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Grandma’s Italian meatball recipe is the ultimate comfort food to share with the family! Tender and juicy meatballs simmered in a simple yet rich tomato sauce and placed over spaghetti noodles or the pasta of your liking.


On our wedding day, I made a very special vow to my husband… “I promise to nurture, listen, comfort, and feed you, making sure to cook your grandmother’s famous meatballs at least once a month.”


Like most Italian recipes there were no specific measurements.Grandma Rose刚刚有一个简单的酱汁和肉丸的成分和方法,其余的是直觉。多年来我多次制作了牛肉和猪肉肉丸子。有些结果好,有些不是那么多,我实际上从来没有自己写过一个食谱,所以每次都有不同。我正处于尽可能靠近奶奶的意大利肉丸食谱与粗暴的批评者,老公子。


Before and after photo of meatballs on a foiled-lined sheet pan

For this recipe, aPanade用于使地面肉类额外潮湿和嫩。组织是淀粉和液体的混合物;可以使用淀粉(面包,沼泽,饼干)和液体(牛奶,酪乳,酸奶,股票,水)的任何组合。根据您的口味偏好,各种成分的组合可以增加或多或少的味道。

However, for this meatball recipe, I don’t soak the breadcrumbs in additional liquid before adding it to the meat mixture like I normally would for a panade. That’s because the size of the breadcrumbs are so fine, that the moisture from the eggs andground beefis enough to be absorbed by the bread and activate the natural starches. During the simmering process, the starches further bind to the liquid and swell to lock in the juices.

Grandma’s Rose advised to always broil the meatballs beforesimmering他们在酱汁中。这是增强肉丸的味道和质地的一体化步骤。奶奶肯定是一个聪明的女人!没有意识到,她告诉我确保毛泽东反应is done and executed just right. It’s the process of creating hundreds of new flavors and aromas in the dish.


A meatball sliced in half with a fork on a bed of spaghetti noodles

The texture is the most critical part of nailing the recipe. The right ratio of meat-to-breadcrumb and fat for flavor is crucial. If there are too little or too manybreadcrumbs,纹理关闭(坚韧或海绵)。在这种尝试中,我的丈夫告诉我这些是我曾经做过的最好的肉丸,而不是太破旧了十年的实验!

我发现at a ratio of 1 pound beef, 1/2 cup breadcrumbs, and 1 large egg is perfect. I prefer using an 80% lean beef to 20% fat for my meat. This ratio gives a nice rich flavor and meaty texture without being too tough. The consistency is easy to cut through and remains fork tender.

The sauce takes time


To enhance the meaty flavor of the sauce, the ingredients are carefully selected. Foods that are rich in glutamates like onions, garlic and tomatoes serve to boost the savory flavors of the meatballs. The minced garlic and onion aresauteedwith tomato paste to add a hint of sweetness and depth to the sauce. This builds layers of flavor!


Jason never forgets to remind me that the sauce needs to be thick so that it can cling to the noodles. I like to please, so the sauce gets concentrated over the long cooking period. It’s easy to adjust the consistency with a little water or beef stock to your liking at the end of cooking.

Of course, we can’t forget to boil some pasta to serve with the meatballs. Jason has an uncanny instinct to tell when spaghetti is cooked perfectly and al dente. My husband is a meatball and sauce connoisseur, the supreme judge to ensure anything Italian is prepared just right in our kitchen! Good thing this recipe makes for generous leftovers, and I swear the meatballs taste better the next day!

More meatball recipes


When the muscle fibers of meat proteins are ground into smaller pieces, sticky soluble proteins are released when cut and strongly hold the meat together. After the meat is mixed and then cooked, the proteins tighten and contract which causes large amounts of moisture to be squeezed out. This often results in meatballs reducing in size and becoming dry or tough if breadcrumbs or a panade is not added to the mixture.



Grandma's Italian Meatball Recipe

Grandma's Italian meatball recipe is the ultimate comfort food to share with the family! Tender and juicy meatballs simmered in a simple yet rich tomato sauce and placed over spaghetti noodles or the pasta of your liking.
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准备时间 30mins
Cook Time 2hrs
Total Time 2hrs30mins
Servings 14meatballs
Course 主席
Cuisine Italian


Tomato Sauce

  • ¼cupolive oil
  • ½cupyellow onions,剁碎
  • 4大蒜丁香,剁碎
  • 7压碎罐装西红柿,Cento品牌或San Marzano Tomatoes
  • 6ounces番茄酱,如果需要更薄的一致性,请使用较少
  • 2茶匙s犹太盐,add more to taste

Grandma’s Meatballs

  • 2poundsground beef,80%的瘦肉达20%脂肪
  • 2large eggs
  • 2丁香大蒜,finely minced
  • ½cupyellow onion,finely minced
  • 1茶匙black pepper
  • 2茶匙s犹太盐
  • ½cup帕尔马干酪,新鲜磨碎
  • 1cupbreadcrumbs,Italian style or plain
  • fresh basil,装饰用


Tomato Sauce

  • 在中低温和炒菜和大蒜中加热橄榄油,直至洋葱是半透明的,3分钟。
  • 搅拌番茄酱并煮1分钟。加入碎番茄和盐,搅拌和煨30分钟。
  • Season tomato sauce with more salt to taste.

Grandma’s Meatballs

  • 将所有成分结合在一个大碗中并用手混合。
  • Cook a small test piece, taste for the correct seasoning level, correct seasoning if needed.
  • Roll meatballs to the size of a large egg, about ⅓ cup or 3 ounces in weight.
  • Line a baking sheet with foil, evenly space the meatballs on the sheet.
  • Set the oven rack to the lower-middle position.
  • Broil on high and cook the meatballs until browned about 10 minutes.
  • Turn over and cook for an additional 2 to 3 minutes.
  • 将肉丸添加到西红柿酱。
  • Cover, with the lid slightly ajar and simmer on low heat for at least 1 ½ hours, checking and stirring every 20 minutes, or as needed.
  • 从酱汁中取出肉丸并放入一个单独的碗中,盖住以保持温暖。
  • Mix the sauce; adjust consistency with small amounts of water if too thick.
  • Taste sauce and adjust with salt and pepper as desired.
  • Garnish with fresh basil and Parmesan cheese.

Recipe Video


  • You can adapt this recipe for a 6-quart slow cooker. Add the sauce ingredients to the slow cooker and broiled meatballs. Cook on high 3 hours, or 6 hours on low.
  • MAKE IT GLUTEN-FREE: Use gluten-free breadcrumbs or almond flour.

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Grandma's Italian Meatball Recipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories216. Calories from Fat 99
Fat11g 17%
Saturated Fat 4g 20%
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 4g
Cholesterol44毫克 15%
810mg 34%
19毫克 1%
碳水化合物9G. 3%
Fiber 1g 4%
Sugar 2g 2%
蛋白19G 38%
Vitamin A250IU 5%
Vitamin C4.1mg 5%
120mg 12%
Iron0.5mg. 3%

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我是一个烹饪学校毕业,食谱作者nd a mom who loves croissants! My passion is creating recipes and sharing the science behind cooking to help you gain confidence in the kitchen.

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167 Comments发表评论或审查

  1. 迈克G.


  2. Gina

    Thank you so much for this great recipe and the science tips! This was my first time making meatballs with a panade and the difference was so noticeable. My family loved them. Only thing I did differently was I made the panade with all the ingredients except the meat. It made everything incorporate nicely so that all of the meatballs had the same texture and taste. I always broiled them, but never followed up with the extra cooking time in the sauce. It was usually just a quick coat and serve, but I am a believer! The sauce was much more flavorful even with using the canned tomatoes. Thanks so much for your expertise and knowledge.

  3. Katharine

    The meatballs were delicious! I did use the panade as I thought it sounded like a nice touch. And I since I had it on hand, I used ground venison!

  4. Jeannie

    How many servings does this recipe make? Nutrition facts say per serving, but it doesn’t say how many.
    I’ve made these several times and we love them!

  5. Jeannine

    Made these meatballs the other night two ways – one using the 80/20 ground beef and the other using a plant based “meat”. Both turned out amazing! Thank you for your recipe. I’ll be making it again, and again.

      • jeannine

        Yes – I used Impossible Burger. They turned out a little tougher than the beef. Other than the slightly darker color to the Impossible Burger they were VERY difficult to tell the difference once sauce was on them. The flavor from the spices and cheese was there.

        • betway必威排球

          Thank you for the feedback! I tried the impossible ground meat and like it as an alternative, I will have to try it with the meatball recipe next and see if my husband can tell the difference.

  6. Carole Arborio

    Tried this recipe for the first time. Followed directions to a tee! They are the perfect size, taste & tenderness to use in sauce with pasta, subs or to munch on…love em’.

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