Italian Meatballs

$9.37 recipe / $0.89 serving / $0.22 meatball

I was really craving some red meat the other day and the first thing I wanted was meatballs. Of course, I didn’t have any meatballs so all I could do was sit there and think about meatballs. Well, while contemplating the meatball, I thought of at least 4 or 5 different ways to eat meatballs (spaghetti and meatballs, meatball sandwiches). I said to myself, “How great would it be to make a BUNCH of meatballs, freeze them in small batches, then take them out little by little and make different things with them?” So, today, that is what I did! I made a super big batch of meatballs (42 to be exact) and I have already made two things with them… the rest will go in the freezer for now, only to wait for their day to be made into something amazing!

Oh, one more thing… I have to toot my own horn here because I have never made meatballs before and these have to be the best meatballs I have EVER had in my life. The pictures don’t do the enticing aroma enough justice…

Italian Meatballs

Italian Meatballs

5.0 from 6 reviews
Italian Meatballs
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Total Cost: $9.37
Cost Per Serving: $0.89
Serves: 40 meatballs
Ingredients
  • 1 lb. ground beef $3.48
  • one (1.25 lb.) pkg mild italian sausage, casings removed $3.17
  • ½ medium yellow onion $0.12
  • 2 cloves fresh garlic $0.12
  • 6 Tbsp, divided olive oil $0.64
  • ½ cup bread crumbs $0.18
  • ⅓ cup grated parmesan cheese $0.31
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley $0.77 (whole bunch)
  • 2 large eggs, beaten $0.31
  • ½ cup all purpose flour $0.27
Instructions
  1. Finely dice the onion and garlic. Cook them in a small skillet using 2 Tbsp of olive oil until they are soft and translucent.
  2. In a large bowl combine the ground beef, Italian sausage (remove from the casing), bread crumbs, parmesan cheese, beaten eggs, parsley and onion/garlic mixture (let cool slightly so they can be handled with your bare hands). Using your hands, mix and squish it all together until it is thoroughly combined. Your hands really are the only tool that will accomplish this effectively so if you don’t like touching raw meat, you better get yourself some gloves!
  3. Prepare your meatball making station by getting a small bowl and putting a ½ cup of flour in it. You will be dredging the meatballs in the flour before pan frying them. Also grab a large plate or platter to hold the flour dredged meatballs prior to frying. Using your hands (again) grab small amounts of meatball mix and roll into small balls (I made mine slightly smaller than a golf ball) and then roll them around in the flour until coated lightly. Place the floured meatballs on the plate and continue until you have used all of the meatball mix. You will probably need to rinse your hands every 10 meatballs or so because they get coated and sticky, making the rolling quite difficult.
  4. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and get a large glass dish ready for baking. Put the remaining ¼ cup of olive oil in a large skillet and heat it over medium/high heat until it is very hot but not smoking (if you drop a little flour in it, it will sizzle A LOT when it’s ready). Working in batches (about 10 at a time), brown the meatballs on all sides (about 30 seconds to 1 minute on each side). The meatballs do not need to be cooked through because you will bake them as well. Basically, you are just adding texture, flavor and strength to the meatball by searing the outside.
  5. As you remove each batch of meatballs from the skillet, place them in the glass dish until they are all done pan frying. Place the glass dish full of meatballs in the oven and cook at 350 for about 25 minutes or until cooked through. If you made larger meatballs they will take longer to cook. If you are unsure about whether or not your meatballs are done cooking, simply sacrifice the largest one you can find and see if it is still pink inside.

 

meatball ingredientsmeatball mixtureSTEP 3: Prepare your meatball making station by getting a small bowl and putting a 1/2 cup of flour in it. You will be dredging the meatballs in the flour before pan frying them. Also grab a large plate or platter to hold the flour dredged meatballs prior to frying. Using your hands (again) grab small amounts of meatball mix and roll into small balls (I made mine slightly smaller than a golf ball) and then roll them around in the flour until coated lightly. Place the floured meatballs on the plate and continue until you have used all of the meatball mix. You will probably need to rinse your hands every 10 meatballs or so because they get coated and sticky, making the rolling quite difficult.

dredged meatballsSTEP 4: Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and get a large glass dish ready for baking. Put the remaining 1/4 cup of olive oil in a large skillet and heat it over medium/high heat until it is very hot but not smoking (if you drop a little flour in it, it will sizzle A LOT when it’s ready). Working in batches (about 10 at a time), brown the meatballs on all sides (about 30 seconds to 1 minute on each side). The meatballs do not need to be cooked through because you will bake them as well. Basically, you are just adding texture, flavor and strength to the meatball by searing the outside.

half fried meatballsSTEP 5: As you remove each batch of meatballs from the skillet, place them in the glass dish until they are all done pan frying. Place the glass dish full of meatballs in the oven and cook at 350 for about 25 minutes or until cooked through. If you made larger meatballs they will take longer to cook. If you are unsure about whether or not your meatballs are done cooking, simply sacrifice the largest one you can find and see if it is still pink inside.

cooked meatballsNOTE: One of the recipes that I saw for meatballs while researching them said that you can freeze the raw balls on a cookie sheet then transfer them to a freezer bag once they are solid. My meatballs were so sticky that freezing them raw just seemed kinda strange so, I cooked all of mine then divided them into bags w/8 balls each. I am cooling them in the refrigerator as we speak, then will transfer them to the freezer once they have cooled. Now, next time I crave meatballs I can grab a bag out of the freezer and enjoy them rather than just sitting there thinking about them!

meatballs for the freezer

38 Comments

  1. Tracy P says:

    Could you freeze them after browning them before baking them? Thanks

  2. Dave says:

    We love these meatballs. This time I used 1/2 hot + 1/2 mild Italian sausage. That added a really nice bite. More than I expected eating them straight but mellows out with the sauce and spaghetti.

  3. Tiffany says:

    These are wonderful!! I’ve been trying to find a good meatball recipe for ages. I really think it’s the combination of ground beef and Italian sausage.. And the fresh parsley makes a huge difference! Thank you! :)

  4. Hi I didn’t have any onions surprisingly. I didn’t go grocery shopping and ran out. I used dried onions. Also dried parsley since I didn’t have any fresh parsley either. Would that be fine? I haven’t tried the meatballs yet. They are cooking in the oven. I’ll write a update on favor after dinner. I just needed other peoples opinions on using dry ingredients.

    • Hmm, I’ve never used dried onions, but in my opinion dried parsley doesn’t really come close to fresh. BUT, the parsley isn’t a huge element in this recipes, so that should be fine.

  5. Shaniqua says:

    Hey, you might want to know that this recipe does not import well with ziplist. Not sure why not, but it just imports the title, and the first ingredient, along with the photo.

    But I look forward to making these tonight!

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