Baked Meatballs

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5 from 1 review

These tasty baked Italian meatballs take just 30 minutes from start to finish and are packed with delicious flavors of herbs, Parmesan cheese, and garlic. The best part is that they're baked in the oven which means totally hands-off cooking time for you! Whether served with spaghetti, as a hearty sandwich filling, or enjoyed on their own with marinara sauce, these Italian meatballs promise to transport your taste buds straight to Sunday night dinner with the family!


Units Scale
  • 1/2 cup Italian breadcrumbs
  • 2 tablespoons whole milk (poured over breadcrumbs)
  • 16 oz. ground beef (85/15)
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoons grated yellow onion (squeeze the juice out of them)
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 egg yolk
  • Kosher salt
  • fresh cracked pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees and place a cooling rack on top of a foil-lined baking sheet.
  2. Pour milk over breadcrumbs in a small bowl and let them soak for a bit while you prep the other ingredients.
  3. Add Parmesan cheese, onion, parsley, Italian seasoning, garlic, egg yolk, and a few large pinches of salt and pepper to a large bowl. Add milk-soaked breadcrumbs as well. Mix until well combined.
  4. Add ground beef to the bowl and use your hands to thoroughly combine the ingredients but do not over-mix.
  5. Use a cookie scoop to scoop meatballs. Lightly oil hands and roll meatballs into round, uniform meatballs. Place them on the cooling rack on the baking sheet.
  6. Bake meatballs for 20-25 minutes or until they are cooked through.
  7. Serve with your favorite red sauce and spaghetti and enjoy!



  • If you like the flavor of a meatball simmered in marinara sauce, you can par-bake the meatballs - bake them until they are almost done but not quite cooked through - and then finish by simmering them in spaghetti sauce on the stove until they're cooked through. That way the delicious meatball flavor will be imparted into the red sauce as well.
  • This recipe will make about 32-34 meatballs if you're using a 1-tablespoon cookie scoop. It will make about 20 meatballs if you use a 2-tablespoon cookie scoop.
  • If your family is opposed to chunks of veggies or herbs in their meatballs, you can use a food processor to finely mince the veggies and herbs so that they are not easily detectable.
  • You can also saute the onion in olive oil for a few minutes, then add the garlic and cook for another 30-60 seconds to add another dimension of flavor.
  • Squeeze the juice out of the onions after you grate them or finely mince them. This will ensure that you get all that delicious onion flavor without the excess moisture. Too much moisture in the meatballs will cause them to fall apart so this is an important step.
  • Soak the breadcrumbs. Don't skip this step! I know this may seem a little strange, but I promise you, it makes a difference. Milk adds extra moisture and turns the breadcrumbs into a bit of a paste that helps hold all the other ingredients.
  • Don't overmix the meat mixture. Overmixing will lead to a tough texture. I find that combining everything but the ground beef first ensures that the meatball mixture doesn't get overmixed. Once everything is well combined, then add the ground beef and mix until just combined. This will keep your meatballs tender and juicy.
  • Use a cookie scoop to form perfectly uniform meatballs. You can eyeball them if you like but a cookie scoop will give you meatballs that are all the same size so that they cook evenly.
  • Don't roll the meatballs too tightly. Lightly oil your hands and then use them to gently roll the scoops into round, uniform meatballs. If you roll them too tightly and compactly it will affect the texture as well - leading to a meatball that is tough, chewy, and potentially even rubbery. Using the cookie scoop will help with the rolling process because it gives you the perfect size ball and it's already almost rolled for you.
  • Spray or brush the cooling rack with oil so that the meatballs don't stick.
  • For easier cleanup, line the baking sheet with parchment paper or tin foil.