The Best Oven Baked Meatballs Recipe

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The Best Oven Baked Meatballs

Indulge in the epitome of comfort food with our recipe for The Best Oven Baked Meatballs. These savory delights are a testament to the art of perfectly seasoned, moist, and flavorful meatballs that boast a golden-brown exterior.

Baked to perfection in the oven, this recipe eliminates the need for stovetop frying, making it a hassle-free yet delectable choice for any meal. Whether served with pasta, nestled in a sub, or enjoyed on their own, these meatballs promise a burst of Italian-inspired goodness in every bite. Join us on a culinary journey as we unravel the secrets behind The Best Oven Baked Meatballs, ensuring a dining experience that’s both comforting and delicious.

The Best Oven Baked Meatballs Recipe

The Best Oven Baked Meatballs Recipe


For the Meatballs:

  • 1 pound ground beef (or a mix of beef and pork)
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • Salt and black pepper to taste

For the Tomato Sauce:

  • 1 can (28 oz) crushed tomatoes
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • Salt and sugar to taste

For Baking:

  • Olive oil (for greasing)


1. Preheat the Oven:

  • Preheat your oven to 400°F (200°C). Grease a baking sheet with olive oil.

2. Prepare the Meatball Mixture:

  • In a large bowl, combine ground beef, breadcrumbs, grated Parmesan cheese, chopped parsley, milk, egg, minced garlic, dried oregano, dried basil, salt, and black pepper.
  • Mix the ingredients until well combined. Be cautious not to overmix, as it can result in dense meatballs.

3. Shape the Meatballs:

  • With damp hands, shape the mixture into meatballs of your desired size. Place them on the prepared baking sheet, ensuring they are evenly spaced.

4. Bake the Meatballs:

  • Bake in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes or until the meatballs are browned and cooked through. The internal temperature should reach 160°F (71°C).

5. Prepare the Tomato Sauce:

  • While the meatballs are baking, prepare the tomato sauce.
  • In a saucepan, combine crushed tomatoes, minced garlic, dried basil, dried oregano, salt, and a pinch of sugar to balance the acidity.
  • Simmer the sauce over medium heat for 15-20 minutes, allowing the flavours to meld.

6. Combine and Serve:

  • Once the meatballs are done, transfer them to the tomato sauce.
  • Gently coat the meatballs in the sauce, ensuring they are well covered.

7. Garnish and Enjoy:

  • Garnish with additional chopped parsley and grated Parmesan cheese.
  • Serve the Best Oven Baked Meatballs over pasta, in a sub, or on their own as a delightful appetizer.

8. Tips and Variations:

  • Experiment with different ground meats or a meatball mix for varied flavours.
  • Add a pinch of red pepper flakes to the meat mixture for a hint of heat.
  • For a cheesy twist, insert a small cube of mozzarella into the centre of each meatball before baking.

Elevate your comfort food experience with The Best Oven Baked Meatballs. These juicy, flavorful bites are not only easy to make but also a versatile addition to various dishes. Whether nestled in a bowl of spaghetti or enjoyed in a sandwich, these meatballs are bound to become a family favourite. Buon appetito!

A Little History Lesson

Meatballs, a culinary marvel that transcends cultural boundaries, have a history as diverse as the flavors they embody. Originating in various forms across different regions, the concept of combining ground meat with herbs and spices dates back centuries.

One of the earliest mentions of meatballs can be traced to ancient Rome, where a cookbook attributed to Apicius provides recipes for minced meat mixed with bread soaked in wine and various seasonings. This precursor to modern meatballs showcased the inventive spirit of Roman cuisine.

Throughout the Middle Ages, various iterations of meatballs emerged across Europe. In the Arab world, kofta became a staple, featuring ground meat mixed with spices and herbs. As trade routes expanded, so did the popularity of these delectable morsels, evolving to suit local tastes.

The arrival of Italian immigrants in the United States during the late 19th and early 20th centuries played a pivotal role in the widespread adoption of meatballs in American cuisine. Italian-American households began incorporating meatballs into pasta dishes, establishing the iconic marriage of spaghetti and meatballs that remains a classic today.

In Sweden, köttbullar became a national dish, served with lingonberry sauce and creamy gravy, showcasing the adaptability of meatballs to diverse culinary traditions.

From the streets of Morocco to the kitchens of China, meatballs have undergone countless transformations, each influenced by the unique ingredients and culinary customs of their respective regions. Today, meatballs stand as a testament to the global appeal of comfort food, uniting people around the world through a shared love for these versatile, flavorful creations.

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