Italian Meatballs

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Who Doesn’t Love Italian Meatballs?

Italian Meatballs are the best comfort food! Simple, but very delicious recipe for Meatballs! These popular authentic Italian meatballs are browned then simmered in spaghetti sauce.

Meatballs are a classic comfort food that is loved by many. This versatile dish can be served as an appetizer, a main course, or even part of a sandwich! Not only are Meatballs delicious, but they are also easy to make and require very few ingredients.

In this blog post, we will also explore the history of Italian Meatballs, as well as share a recipe for an authentic Meatball dish. So, if you’re looking for an easy and delicious meal, then you’ve come to the right place. Who doesn’t love Meatballs?

Italian Meatballs have been a staple of Italian cuisine for centuries. The earliest recorded version of the recipe can be found in an Italian cookbook from the late 19th century, where it was referred to as pallottelle di carne. This recipe consisted of ground beef, garlic, onion, Parmesan cheese, breadcrumbs, and spices which were mixed together and shaped into balls.

The popularity of this dish spread quickly and soon it could be found all over Italy and beyond. It wasn’t until the early 20th century that the traditional tomato-based sauce that is now synonymous with meatballs began to appear in recipes.

Today, Italian meatballs are a beloved comfort food enjoyed by many. They are often served as an appetizer or as part of a main course meal, usually accompanied by spaghetti, but they can also be enjoyed on their own or paired with other sides such as mashed potatoes or rice.

No matter how they are prepared or served, one thing is certain: meatballs are always delicious!

Serve these Italian Meatballs with some broiled Cheesy Garlic Bread, homemade Ciabatta Bread or some crusty French Bread . Add in a garden fresh salad and what a perfect meal.

Not what you are looking for? Try these other excellent meatball recipes:


Italian Meatballs

Simple, but very delicious recipe for Meatballs! These popular authentic Italian meatballs are browned then simmered in spaghetti sauce. Thanks to Maria for sharing this 5-star family recipe!

  • Author: Anne Burrell – Food Network
  • Prep Time: :40
  • Cook Time: :15
  • Total Time: :55
  • Yield: 20 1x
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Oven / Stove Top
  • Cuisine: Italian


Units Scale
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large onion, 1/4-inch dice
  • Salt
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed and chopped
  • Pinch crushed red pepper
  • 1/2 pound ground beef
  • 1/2 pound ground veal
  • 1/2 pound ground pork
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup grated Parmigiano
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves
  • 1 cup bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup water
  • Marinara Sauce, recipe follows

Marinara Sauce

  • 1/4 cup Extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 pound diced pancetta
  • 2 large Spanish onions, cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • Kosher salt
  • 4 large garlic cloves, smashed and chopped
  • 4 (28-ounce) cans Italian plum San Marzano tomatoes


  1. Coat a large saute pan with olive oil, add the onions and bring to a medium-high heat. Season the onions generously with salt and cook for about 5 to 7 minutes. The onions should be very soft and aromatic but have no color. Add the garlic and the crushed red pepper and saute for another 1 to 2 minutes. Turn off heat and allow to cool.
  2. In a large bowl combine the meats, eggs, Parmigiano, parsley and bread crumbs. It works well to squish the mixture with your hands. Add the onion mixture and season generously with salt and squish some more. Add the water and do 1 final really good squish. The mixture should be quite wet. Test the seasoning of the mix by making a mini hamburger size patty and cooking it. The mixture should taste really good! If it doesn’t it is probably missing salt. Add more. Add more anyway.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  4. Shape the meat into desired size. Some people like ’em big some people like ’em small. I prefer meatballs slightly larger than a golf ball. Coat a large saute pan with olive oil and bring to a medium-high heat. Brown the meatballs on all sides. Place them on a cookie sheet and bake them in the preheated oven for about 15 minutes or until the meatballs are cooked all the way through. If using right away, add them to your big pot of marinara sauce. If not using right away, they can be frozen for later use. Serve with pasta and sauce or just eat them straight out of the pot! YUM!

Marinara Sauce

  1. Coat a large saucepot with olive oil and add the pancetta. Bring the pot to a medium-high heat and cook the pancetta for 4 to 5 minutes. Add the onions, season generously with salt and stir to coat with olive oil. Cook the onions for 6 to 7 minutes stirring frequently. The onions should become very soft and aromatic but have no color. Add the garlic and cook for another 2 to 3 minutes stirring frequently.
  2. Pass the tomatoes through the food mill. Be sure to pass all of the pulp through the holes leaving only the stems and the seeds, and be sure to scrape the pulp off of the bottom of the food mill. That’s all of the big money stuff! Add the tomatoes to the pot and rinse out 1 of the empty tomato cans with water and add that water to the pot (about 2 to 3 cups). Season generously with salt and TASTE IT!!!! Tomatoes take a lot of salt. Season in baby steps and taste every step of the way. Cook the sauce for 2 to 3 hours, stirring occasionally and tasting frequently.
  3. Use the sauce right away on pasta or for any other tomato sauce need. This sauce can also be cooled and stored in the refrigerator for a few days and freezes really well.


Meatball Tips

  • Be Gentle – If the meatballs are packed too tightly and compactly, they’ll turn out tough, rubbery, and chewy. Oil your hands so that the mixture won’t stick to them and gently and quickly form the meatballs.
  • Keep Things Cold – You want to keep the fat from melting and breaking down before you cook the meatballs, so keep your meat and ingredients as cold as possible. Make the mixture in a chilled bowl, and if you are adding precooked ingredients like onions, let them cool down completely before adding.
  • Make Ahead – The meatballs can be made up to two days ahead and gently reheated on the stove or in the microwave.


  • Serving Size: 4
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