Baked Meatball Recipe

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This delicious Baked Meatball Recipe is an easy way to get dinner on the table without oil splattering all over your stove. They are great to make ahead and freeze, too, and the method works with almost any meatball recipe you can cook up.

Rows of baked meatballs on a baking rack set over a baking sheet.


 

Learn how to bake meatballs for weekly meal prep, spaghetti dinners, potluck buffets, and more. Cooked meatballs are delicious tossed with marinara sauce for your next Italian Feast, added to French rolls for meatball subs, and bathed in cream sauce for Swedish meatballs.

Make appetizer meatballs smothered in grape jelly sauce or add them to your next bowl of meatball soup. This versatile recipe is ready in a flash and works with almost any type of ground meat and no matter how you make them, they bake up juicy and full of flavor.

Recipe ingredients

Labeled ingredients for baked meatballs.

At a Glance: Here is a quick snapshot of what ingredients are in this recipe.
Please see the recipe card below for specific quantities.

Ingredient notes

  • Ground meat: Choose any ground meat such as ground turkey, ground beef, ground chicken, ground pork, ground Italian sausage, or a combination of 2 or more. Avoid super-lean options like fat-free turkey breast.

Step-by-step instructions

  1. Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper for easy cleanup. Coat a wire rack with nonstick spray and set on prepared baking sheet.
A baking rack coated with nonstick spray, set over a baking sheet covered in foil.
  1. In a large bowl, combine ground meat, bread crumbs, onion, parsley, eggs, garlic, Worcestershire sauce, basil, oregano, 1 teaspoon salt, and ½ teaspoon pepper. 
Ingredients for meatballs in a clear glass bowl.
  1. Using a strong spatula or your hands (I like to wear latex gloves), mix well.
Ingredients for meatballs mixed in a clear glass bowl.
  1. Scoop with a cookie scoop and shape the mixture into 1-inch balls (you should have about 24 meatballs total).
Rows of unbaked meatballs on a baking rack set over a baking sheet.
  1. Arrange meatballs on rack and brush with oil to help the outsides form a brown crust.
Rows of unbaked meatballs on a baking rack set over a baking sheet.
  1. Bake until browned with crispy edges, about 15 to 20 minutes (an instant-read thermometer should read 165 degrees for 15 seconds). Brush with or serve with your favorite sauce if desired.
Rows of baked meatballs on a baking rack set over a baking sheet.

Recipe tips and variations

  • Yield: This recipe makes about 24 meatballs, or 8 servings (3 meatballs each).
  • Storage: Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
  • Make ahead: The meatballs can be made up to 3 days in advance. Store covered in the refrigerator.
  • Freezer: Arrange the cooked, cooled meatballs in a single layer on a small baking sheet or plate, not touching. Freeze until solid, about 1 hour, then transfer to a freezer bag or container and store up to 1 month.
  • Reheat: To reheat frozen meatballs, place on a baking sheet, cover with foil, and bake in a 300-degree oven until the meatballs reach 165 degrees on an internal thermometer, about 15 to 20 minutes. Or, reheat in a covered saucepan with your favorite sauce for 10 to 15 minutes (to 165 degrees).
  • Pan-fried meatballs: If you prefer to pan-fry your meatballs, in a large skillet over medium heat, heat 2 tbsps olive oil. Add meatballs and cook, turning occasionally until brown on all sides and internal temperature reaches 165 degrees, about 15 to 20 minutes. Drain on paper towels.
  • Air-fryer meatballs: Preheat air fryer to 350 degrees. Working in batches, arrange meatballs in air fryer basket, brush with oil, and cook until browned with crispy edges, turning over meatballs after 5 minutes, about 8 minutes (an internal thermometer should read 165 degrees for 15 seconds).
  • Customize your meatballs: You have a lot of leeway to change these up as you see fit. Add other spices like Italian seasoning, onion powder, garlic powder, or red pepper flakes. No fresh parsley in the crisper drawer? Just leave it out.
  • Chicken meatballs: If you can’t be bothered with breading chicken, Chicken Parmesan Meatballs are fast, easy, and wildly delicious on pasta or grilled garlic bread. Pass the parmesan cheese, please!
  • Crockpot meatballs: These insanely popular Crockpot Meatballs are sauced with grape jelly and Heinz chili sauce, a magical combination celebrated across the Midwest.
  • Italian meatballs: These classic Italian Meatballs are swimming in tomato sauce and ready to be served with spaghetti, on meatball subs, or as an appetizer. Don’t forget the mozzarella cheese.
  • Korean meatballs: These spicy Korean Barbecue Meatballs are made with ground beef and are brushed with a sticky apricot-gochujang glaze.
  • Turkey meatballs: Leaner than beef, these Turkey Meatballs are healthy, packed with flavor, and incredibly moist on the inside. A combination of fresh and dried herbs gives these meatballs an Italian flare while also providing a balance of flavors. They make an excellent addition to your next meal prep menu, especially when paired with roasted broccoli or other vegetables.
  • Swedish meatballs: The best Swedish Meatballs are made from scratch with an easy homemade gravy. They are so delicious with mashed potatoes and lingonberry or cranberry sauce.
A bowl of Teriyaki meatballs over rice with broccoli.
Easy and flavorful, these Teriyaki Meatballs are a great meal prep or dinner idea. They start with my wildly popular turkey meatball recipe and finish with a sweet and sticky homemade teriyaki glaze.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I shape meatballs?

The easiest method is to use a small ice cream scoop. Not only does this give you equal portions, but it also gets you most of the way to the round shape you’re looking for. If you would like an even more precise measurement, scoop and place on your kitchen scale. Your looking for a 1 ½-ounce portion for each meatball.

How do you shape sticky meatballs?

If your meatball mixture is too sticky, wet your hands with cold water. Keeping your hands wet will prevent the mixture from sticking to them.

How do you know if you seasoned your meatballs well before cooking?

If you want to taste and adjust your seasonings before you commit to a batch of meatballs, form a small patty with a tsp or tbsp of the raw meat mixture. Fry it in a pan and taste it for seasonings. Along with tasting for salt and pepper, you could add a teaspoon garlic powder, a teaspoon ground ginger, or any other spices that interest you.

How do you make gluten free meatballs?

Use your favorite bread to make gluten free breadcrumbs or choose rolled oats. You’ll also want to read the label on your Worcestershire sauce and make sure it doesn’t contain barley malt vinegar which is not gluten free.

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Rows of baked meatballs on a baking rack set over a baking sheet.

Baked Meatball Recipe

This delicious Baked Meatball Recipe is an easy way to get dinner on the table without oil splattering all over your stove. They are great to make ahead and freeze, too, and the method works with almost any meatball recipe you can cook up.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 8 servings (3 meatballs each)
Course Appetizer, Main Course
Cuisine American
Calories 214
5 from 5 votes

Ingredients 

Instructions 

  • Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil for easy cleanup. Coat a wire rack with nonstick spray and set on prepared baking sheet.
  • In a large bowl, combine ground meat, bread crumbs, onion, parsley, eggs, garlic, Worcestershire sauce, basil, oregano, 1 teaspoon salt, and ½ teaspoon pepper. 
  • Using a strong spatula or your hands (I like to wear latex gloves), mix well. Shape the mixture into 1-inch balls (you should have about 24 meatballs total).
  • Arrange meatballs on rack, brush with oil, and bake until browned with crispy edges, about 15 to 20 minutes (an internal thermometer should read 165 degrees for 15 seconds).

Recipe Video

Notes

  1. Ground meat: Choose any ground meat such as ground turkey, ground beef, ground chicken, ground pork, or a combination of 2 or more. Avoid super-lean options like fat-free turkey breast.
  2. Yield: This recipe makes about 24 meatballs, or 8 servings (3 meatballs each).
  3. Storage: Store leftovers covered in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

Nutrition

Serving: 3 meatballsCalories: 214kcalCarbohydrates: 6gProtein: 11gFat: 16gSaturated Fat: 5gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 61mgSodium: 106mgPotassium: 203mgFiber: 1gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 190IUVitamin C: 3mgCalcium: 33mgIron: 2mg
Did you make this recipe?Tag @culinaryhill on Instagram so we can admire your masterpiece! #culinaryhill
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Meggan Hill is a classically-trained chef and professional writer. Her meticulously-tested recipes and detailed tutorials bring confidence and success to home cooks everywhere. Meggan has been featured on NPR, HuffPost, FoxNews, LA Times, and more.

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