Simple Italian Meatballs – Match Foodie Finds






Italian meatballs and pasta is a crowd-pleasing, kid-friendly dinner concept. This really is the greatest meatball recipe and it’s merely made with floor beef, breadcrumbs, parmesan, and your favourite marinara sauce!

Spaghetti and meatballs on plate.

Nonna’s Italian Meatballs!

Making do-it-yourself Italian meatballs is definitely sort of therapeutic for me. It’s like making cookies, however the finish outcomes are hearty and meaty as a substitute of sentimental and chewy.

My mother has been making her well-known spaghetti and meatball recipe since I can keep in mind. It was a weekly staple at our home…particularly the night time earlier than soccer video games. So? I turned to Mama Hersh for her well-known (and straightforward!) Italian meatball recipe and I can’t wait to share!

PS: whereas that is my mother’s recipe, she bought it from my Italian Grandma Marie (Nonna), so we’ve got her to thank for these infants, too! If you happen to’re huge into Italian -inspired recipes, try my Grandma’s pizza recipe, too.

Why you’ll love them!

  • Easy substances
  • Prepared in lower than an hour
  • Good taste
  • So good on spaghetti!

Substances for Italian Meatballs

Meat: my mother historically makes use of 80/20 floor beef (20% fats). A bit little bit of fats actually helps the flavour and texture of those meatballs. Nobody likes a dry meatball, so if you’re going to swap for lesser-fat meat, simply beware.

I’ve made related meatballs that decision for each floor beef and floor pork (or Italian sausage), so be at liberty to do 50/50.

Binder: to ensure that meatballs to carry their ball texture, it’s necessary to bind them with an egg. All you want is 1 giant egg for this recipe!

Breadcrumbs: don’t overlook the Italian breadcrumbs! They actually add numerous texture and, these are ITALIAN meatballs, in spite of everything.

If you happen to can’t discover Italian breadcrumbs, you may all the time use plain and/or gluten-free breadcrumbs with a few teaspoons of Italian seasoning in them.

Flavors: my mother retains her Italian meatballs easy with salt, black pepper, and parmesan cheese. That’s proper, there’s parmesan cheese packed into these meatballs and it’s oh-so-good. 

If you happen to really feel so inclined, you may add any of the next to your meatballs:

  • crushed garlic
  • minced onion
  • contemporary herbs corresponding to oregano, basil, parsley, and many others.

What are conventional Italian meatballs made from?

Conventional Italian meatballs (that have been made in my grandmother’s Italian kitchen) are made out of floor beef and generally a bit floor pork. In addition they embody breadcrumbs, eggs, and parmesan cheese.

Italian meatballs in cast iron skillet.

The best way to Make the Italian Meatballs (step-by-step)


Place floor beef, egg, bread crumbs, parmesan cheese, salt, and pepper in a big bowl. Use a picket utensil to combine every thing collectively. I want to make use of my arms as a result of it’s sooner.

professional tip

I like to recommend utilizing your arms to combine every thing collectively. It’s simply simpler to actually get in there together with your arms as a substitute of making an attempt to combine it along with a picket spoon.

Roll into Balls

Place floor beef, egg, bread crumbs, parmesan cheese, salt, and pepper in a big bowl. Use a picket utensil to combine every thing collectively. I want to make use of my arms as a result of it’s sooner.

Word: the larger your meatballs, the longer they might want to simmer to totally cook dinner.

Sear on Range

Warmth olive oil in a big cast-iron pan (nonstick works, too) over medium/excessive warmth. Sear meatballs on all sides for round 8 minutes. The objective right here is to brown the entire edges so that you get a beautiful crunchy outer shell.

Let simmer

Add marinara sauce and purple wine to the skillet and stir. Decrease the warmth to low and canopy. Let simmer for round 20 minutes in order that the sauce thickens a bit and the meatballs absolutely cook dinner.


How do I do know when my Italian meatballs are absolutely cooked?

The easiest way to know that your meatballs are absolutely cooked is to make use of a meat thermometer. Stick the thermometer into the middle of your meatball and cease about midway. The studying for a beef meatball needs to be at the very least 160ºF.

beef: 160ºF
pork: 165ºF
rooster: 165ºF
turkey: 165ºF

Why are my meatballs robust?

Your meatballs are possible robust since you didn’t have sufficient fats in your meat. Be sure that to make use of 80% fats OR add a number of teaspoons of olive oil to your combination.

Including some milk to the combination also can assist with this! I do wish to be aware, that my mother and grandma’s conventional Italian meatball recipe does NOT name for milk.
If you happen to’ve ever made a meatloaf that has milk in it, it’s the identical concept!

Is it higher to bake or fry meatballs?

Frying your meatballs is unquestionably higher than baking them. By frying your meatballs after which letting them simmer within the sauce, you give them a scrumptious outdoors texture with an excellent moist inside.

Nevertheless, you may bake your meatballs within the oven on a baking sheet, for those who select. They only received’t come out crispy on the surface and ideal on the within.

meat thermometer

Strive it!

Thermoworks Thermapen

We swear through the use of a meat thermometer when cooking any reduce of meat. The Thermapen is our go-to meat thermometer that works each time.

Purchase Now

Beef meatballs in marinara sauce.

The best way to Make Meatballs More healthy

Meat: strive swapping the meat for a decrease in fats beef and even floor turkey. Do beware that the decrease in fats you go, the more durable your meatballs will find yourself.

Breadcrumbs: there are every kind of breadcrumbs available on the market as of late – gluten-free, paleo, keto, and many others. Choose your poison! PS: I’ve additionally made these by swapping out the breadcrumbs totally for rolled oats. Begin with 1/3 cup and go from there.

Noodles: the noodle is completely as much as you! I’m an angel-hair pasta sort of woman, however you may completely make issues quite a bit more healthy on this enviornment. Listed here are some strategies:

  • Gluten-free pasta >> you will discover g/f pasta at just about each grocery retailer as of late. They do have a barely totally different texture however are nonetheless nice as a substitution.
  • Zoodles >> ditch the pasta altogether and spiralize a zucchini for a low-carb choice!
  • Spaghetti squash >> swap your pasta out for spaghetti squash. The flavour is barely candy, however it’s an effective way to eat your veggies.
Bowl of spaghetti and meatballs.

The best way to Eat Your Italian Meatballs

Don’t really feel like consuming your Italian meatball recipe on a mattress of pasta? You’re in luck as a result of there are such a lot of alternative ways you may eat these meatballs.

  • Appetizer: eat these Italian meatballs on their very own. Serve them at a celebration with a toothpick and also you’ve bought a fast and straightforward app.
  • Sub/Sandwich: everybody loves a meatball sub! Pop a number of meatballs and marinara sauce in your favourite Italian bread, cowl it with mozzarella cheese, and bam, you’ve bought a model new meal to feed the fam.
  • Bowl: serve your meatballs subsequent to quinoa, your favourite inexperienced, and roasted veggies.

Combine Up Your Sauce

Another excuse why these are the greatest meatballs is that they’re so versatile. Make your meatballs as directed, however as a substitute of simmering in marinara sauce. Strive one in all these as a substitute!

  • BBQ: bbq sauce is critically such a straightforward factor to taste your meatball recipe with. Use your favourite model or make do-it-yourself bbq sauce.
  • Tikka Masala: tikka masala is made out of a mix of coconut milk, tomato sauce, and garam masala. It’s tremendous easy to make and filled with taste! Try our Tikka Masala Meatballs right here.
  • Teriyaki: our do-it-yourself teriyaki sauce is made with 5 substances. Serve your meatballs on rice subsequent to your favourite stir fried veggie.
  • Coconut Curry: for those who’ve by no means made our curry meatballs, they’re critically SO GOOD. Try our coconut curry sauce in this put up.

marinara sauce in bowl.


Marinara Sauce

Any marinara sauce will work for this recipe however we extremely advocate making this do-it-yourself marinara sauce.

Make It

The best way to Retailer Meatballs

Let your meatballs and marinara sauce cool fully. Then, switch into an hermetic container and retailer within the fridge for as much as 3-5 days.

Are you able to freeze meatballs?

You may simply freeze meatballs and so they make for a superb make-ahead dinner concept. For this recipe, we recommend holding off on the sauce half till thawing and reheating. Sear your meatballs after which proceed to cook dinner all over.

  1. Let the meatballs cool fully.
  2. Then switch them right into a gallon-size freezer-safe bag.
  3. Take away as a lot air as potential after which seal.
  4. Freeze for as much as 3 months. 
Bowl of meatballs with spaghetti.
meatballs in bowl with parmesan cheese.

Selfmade Italian Meatballs

Italian meatballs are a crowd-pleasing favourite which can be greatest served with marinara and spaghetti. This Italian meatball recipe is just made with floor beef, breadcrumbs, parmesan, and your favourite marinara!

Prep:15 minutes

Cook dinner:30 minutes

Whole:45 minutes


  • 1 lb. floor beef 80% lean/20% fats
  • 1 giant egg
  • 1/2 cup Italian bread crumbs choice to sub gluten-free or entire wheat bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese + extra for topping
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 25 oz. marinara sauce use our do-it-yourself marinara sauce!
  • 1/4 cup dry purple wine
  • 8 oz. spaghetti noodles or any sort of noodle!


  • Place floor beef, egg, bread crumbs, parmesan cheese, salt, and pepper in a big bowl.

  • Then, use a big picket spoon or your arms to totally combine, combining all substances. I like to recommend utilizing your arms because it’s sooner and simpler.

  • As soon as mixed, warmth olive oil in a big skillet or forged iron over medium warmth.

  • Use a standard-size cookie scoop to scoop meat into your arms. Then, type right into a ball and place on the skillet. Repeat till there is no such thing as a meat left. It is best to get round 16 medium-size meatballs.

  • Brown meatballs on all sides for round 8 minutes. Use a pair of tongs to flip every meatball, being cautious to not burn the outsides.

  • As soon as all sides are brown, pour in marinara sauce and purple wine. Toss in order that the meatballs are coated in sauce.

  • Decrease warmth to low and canopy. Let simmer for about 20 minutes, tossing each 5 minutes.

  • Whereas the meatballs are simmering, put together your spaghetti of alternative by following the instructions in your package deal.

  • As soon as your noodles are cooked, pressure and serve with meatballs and sauce. Prime with a beneficiant quantity of parmesan cheese and contemporary floor pepper.

Vitamin details

Energy: 501kcal Protein: 29g Fats: 19g Fiber: 5g Sugar: 9g

Images: pictures taken on this put up are by Erin from The Picket Skillet.

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