With a Grateful Prayer and a Thankful Heart: Family Favorite Meatballs

Friday, March 25, 2011

Family Favorite Meatballs

 We all have our very favorite meatball recipe.
This is mine.

Without having Italian family heritage and no one to teach me or share a recipe I had to find a meatball recipe that we loved.

In over 40 years of marriage, raising four daughters and now with 13 grandchildren, it is important for me to have a great go-to recipe. I have tried many and liked lots of them. But, this one is our favorite.

 What I love best about these meatballs is that they are soft and tender. Instead of breadcrumbs to help bind the meatballs together, bread is softened with a little water and egg.

They can be browned in a skillet by frying but I usually bake them because it goes so fast and is less messy.

After cooking the meatballs, I toss them into a pot of sauce. I have a favorite jarred sauce but I also make (and freeze) this homemade recipe.
After simmering just a little more, everything is ready to serve with pasta or make sandwiches.

Follow this link for sauce recipe

This recipe is from my old Betty Crocker's Cookbook. 
I especially like to use potato bread because it makes them delicious.
Roll each meatball lightly so they are soft and tender and break easily with a fork.

I use a rounded coffee measure or a small ice-cream scoop to form the the mixture into balls without any rolling. I sometimes get a flat side to the meatball but they stay nice and soft. You can go ahead and shape them gently with your hands if you prefer.

The meatballs are best when browned in a pan before adding to the sauce to simmer.
But, they are still delicious when baked on a foil lined pan, in the over at 400 degrees for 15 minutes.

For a great in-a-hurry meal, make a batch and freeze in zip-top bag.
Thaw, simmer in your favorite sauce while cooking pasta and you have dinner fast!

For double duty, make a double batch and serve the next night on rolls for a delicious Meatball Sandwich/Sub. Two meals from one recipe. 

Italian Meatballs
source Betty Crocker Cook Book


4 slices bread
1/2 cup water
2 eggs
1 lb (85%) ground beef
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
2 Tbs parsley, snipped
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/4 tsp oregano
dash pepper

Soak 4 bread slices in 1/2 cup water 2 to 3 minutes; add 2 eggs and mix well. Mix with 1 pound ground beef (I use 85%), 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese, 2 tablespoons snipped parsley, 1 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano, crushed, and a dash pepper.

With wet hands, form meat mixture into small balls (about 24) Brown slowly in 2 tablespoons hot oil.  Add meatballs to sauce, simmer loosely covered for 30 minutes.

NOTE: keep at a gentle simmer and do not cook too long or the meatballs will not remain light and tender.

Makes 24 meatballs


Carol @ There's Always Thyme to Cook said...

They look fantastic, now you gave me a craving! I do the same, soaked bread instead of breadcrumbs, much moister!

Gloria (The Little Red House with the White Porch) said...

Greetings! I do mine with bread too! That's because that's how my mother did it. :) Yours in the photo look so delicious, I wish I had some right now!

Keri On said...


moreofhim said...

Oh, those sound so delicious! I think that's whats wrong with my meatballs-they don't stay soft! I'm sure the soaked bread helps to make these nice and moist, too. Thank you for sharing-I have the Betty Crocker Cookbook (since I've been married) and will use this recipe next time I make spaghetti!

God bless you - Julie

Mildred said...

We are on our way!!!

Lady Farmer said...

They sound fabulous! I will try mine with soaked bread next time!

Mary Lou said...

How doI gracefully admit that I've never made meatballs!
Now that I have a recipe, I can and will. Thank you!

Beth said...

Meatballs are such a basic, but your photo really makes them shine. Lovely!

Sue said...

These look so yummy, I have a grandson that would really love these as he could eat meatballs every day, well almost everyday. LOL.
Thank you for sharing.

Tink's Spin said...

I love this recipe, I am not a meat eater raely do I ever eat meat and I don't remember when I had meatballs, but the next time I cook for company I am making this, it looks yummy. maybe I won't wait for company. Is there such a thing as veggie meatballs, I wonder:)I am going to use this as one of my favorite recipe of the week , with a link. :)

Ann said...

Boy does that ever look good. I love meatballs. Not only are they delicious but easy to make and very versatile.

Life In a Little House said...

Oh that is one yummy looking picture wow!! thanks for sharing your recipe It is very close to my recipe only I do a gluten free version ~Wishing you a wonderful weekend ~Love Heather

NanaDiana said...

Lorraine- You and me,baby. I have been using that SAME recipe for years. It makes the best meatballs ever. We like the texture of them too!! xxoo Diana

Suzy said...

I'm going to try this recipe and use your oven method!

Donna Heber said...

Oh, this looks wonderful! Thank you for sharing the recipe with us.

Leann said...

Hi I soak my bread in milk. Just made 125 meatballs for my MIL's 70th b-day party this past weekend!

Not sure if the milk adds flavor - I'll try water the next time.

Enjoy your week!

Flourchild said...

Leann, the meatballs look very yummy! I love the close up shot of them with the noodles! I have never made homemade meatballs before. This recipe will be a good start! Thanks for sharing!

Vivienne said...

looks delish! i don't have a favourite meatball recipe yet so i might steal your one for now :)

BECKY said...

These sound wonderful gal! We usually just put the meat in the sauce! I haven't made my own meatballs in a long time! Might have to give it a whirl!!
Have a delightful week!


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