These delicious Greek meatballs, also known as keftedes are packed with flavor. They’re light, juicy, and simply delicious. Super easy to make and they freeze beautifully. In this recipe, I cooked them under the broiler instead of pan-frying and saved myself a lot of cleanup. Make a double or even triple batch of these to have on hand for those busy days.
Keftedes are traditionally pan-fried. They’re delicious that way however, afterward there’s tons of oil splatter everywhere and a huge mess to clean up. After lots of meal prepping throughout last year, I discovered the broiler method. What a lifesaver!! I just lay the meatballs on baking trays, brush the tops and sides with some olive oil, and pop the trays under the broiler for under 15 minutes. Voila! Delicious meatballs, still juicy, and golden, and no mess to clean up. It’s a win-win!
My biggest tip is to follow the recipe as it is written. I’ve used this recipe for years and everyone who tries these meatballs says the same thing: These are the best meatballs I’ve ever tasted! So, if it ain’t broke, why fix it? Right? The only ingredient that I sometimes leave out is the Parmesan cheese. I don’t always have it on hand so it can be omitted without sacrificing taste and/or texture.
If you’re trying to make the keftedes gluten-free, swap out the breadcrumbs for 1-2 mashed potatoes or with gluten-free breadcrumbs. The mashed potatoes are delicious in the meatballs. I’ve used that method several times when I was out of breadcrumbs. As for the Gluten-free breadcrumbs, I’ve never tried them but many of my viewers on Youtube have and tell me that they work well. Let me know if you’ve tried them and how they turned out.
Try not to broil the keftedes longer than 15 minutes or they will become dry.
These keftedes freeze beautifully. make a double or even a triple batch for those busy days when you want to eat a home-cooked meal and are very short on time.
- form the meatballs and place them on baking trays that have been lined with parchment paper or plastic wrap. This will help remove the meatballs from the tray once they’re frozen.
- place the trays in the freezer until the meatballs are frozen solid.
- Transfer the frozen uncooked meatballs to freezer bags and store them in the freezer up to 3 months.
- when ready to broil, place the meatballs onto a baking tray and let them thaw then, brush with olive oil and broil them for up to 15 minutes.
Recipes with Meatballs
- KEFTEDES YOUVETSI: ONE-PAN BAKED MEATBALLS & ORZO
- KEFTEDES SAGANAKI: GREEK STYLE MEATBALLS IN A TOMATO & FETA SAUCE
- Soutzoukakia Smyrneika with the Best Mashed Potatoes: Greek Baked Meatballs
- Serve the meatballs with Tzatziki
Watch the Video
- 2 pounds ground beef
- 1 large onion
- 4 garlic cloves
- 1 and 1/2 cups Panko bread crumbs
- 1 cup whole milk
- 2 eggs, slightly beaten
- 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese, optional
- 1 bunch fresh parsley, thick stems removed
- 2-2 and 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper, or to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes or more
- olive oil for brushing on top
Add the garlic cloves to a food processor and pulse until finely chopped.
Cut the onion into quarters and add it to the food processor. Pulse until finely chopped, not ground.
Place the ground beef into a large mixing bowl. Add the onion and garlic.
Cut the bottom stems off of the parsley and add the parsley to the food processor. Save the stems for stock. Pulse until finely chopped and add the parsley to the mixing bowl.
Add all of the remaining ingredients except for the oil. Knead together until incorporated.
Form the meatballs and place them onto baking trays. Walnut sized (or golf ball sized) meatballs will yield about 60.
Brush the tops of the meatballs with olive oil.
Set the oven to the Broil setting and place an oven rack on the top section so that it is closest to the broiler element.
Place the tray under the broiler and cook for 12-15 minutes or until golden.
Serve with tzatziki or marinara sauce or use the meatballs in your favorite recipe. Enjoy and kali orexi!
- form the meatballs and place them on baking trays that have been lined with parchment paper or plastic wrap. This will help remove the meatballs from the tray once they're frozen.
place the trays in the freezer until the meatballs are frozen solid.
Transfer the frozen uncooked meatballs to freezer bags and store them in the freezer for up to 3 months.
when ready to broil, place the meatballs onto a baking tray and let them thaw then, brush with olive oil and broil them for up to 15 minutes.
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