why do you put egg and breadcrumbs in meatballs?
Eggs and breadcrumbs bind the meatball mixture together. Some say this is for moisture, but that’s where the milk comes in so that all together, you get the best meatballs ever!
Are breadcrumbs necessary for meatballs?
Yes, breadcrumbs are a must for your best meatballs. They will bind with the moist ingredients to keep them perfectly together.
How to Make Meatballs by Hand
Making meatballs by hand is a really fun thing to do. I like to use those disposable gloves to keep my hands from getting covered with meatball mixture. It helps me roll them too. A cookie scoop can make it easier to get the right size but you’ll want to roll them briefly in your hands to get a smoothed, round appearance.
How do you make a meatball?
All you need to do is round up the ingredients listed below, combine them without over-blending, and roll into balls. That’s it!
What makes a great meatball?
I think the mixture of the 2 ground meats is key as is adding ricotta cheese. I know most people add eggs and breadcrumbs, but ricotta makes a difference. So does fresh herbs! You can use dried, but fresh is so much better!
How do you keep meatballs from falling apart?
If your meatballs fall apart, what binds them isn’t enough. That’s why I also use the ricotta. It evens out the texture and makes all the ingredients to stay together while adding even more flavor resulting in moist meatballs.
How to Cook Meatballs
There are so many ways to cook meatballs so if you don’t have time, you don’t have to bake them. You can fry them in a pan or drop them in soup or sauce. I love baked meatballs though because I can get busy with other things while they leave that drool-worthy aroma lingering around the house.
How to Bake Meatballs
This oven baked meatball recipe has a bit of fat in it which means you should make sure you line your baking sheet under your drainage rack. You’ll have much easier cleanup this way. A little cooking spray can help them from sticking to that rack too.
When cooking meatballs in the oven, keep your meatballs far enough apart. About half an inch should do it so they will all have the room they need to cook nicely. The browning from the oven adds so much flavor which results in very flavorful meatballs with restaurant quality taste.
What temp should meatballs be cooked to?
Meatballs should have an internal temperature of 160F to be cooked fully. While this recipe will ensure you get that right, you can use a meat thermometer to check them at the end of the baking time.
How do you cook meatballs without drying them out?
This recipe for meatballs includes 2 types of meats with higher fat content. Along with the other ingredients, when you bake them together, they will not dry out and will come out with a wonderful texture and flavor.
Is it better to bake or fry meatballs?
Baking meatballs in the oven is better, health-wise, since you’re not using additional oil. It’s the best way to get that wonderful texture and great flavor without adding more calories and fat. Oven baked meatballs have a unique flavor without being greasy.
What to Serve with Meatballs (Side Dishes)
Meatballs are always a match with spaghetti and your favorite marinara sauce with a touch of olive oil. Though you can get rolls and make them into meatball sandwiches. A fresh salad with homemade Italian dressing, steamed broccoli, garlic green beans, or even brussels sprouts will make a nice addition to serve with meatballs.
Can You Freeze Meatballs?
Yes – and that’s the best part! If you make extras, just let them cool and then put them on a baking sheet to freeze for several hours. After that, you can put them in a plastic freezer bag or freezer container. Make sure to label them with the date because they’ll be good for about 3 months and you’ll want to use them before then.
How to Reheat Frozen Meatballs
If you want to heat meatballs that aren’t in sauce, heat them at 300F in a single layer on your baking sheet. Cover them so they won’t dry out and heat until they’ve warmed through, about 10 to 15 minutes. In sauce, you can simply warm them over the stove in a matter of minutes. In a pinch, you can use the microwave but without sauce, you risk drying them out.
Meatballs are very versatile and one of my families favorite lunch dishes to make after reheating leftover meatballs is a meatball sub. Simply place a few meatballs on a sandwich roll with some marinara sauce and a sprinkle of fresh parmesan cheese.
Watch How To Make Meatballs (Video)
Best Meatball Recipe
- 1 lb ground beef
- 1 lb ground pork
- 1 cup bread crumbs
- 1 cup parmesan cheese (grated)
- 1 cup fresh parsley (chopped)
- kosher salt (to taste)
- pepper (to taste)
- 2 large eggs (beaten)
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1 cup ricotta cheese
- 3 garlic cloves (minced)
- fresh basil (chopped)
- In a large mixing bowl, mix together 1 lb ground beef and 1 lb ground pork. Add in the bread crumbs, ricotta cheese, parsley, two beaten eggs, parmesan, milk, and 3 cloves of minced garlic. Add in salt and pepper to taste. Mix well. (a food processor can also be used for this step)
- Once thoroughly mixed, prepare a baking sheet with a drainage rack. Roll meatballs into golfball sized balls. Bake for 25 minutes at 350F.
- Garnish with fresh chopped basil and enjoy!
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