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12 Best Meatball Recipes and Tips

These are the best meatball recipes as well as tips and tricks for getting the best results. You’ll find both appetizers, soups and main dish recipes.

Collage photo of the meatballs included in this post


Meatballs are an incredibly versatile food. Of course there’s traditional spaghetti and meatballs, but there are so many other kinds of meatballs recipes and so many ways to prepare them. 

Best method for insuring meatballs stay together

  • Use only 1 egg per pound of meat.
  • Use bread crumbs, either dried, such as panko, or fresh bread torn into small pieces.
  • Grated or finely crumbled cheese, such as parmesan or feta.
  • Make sure you’re using the right ratio of bread crumbs. If you use too little the meatballs will fall apart and too much will make them will make them dense

How to keep meatballs moist and tender

  • A small amount of of milk, cream or half and half will help keep meatballs moist.
  • Soaking dried or fresh breadcrumbs in one of those liquids will also help keep meatballs both moist and tender.
  • After soaking, squeeze out any excess liquid.
  • When you’re ready to mix the meatballs, your hands are the best tool. Mix the meat mixture just until the ingredients are combined, this will insure that the meatballs are tender.

Methods for cooking 

  • Baking –  This is and easy hands off method and insures that the meatballs are evenly cooked through.
  • Frying –  This is a great method if you want a nice crusty sear. Either fry them until they’re cooked through or  sear them just until they’re browned and finish cooking in a sauce, such as tomato sauce or gravy. The benefit of this method is that it will impart a meaty flavor into the sauce.
  • Poaching – With this method, add the uncooked meatballs, without searing into a cooking sauce or a soup. Meatballs cooked in this manner turn out especially tender.

How to freeze and then reheat meatballs

  • Meatballs can be frozen after cooking for later use. The best way to freeze them is to put them on a baking sheet lined with parchment or foil and freeze in a single layer. Once they’re frozen, put them into a zip top storage bag and store in the freezer until ready to use.
  • To reheat the meatballs, add them to a sauce over medium low heat and simmer until cooked through.
  • If you’re not putting them in a sauce, add a small amount of water or broth (about 1/2 inch) to a skillet, cover and bring to a simmer. If the meatballs are frozen, they’re take about 10-15 minutes to heat up. If they’re defrosted, it should take 5-10 minutes to heat through.


Asian Sweet and Sour Meatballs

Meatballs plated with chop sticks with platter of meatball in the background

Lamb Curry Party Meatballs

Lamb Curry Party Meatballs are a perfect appetizer for entertaining. They’re so easy to make and the flavor is incredible. Your guests will love them.

Plated meatballs in the forefront and cast iron skillet with meatballs in the background

General Tso’s Chicken Meatballs

General Tso’s Chicken Meatballs are an easy, healthier version of the traditional fried Chinese takeout favorite. It has all of the flavor and none of the guilt. Whether you serve them over rice or on their own as a party appetizer, they are absolutely delicious.

Finished meatball displayed in a cast iron skillet

Classic Swedish Meatballs

This Swedish meatball recipe is a classic recipe with a flavorful mix of spices and a deliciously creamy sauce.  We love them on their own as an appetizer, but they’re also delicious served over mashed potatoes or egg noodles.

Swedish meatballs displayed in mini cast iron skillets

Instant Pot Cranberry Barbecue Meatballs

Not only are these Instant Pot cranberry barbecue meatballs easy to make, they also have amazing flavor that comes from a simple two ingredient sauce. They are a hit at any gathering.

Meatballs plated with cocktail toothpicks along with a glass of wine and meatballs in a serving dish


Italian Mini Chicken Meatball Soup

This soup is  full of veggies and flavor with just a slight spicy kick. It’s also ready in 30 minutes, making it a perfect weeknight meal.

Close up of the soup being served in a bowl along with bread

Osso Buco Soup with Veal Meatballs

This soup has all the amazing, rich flavors of traditional long cooking veal osso buco in a quick cooking dish that will have dinner on the table in under 45 minutes. Which makes this doable for a weeknight dinner.

Osso buco soup shown serve in a bowl.

Main Dish

Classic Spaghetti and Meatballs

Spaghetti and meatballs plated and served with wine

Easy Baked Meatballs

These easy baked meatballs are a snap to make and are amazingly flavorful. They’re so versatile you’ll want to stock your freezer with a double or even triple batch. 

Baked meatballs tossed in BBQ sauce and plated.

Orange Chicken Meatballs

Orange Chicken Meatballs are a healthier version of traditional orange chicken with fewer calories and fat but all of the same great flavor. They’re quick and easy to make, which makes them good for any night of the week.

Orange chicken meatballs plated on a bed of rice with one meatball picked up with chopsticks

Lamb Meatballs with Tzatziki Sauce

No need to go out for take out when these Greek inspired lamb meatballs with tzatziki sauce are are so easy to make and give a nod to traditional lamb gyros.

lamb meatballs on a serving platter with onion, cucumber and tzatziki sauce, along with warm naan bread wrapped in a napkin

Meatball Pizza

 This pizza is so incredible. With homemade meatballs and a crispy, chewy crust it’s pizza perfection. Once you try it you’ll want every night to be pizza night.

Pizza sliced into eight pieces and sitting on a pizza peel

Here are even more meatball recipes to try