Easy Baked Italian Meatballs

I LOVE meatballs. Seriously, what is it about a ball of meat and spices served simply on a toothpick or atop noodles of any kind that is just so comforting? The thing I usually don’t like about meatballs is the oil splatter they cause when frying in a skillet. So, I make these little guys in the oven— problem solved! Simply combine all of the ingredients, roll them into balls, place them on a baking sheet, set the timer, and BAM— homemade meatballs.

I think the oven gets a bad rap because of the time it takes food to cook in the oven versus the skillet. However, oven-cooking cleanup is basically zero as compared to stovetop-cooking, and I think we can all agree one of the hardest things about fitting cooking into a busy lifestyle is often the clean-up time.

Don’t get me wrong, both cooking methods are necessary and wonderful in their own ways, but for meatballs, the oven gets the job done just fine!

I usually serve these meatballs with gluten-free pasta, zucchini or carrots noodles, or on a sandwich (any meatballs sub lovers out there?), but they are equally as wonderful nestled in marinara sauce and served as an appetizer on a toothpick.

Easy Homemade Italian Meatballs 4

This recipe really came from my continual need to feed to my husband, as his food allergies are something to behold— wheat, dairy, corn, soy, and nuts. Yep, he’s tough to feed, but these check all the boxes! However, these meatballs are tasty regardless of your dietary concerns, so don’t worry— nobody will notice the “normal” stuff is missing.

Easy Homemade Italian Meatballs 5

Easy Homemade Italian Meatballs

Serves: 5-6 | Prep time: 15 min. | Cook time: 20-25 min. | Total time: 35-40 min. (see notes)

INGREDIENTS

  • ½ cup gluten-free breadcrumbs (or homemade breadcrumbs from gluten-free bread; for a grain-free option, see notes)

  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning

  • ½ teaspoon oregano

  • 2 teaspoons onion powder

  • ½ teaspoon pink Himalayan salt

  • ⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg

  • Pinch red pepper flakes

  • 2 cloves garlic minced (or 1 teaspoon pre-minced)

  • 1 teaspoon coconut aminos

  • ⅓ cup unsweetened plain milk of choice (I use almond or coconut)

  • 1 pound grass-fed ground beef

  • 1 large egg

  • Marinara sauce, for serving (I use Rao’s brand Marinara)

  • Optional: fresh minced parsley or basil (for topping), pasta of choice (for serving)

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper or foil.

  2. In a small, bowl, combine the breadcrumbs, Italian seasoning, oregano, onion powder, salt, nutmeg, minced garlic, red pepper flakes, coconut aminos, and milk. Let stand for 2 minutes.

  3. In a large bowl, combine the beef and eggs. Sprinkle in the breadcrumb mixture and mix with your hands until just combined.

  4. Use a cookie scoop or spoon to scoop out the meat mixture and roll into 2” balls.

  5. Place meatballs on baking sheet and bake for 20-25 minutes (depending on how big you make them), or until golden brown.

  6. Serve over pasta and with a side salad, or keep warm in a crockpot with marinara as an easy appetizer.

  7. Enjoy!

NOTES

  • Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days and in the freezer for up to 3 months.

  • For a grain-free option: replace the milk and breadcrumbs with 2 tablespoons coconut flour and 2 tablespoons milk of choice. Follow the rest of the recipe as it’s written, but reduce the baking time to 18-20 minutes.

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