Living in the middle of nowhere has its benefits. It also has its drawbacks. One of them being convenience. We mare constantly planning and making sure were are prepared with supplies and food that we want and need. Something I have learned to love is making our meals from scratch. Not only is it easy but it is so much healthier and its nice knowing what is in our food. So, today I want to show you my homemade meatball recipe, which is something I always make a big batch of and freeze for later use.
I think homemade meatballs sometimes get the impression that they are hard to make, but they actually are one of the easiest things to make and I want to show you how I make mine.
There is so much flexibility that can come from making them from home. You can change the basic ingredients to fit your meal whether you have an Italian inspired meal, or if you just want a flavorful meatball to use for Swedish meatballs. The basic ingredients are ground meat, breadcrumbs of some kind, seasonings, and eggs. These are what I like to use in mine.
Often times, the type of ground meat depends on what I have in my freezer. Sometimes I make them with ground turkey and sometimes ground beef, or a combination of them both. You can also use ground pork or sausage.
Something else I have to consider now that I am gluten intolerant, is making these gluten free. I have found Gluten Free Panko Bread Crumbs which work well in meatballs. You can use them the same as regular breadcrumbs.
For my recipe I like to use 2 lbs of meat so that I can bake enough homemade meatballs to be able to freeze them for later use. This works really well for our family of 6. We usually get two meals out of this. I have 3 growing boys, what can I do?
Now, if you read the title you will see that I said we are making two different homemade meatballs using two different methods.
How to Make Homemade Meatballs Method 1
This is the recipe I used for years, and it is still my go to often….
- Add your meat, eggs, garlic, parmesan cheese, fresh herbs(if possible, dried works well too), salt and pepper to a large bowl.
- Mix all the ingredients until just combined. Do not over mix.
- Add the breadcrumbs, starting with about 1/2 of them. If it feels too wet, continue to add a small amount at a time until the mixture is still moist but not soggy.
- Preheat your oven to 425 degrees
- Scoop your meat into 2 tablespoon balls and shape them. Set them on a sheet pan.
- Once all formed, bake in the oven for 10-12 minutes. You want the temperature inside the meatballs to read 160 degrees.
- Sometimes I will flip my meatballs half way through, but this is not really necessary. They are so easy to bake in the oven.
- When they are done cooking transfer them to your spaghetti sauce or other sauce. If you are wanting to store some in the freezer, you can cool them on a wire rack and pop them into a freezer bag. I try to get the excess air out and label the bag with the date and with what is inside.
How to make amazing, flavorful homemade meatballs. I love making them from scratch with ingredients I already have in my home. These freeze well and can be used in so many dishes.
- 2 lbs ground meat of your choice(we use beef and ground turkey often) I generally use what I have in the freezer
- 1/2 cup breadcrumbs(panko or traditional) I use gluten free Panko because I am gluten intolerant.
- 2 tbsp minced garlic
- 1 cup parmesan cheese
- 1 tbsp each fresh chopped herbs including (basil, oregano, parsley) you can sub dried herbs, just cut them back because they are stronger in flavor.
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper(optional)
Mix all ingredients in a bowl, but leave out half the breadcrumbs. Sometimes I end up not needing as much.
Preheat your oven to 425°
Shape your meat into balls about 2 tbsp in size
Place on a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Bake for 10-12 minutes or until the center reaches 160°
Serve immediately in your favorite sauce, or freeze them in a freezer bag.
Let them cool completely before freezing.
We love having ready to use meatballs in the freezer. It makes dinner so much easier.
This makes flavorful meatballs, and I absolutely love this recipe. If you plan to eat meatballs occasionally make sure to make this recipe and freeze half or even 2/3 of them! My thought is if you are already making them, have the ingredients out and are using the oven, make enough to save some for another meal. It will save you time and energy on that busy weeknight.
Homemade Meatball Recipe Method 2
These two meatball recipes are quite similar, except for one main ingredient. Milk. If you cannot have milk, the above recipe is perfect. If you can, make sure to try this recipe out and let me know!
- Mix your milk and Panko bread crumbs together in a bowl and let it sit for 5-10 minutes. Give it a stir to make sure it is all combined.
- Combine the remaining ingredients: Add the ground meat, garlic, eggs, parmesan, herbs, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes.
- Use your hands to combine all the ingredients. Make sure not to over mix, this can cause your meatballs to be tough.
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees and line your baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Shape your meatballs into approximately 2 tbsp sized balls.
- Place them all on the sheet pan and bake for 10-12 minutes or until 160 degrees in the center.
Homemade Meatballs Using a Panade
How to make another amazing meatball using a different method. These are moist and so flavorful.
- 2 lbs ground beef, turkey, or pork You can combine as you prefer. We often have one of each
- 1 cup panko bread crumbs You can use Gluten Free Panko as well.
- 1/3 cup milk
- 2 tbsp minced garlic
- 1 tbsp each dried basil, oregano, parsley If you use fresh, combine to make about 1/4 fresh herbs
- 1 cup parmesan cheese
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 1/4 crushed red pepper flakes optional
Mix your milk and breadcrumbs in a large bowl and let sit for 5-10 minutes
Add the rest of your ingredients to the bowl and combine well, but make sure not to overmix.
Preheat the oven to 425°
Shape mixture into 2 tbsp sized balls
Place on a parchment lined baking sheet
Bake for 10-12 minutes or until inside is 160°
Serve immediately in your favorite sauce, or try my easy spaghetti sauce!
Freeze the remainder of the meatballs in a freezer bag. Label and date the bag. You can easily add frozen meatballs to your favorite sauce and let them cook for 20 minutes. You will have fresh amazing homemade meatballs.
Whichever homemade meatball recipe you choose, you will not be disappointed. I have always been wary of store bought meatballs. I love knowing exactly what is in my food and by just taking the effort to make some of these things at home, I am encouraged and feel good feeding my family.
These homemade meatballs can be used for spaghetti, Swedish, sweet and sour, or any number of sauces you might like to use. My kids favorite is Spaghetti and Meatballs(with my homemade french bread), and I can easily make this gluten free, make a small amount for just me, so my family doesn’t have to change their diet.
There is just something about homemade food, and these homemade meatballs are one of my must have staples.
If you haven’t ever made homemade meatballs, this meatball recipe is calling your name. You will not believe how easy they are, and you will know exactly what is in your food. That is always a great thing.