Our beef meatballs are delicious on a roll as a sandwich, with pasta, or topped with Parmesan cheese as a main course.
There are a few key steps for executing this recipe properly:
- To make your meatballs light and airy, soak the bread in milk.
- Over-mixing will make meatballs dense and tough.
- Avoid searing too many meatballs at once, or they’ll grey instead of nicely brown. Sear in batches of two to three if your pot isn’t large enough.
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 40 minutes
- 1 ½ pounds ground beef
- 5 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped (2 tablespoons)
- 1 small yellow onion, peeled and finely chopped (1 cup)
- 5 slices bread, crusts removed
- 1 cup whole milk
- ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 2 tablespoons bread crumbs
- 3 eggs
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 3 cups tomato sauce
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- Trim both ends of the onion with a small knife, remove the peel, and finely chop into 1/8-inch pieces. Trim the root end off of the garlic cloves with a small knife, remove the peel, and chop finely.
- Grate the Parmesan cheese using a microplane grater, or a grater with small, fine holes. Thoroughly beat eggs with a whisk for 10 seconds. Cut the crusts off the bread and discard. Tear the bread into one-inch pieces for about two cups of bread. Place the bread in a small bowl and add the milk.
- In a large mixing bowl, add the ground beef, onion, garlic, Parmesan cheese, eggs, bread crumbs, salt, and pepper. Squeeze the milk out of the bread, and add to the ground beef. Discard the milk.
- Using your hands, lightly mix the ground beef until the ingredients are all incorporated. Roll the meat mixture into large balls — between the size of a golf ball and a tennis ball.
- Place a wide four to six-quart pot on the stove on medium heat and add the olive oil. When the oil starts to simmer, add half of the meatballs to the pot and cook them on all sides until lightly browned.
- Remove the meatballs from the pot and repeat the last step with the second half of the meatballs. Drain the oil from the pot and place all of the meatballs back into the pot in an even layer. Pour tomato sauce over the meatballs, cover the pot, and cook over low heat for 30 minutes.