Italian-Style Beef & Pork Meatballs


This foolproof meatball recipe makes enough to stash away for another day. They're great to have on hand for easy dinners (see 3 ways to use them, below), but also make good impromptu appetizers.

Italian-Style Beef & Pork Meatballs
Photo: Jacob Fox
Active Time:
20 mins
Total Time:
35 mins

What's the Best Meat for Meatballs?

We use equal parts of lean ground beef and ground pork for this recipe, which gives the meatballs the right balance of flavor and texture. Feel free to use ground chicken or ground turkey instead of ground pork, but make sure to bake the meatballs until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the center registers 165°F.

Is It Better to Bake or Fry Meatballs?

There are many ways to cook meatballs. You can pan-fry them, simmer them in sauce, cook them in a slow cooker or bake them in the oven. We bake the meatballs on two large rimmed baking sheets in the oven, and line the rimmed baking sheets with foil to make cleanup quick and easy.

How to Make Italian-Style Beef & Pork Meatballs Ahead

After baking the meatballs, allow them to cool completely. Freeze cooked and cooled meatballs in a single layer on a clean large rimmed baking sheet. Once the meatballs are frozen, transfer them to an airtight container. Freeze the meatballs for up to 3 months. Reheat from frozen in a 350°F oven for about 25 minutes.

Additional reporting by Jan Valdez


  • 3 large eggs, lightly beaten

  • 1 cup finely chopped onion

  • ¾ cup panko breadcrumbs, preferably whole-wheat

  • ¾ cup chopped fresh parsley

  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese

  • 3 large cloves garlic, minced

  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning

  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt

  • 1 teaspoon ground pepper

  • 1 ½ pounds lean ground beef

  • 1 ½ pounds ground pork


  1. Position racks in upper and lower thirds of oven; preheat to 450°F. Line 2 large rimmed baking sheets with foil and coat with cooking spray.

  2. Combine eggs, onion, panko, parsley, Parmesan, garlic, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Add beef and pork. Mix gently with your hands until just combined (do not overmix). Using a generous 2 tablespoons each, shape into 48 meatballs. Place 1 inch apart on the prepared baking sheets.

  3. Bake the meatballs until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the center registers 165°F, about 15 minutes.


2 large rimmed baking sheets


Try these meatballs in one of these easy dinner recipes.

Meatball Pesto & Gnocchi Bake:

Cook 1 lb. gnocchi in 1 Tbsp. olive oil in a large broiler-safe skillet over medium heat until starting to brown, about 5 minutes. Add 18 meatballs and 1/3 cup each pesto, ricotta and water; stir until well-coated. Spread the mixture into an even layer and top with 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese and 3 Tbsp. breadcrumbs. Broil on high until golden brown, 1 to 2 minutes. (Serves 6)

Meatball Stuffed Shells:

Cook 18 jumbo pasta shells in boiling water. Whisk 1 cup ricotta, 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese, 1 large egg and a pinch each of salt and pepper in a bowl. Spread 1 cup marinara sauce in a 9-by-13-inch baking dish. Stuff 1 of 18 meatballs and 1 Tbsp. of the ricotta mixture into each shell; arrange in the baking dish, open-side up. Top with 1 cup sauce and 1/4 cup Parmesan. Cover with foil. Bake at 375°F until the sauce is bubbly, about 30 minutes. Uncover; bake for 10 minutes more. (Serves 6)

Meatballs over Cheesy Polenta:

Bring 4 cups water to a boil in a medium saucepan over high heat. Slowly whisk in 1 cup cornmeal and reduce heat to maintain a simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the polenta is thickened and tender, about 20 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in 1 1/4 cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese, 4 sliced scallions, 1 Tbsp. butter and 1/4 tsp. each salt and pepper. Serve 16 hot meatballs over the polenta. (Serves 4)

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

216 Calories
10g Fat
6g Carbs
26g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 12
Serving Size about 4 meatballs
Calories 216
% Daily Value *
Total Carbohydrate 6g 2%
Dietary Fiber 1g 4%
Total Sugars 1g
Protein 26g 52%
Total Fat 10g 13%
Saturated Fat 4g 20%
Cholesterol 118mg 39%
Sodium 450mg 20%

Nutrition information is calculated by a registered dietitian using an ingredient database but should be considered an estimate.

* Daily Values (DVs) are the recommended amounts of nutrients to consume each day. Percent Daily Value (%DV) found on nutrition labels tells you how much a serving of a particular food or recipe contributes to each of those total recommended amounts. Per the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the daily value is based on a standard 2,000 calorie diet. Depending on your calorie needs or if you have a health condition, you may need more or less of particular nutrients. (For example, it’s recommended that people following a heart-healthy diet eat less sodium on a daily basis compared to those following a standard diet.)

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a special diet for medical reasons, be sure to consult with your primary care provider or a registered dietitian to better understand your personal nutrition needs.

Related Articles