Classic Meatballs

Over the years, I’ve taken a stab at many a recipe, some turn out successful, and some not so successful. One thing I have never attempted to make before was meatballs. Not necessarily because it was hard, but because it always just seemed so much easier to buy the ready made frozen kind. But as J. and I continue to try to move more and more away from processed food, I knew that if I wanted to keep eating meatballs, I was going to have to start making them from scratch.

Classic Meatballs

  • 1/2 cup milk (whole, 2%, or skim)
  • 1/2 cup Italian breadcrumbs
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp salt
  • Pepper
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup finely minced Italian parsley
  • 1 TBSP minced garlic
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1 clove garlic, finely minced
  • 1 jar of tomato sauce

For this recipe I used ground chuck because it had a higher fat content that I knew would lead to more flavorful and tender meatballs. Ground pork, chicken, turkey, or veal could also be used. Just be careful to watch your cooking times more carefully if using a leaner meat.

In a large skillet (with a lid), heat your marinara sauce and let it start to simmer while you make your meatballs.

In a bowl, combine the milk and breadcrumbs and let sit.

In a separate bowl, whisk your egg. Whisk in the salt and a generous quantity of black pepper, then whisk in the Parmesan and parsley. Be careful not to over salt, because the cheese will also add saltiness to the meat.Add in your ground meat, then the garlic and onions, and mix together. Lastly, add in your soaked breadcrumbs and mix together with your hands.

Form meatballs by pinching and rolling meat in your hands into about 1″ spheres. Place these directly in your simmering sauce and cover. Let cook for about 30 minutes, turning once. You can of course also bake these in the oven at 400°F for 30 minutes.

Serve these while they are hot. I topped mine with extra Parmesan cheese and served with garlic bread.

These were the most tender meatballs I have ever head. The high fat content, as well as cooking in the sauce kept these very moist. We had a handful of leftover meatballs that I can’t wait to make meatball subs with.  A classic recipe, and even more delicious than I could have hoped.

Until next time!


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