This simple and easy Meatball Recipe is filled with ground beef and pork, seasoned to perfection and then baked in the oven until tender and juicy.

Easy Meatball Recipe in marinara sauce, topped with parmesan cheesepinterestWhat Makes Them The Best?

The best meatballs are tender and juicy when you bite into them, filled with aromatic flavors and baked in a hot oven to seal everything in a nice golden brown crust. Homemade meatballs are actually really easy to make and one of those recipes that I love making with my kids. We gather around the bowl of meat, rolling meatballs while we laugh and tell stories. It can be very therapeutic.

Ingredients Needed

  • Ground Beef and Ground Pork – using fresh (not previously frozen) meat will produce the best meatballs.
  • Garlic – mince your garlic nice and small so it cooks up inside the meatballs.
  • Onion powder – using onion powder instead of raw onions keeps this recipe quick and helps the texture of the meatballs.
  • Eggs – the eggs help to bind the meatballs and give them that spongy bite.
  • Breadcrumbs – use plain or Italian flavored depending on your taste preference.
  • Italian seasoning
  • Fresh Parsley or Basil – use based on seasonality, but make sure to finely chop!
  • Milk – this keeps the meatballs moist and juicy

Ingredients needed to make Homemade Meatballs

How To Make –

It can be very tempting to want to buy cooked meatballs, but once you try this homemade recipe, you’ll be able to taste the difference, and become a meatball-making-convert!

  • Combine Meats and Other Ingredients – add the ground beef, ground pork, garlic, onion powder, eggs (lightly beaten), breadcrumbs, Italian seasoning, salt, pepper, fresh parsley and milk to a large bowl.
  • Use Clean Hands To Mix – gently toss mixture together with clean hands just until ingredients have combined. If you have an aversion to touching raw meat, you can use a wooden spoon or wear gloves. Take care not to overwork your ingredients as this can cause tough meatballs.
  • Roll Into Balls – coat your hands with non-stick spray to easily roll the meat mixture into evenly shaped 1 tbsp balls. Lay meatballs on a baking sheet at least 1 inch apart.

Meatballs unbaked on a tray ready for the oven

How To Bake In Oven-

Baking meatballs is so much easier than frying because it’s less mess and you can get them all done at the same time!

  • What Temperature Do Meatballs Bake At? We’re baking at a high temperature of 400 degrees F. This helps to lock in those juices and keep the meatballs tender with a golden crust.
  • Arrange your meatballs about 1 inch apart on two lightly greased baking sheets (about 30 meatballs per baking sheet).
  • Bake in the upper and lower thirds of your oven for 10 minutes, turn meatballs over, then return pans to the opposite racks in the oven and continue cooking another 10 to 12 minutes, until meatballs are cooked through.

Golden brown meatballs baked in the oven on baking sheet

Can I Make Them In Advance?

Absolutely! These Italian Meatballs are fantastic for making ahead of time and storing in the fridge (up to 5 days) and freezer (up to 3 months).

These baked meatballs reheat very easily in marinara sauce on the stovetop or you can pop them on a plate and microwave in 1 minute intervals until heated through.

Tender and juicy meatballs tossed in homemade marinara sauce.

Why Are My Meatballs Tough?

Milk is the key ingredient here to keep your meatballs nice and moist. We’re also using eggs to keep all the ingredients bound together, while keeping that bouncy bite to it. If you’re still having issues with tough meatballs, here are some things to keep in mind…

  • Don’t overwork your meatball mixture or your meatballs can become tough. It’s best to mix just until the ingredients come together.
  • Coat your hands with non-stick spray or oil to easily roll the meatballs without getting your hands sticky.
  • I use this handy cookie scoop to even portion out my meatballs to about 1 tablespoon size balls.
  • Rotate your meatballs in the oven once you flip them to get an even cook.

Meatballs paired with spaghetti and classic marinara sauce.

What To Serve With

The most traditional way to eat meatballs is with Marinara Sauce and freshly cooked spaghetti. I mean, how can you go wrong with that classic combination? Here are some of my favorites to pair with it…

Meatball and spaghetti twirled on fork.

More Recipes To Try:

You’re going to love these classic Italian Meatballs!

A close up of a bowl of food, with Meatball
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5 from 8 votes

Easy Meatball Recipe

This simple and easy Meatball Recipe is filled with ground beef and pork, seasoned to perfection and then baked in the oven until tender and juicy.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time22 mins
Total Time42 mins
Course: Main Dish
Cuisine: Italian
Servings: 15
Calories: 167 kcal
Author: Shawn


  • 1 lb. lean ground beef
  • 1 lb. ground pork
  • 2 tsp minced garlic
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup Italian breadcrumbs
  • 1 tbsp Italian seasoning
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped fresh parsley, or 1 tbsp dry
  • 1/2 cup milk


  • Adjust racks in oven to upper and lower thirds. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. and coat two large baking sheets with non-stick spray.
  • Combine the meatball ingredients in a large bowl and use your clean hands to gently massage the meat mixture together. Don't over-mix or the meatballs can become tough.
  • Scoop meat mixture into 1 tbsp balls and roll with lightly greased hands. Arrange on baking sheet about 1 inch apart, with about 30 meatballs on each baking sheet.
  • Bake both pans of meatballs at the same time, one on the top third of the oven and one on the lower third. Bake for 10 minutes, then flip the meatballs and return pans to opposite racks in the oven. Continue baking for an additional 10 to 12 minutes, or until the meatballs are browned nicely and reach 165 degrees internally. Enjoy!
Serve meatballs tossed with my homemade Marinara Sauce for a delicious combination.
FREEZER OPTION - these meatballs freeze very well! Let cool completely before storing in an airtight container and freezing up to 3 months. Simply add frozen meatballs to sauce and heat or microwave until heated through.


Serving: 4meatballs | Calories: 167kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 14g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 63mg | Sodium: 272mg | Potassium: 236mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 111IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 41mg | Iron: 2mg
Keywords: Baked, Beef, Dinner, Easy, Italian Meatballs, Pasta, Pork
DID YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE?don't forget to share a picture and mention @iwashyoudry on Instagram or tag #iwashyoudry!


Baked Italian Meatballs

About the author

Shawn is the Owner and Creator of I Wash You Dry. She loves to create and share simple, family-friendly recipes. Mom to 5 adorable children and dwells in the desert of Southern Utah.
16 Responses
  1. Arpita Patel

    5 stars
    need these to be gluten free so I’m going to swap out the breadcrumbs for oatmeal.
    Do you think I should add more liquid?
    I’ll report back how they come out for anyone else interested. 🙂

    1. Shawn

      If you’re able to use a food processor to quickly blend up the oatmeal that would probably give it a better texture. As for the amount of liquid, I’m not sure… I would start with the 1/2 cup and see how the mixture looks. If it’s really dry, give it another tablespoon or so. Let us know how it goes!

  2. Olivia

    5 stars
    Thanks for all the tips. I never knew using previously frozen meat would make a difference. Definitely going to use fresh next time. The onion powder makes more sense too. I will be trying your meatball recipe.

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Shawn Syphus

Hi, I’m Shawn and I’m a busy mom of five; pretending to live on a budget. I love to cook, and explore new recipes, but they have to be quick and easy with as few dishes as possible.

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