Skip to Content

Perfect Italian Meatballs

Perfect Italian Meatballs

This post may contain affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

 Italian Meatballs – there’s really nothing more delicious and homey than a plate full of spaghetti topped with homemade meatballs and sauce.

We’ve been making meatballs this way for years, inspired by the secret recipe of a family of Italian chefs we met in San Diego. Of course, we’ve made our own modifications over time.

The real secret for moist, fluffy meatballs is to finish cooking them by poaching them in a good homemade tomato sauce.

We will usually make a big batch of meatballs, brown them (but not fully cook them), and freeze them in batches.

They can be quickly thawed and finished cooking in the sauce in no time.

Add the recipe to your collection on Pinterest or bookmark for later!

Perfect Italian Meatballs

Visit our food finds/recipes section to view our full collection of recipes inspired by our time cooking together and traveling around the world.

This recipe will yield approximately 40 meatballs

Perfect Italian Meatballs

Perfect Italian Meatballs

Classic Italian Meatballs! These fluffy meatballs combine both pork and beef and are browned and then poached to perfection!

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes


  • 1 pound (454 grams) ground beef
  • 1/2 pound (227 grams) ground veal
  • 1/2 pound (227 grams) ground pork
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1 medium onion
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup (100 grams) Parmesan cheese
  • 3 tablespoons (12 grams) fresh chopped parsley
  • 1 1/2 cups (66 grams) Italian bread crumbs
  • 1/2 (118 ml) cup red wine
  • 1 cup (237 ml) water
  • 1 cup (237 ml) olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. Mince garlic, onions, and parsley in a food processor or blender. The idea is get the flavor of these ingredients to permeate the meatballs, not to have chunks of onion or garlic in the meatballs.
  2. Mix beef, veal, pork, garlic, onion, eggs, cheese, wine and parsley in a large bowl, until thoroughly mixed.
  3. Fold in the breadcrumbs, adding water to keep the consistency very moist, but still able to form balls that will hold their shape.
  4. Form meatballs approximate one and half inches in diameter.
  5. Brown the meatballs either in a frying pan, on a baking sheet in the oven.
  6. Cook the meatballs only until browned, not fully cooked. Remove from pan.
  7. Add meatballs to sauce, and simmer for approximately 30 minutes or until fully cooked.

Nutrition Information



Serving Size


Amount Per Serving Calories 122Total Fat 8gSaturated Fat 2.2gProtein 9.1g

Here are some addition Italian inspired recipes you might enjoy.

If you love meatballs, try this recipe for Bulgarian Meatball Soup, Supa Topcheta. Simply Delicious!

Skip to Recipe