Meatloaf Meatballs

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Meatloaf Meatballs are tasty, bite-sized meatloaves with a sweet ketchup sauce. Baked meatballs are a quick and easy weeknight dinner or holiday appetizer!

Craving comfort food like Classic Meatloaf, but short on time? You’ll love this easy, hearty Main Dish made in just 30 minutes!

Meatloaf Meatballs on plate with mashed potatoes and green beans

MEATLOAF MEATBALLS

Meatballs are an ultimate jack-of-all-trades recipe – they can be dinner, an appetizer, lunchbox meal prep, or a snack. You can throw meatballs in a hoagie for a sandwich or keep them in a crockpot with sauce for an easy party dish. There are almost as many ways to make meatballs as there are ways to serve them.

These Meatloaf Meatballs are comfort food meets convenience. They have the same tasty flavors as your favorite meatloaf recipes you grew up with but in a bite-sized portion perfect any time you need a meaty dish quick. In less than 30 minutes, you can have a main dish, appetizer, or meal prep for later. You may never go back to making regular meatloaf again!

Meatloaf Meatballs trio of prep steps

You can serve Meatloaf Meatballs just like you would a traditional meatloaf with classic sides like Mashed Potatoes and Green Beans. Leftover meatballs would make the ultimate meatloaf sub on Garlic Bread and smothered in Marinara Sauce and provolone cheese. Portion out meatballs with Brown Rice and freeze up to 3 months for a ready to serve healthy meal prep.

EASY SIDE DISH RECIPES:

Tips for Making Meatloaf Meatballs

  • You don’t want to handle the meat mixture too much, or you will end up with tough, dry meatballs. You want mix just enough to combine your meatball ingredients.
  • Rolling Meatloaf Meatballs is certainly fun, especially for kids, but you can handle them too much trying to get them all the same size. Use a cookie scoop to make Meatloaf Meatballs uniform so they all cook evenly and keep you from packing the meat mixture too tight.
  • Another way to keep from over-mixing or handling your meat mixture too much is to mix the dry ingredients first and whisk the egg a few times before adding everything together.
  • If you want to lessen the onion flavor, sauté the minced onion and garlic for a couple minutes, until just soft and fragrant, before adding to the meatball mixture.

Meatloaf Meatballs in baking dish

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VARIATIONS ON MEATLOAF MEATBALLS

  • Meat: You can use a traditional meatloaf mixture of 1 part ground beef and 1/2 parts ground veal and ground pork. To use leaner meat, like ground turkey or ground chicken, add 1 tablespoon olive oil to keep the meat juicy.
  • Bacon: Wrap your meatballs in a slice of raw bacon or add cooked bacon crumbles to the meatball mixture. Instead of the meatloaf sauce, try maple syrup and dijon mustard as a glaze with the bacon.
  • Seasonings: Add up to 1/2 cup minced veggies like celery, carrots, or green bell peppers. Other classic meatloaf seasonings you can add are Italian herbs, onion soup mix, and parsley.
  • Sauce: Double the meatloaf sauce and reserve half for serving, either with the meatballs in a crockpot or heat the sauce on the stovetop. Use your favorite Barbecue Sauce in place of ketchup, or use half ketchup and half BBQ sauce.
  • Breadcrumbs: Any breadcrumbs will work, like panko breadcrumbs or Italian breadcrumbs. Try other meat binders like quick oats, diced bread soaked in milk, or crushed crackers. For low carb Meatloaf Meatballs, use crushed pork rinds.

Slow Cooker Meatloaf Meatballs

  • Spray slow cooker insert with cooking spray.
  • Double the sauce recipe ingredients and mix in a medium bowl. Pour half the sauce into the crockpot.
  • Prepare and shape the meatballs. Nestle meatballs in the sauce in slow cooker.
  • Top meatballs with remaining sauce. Cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours, or on high for 3-4 hours.
  • Optional: Transfer meatballs to baking sheet and broil for a few minutes before returning to sauce to serve.

MORE DELICIOUS MEATLOAF RECIPES

HOW TO STORE MEATLOAF MEATBALLS

  • Serve: These Meatloaf Meatballs can be at room temperature for up to 2 hours before they should be stored. You can keep Meatloaf Meatballs warm in a slow cooker for up to 4 hours.
  • Store: Cool Meatloaf Meatballs to room temperature before storing in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. 
  • Freeze: Place Meatloaf Meatballs on a baking sheet and freeze for one hour. Transfer frozen meatballs to a sealed container and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge before reheating Meatloaf Meatballs in the oven on low.

close-up of Meatloaf Meatballs in baking dish

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Meatloaf Meatballs

  • Yield: 25 servings
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Course: Appetizer
  • Cuisine: American
  • Author: Sabrina Snyder

Meatloaf Meatballs are tasty, bite-sized meatloaves with a sweet ketchup sauce. Baked meatballs are a quick and easy weeknight dinner or holiday appetizer!

Ingredients

Meatballs:

  • 2 pounds ground beef , 90/10
  • 1/4 yellow onion , minced
  • 2 cloves garlic , minced
  • 2 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup breadcrumbs
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper

Meatloaf Glaze:

  • 1/3 cup ketchup
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon yellow mustard
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

Instructions

Note: click on times in the instructions to start a kitchen timer while cooking.

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl mix the ground beef, onion, garlic, Worcestershire sauce, eggs, breadcrumbs, salt and pepper until just combined.
  3. Roll mixture into 25 meatballs and place into 9x13 baking dish.
  4. Bake for 18-20 minutes.

  5. Turn oven onto broil.
  6. Glaze with sauce then broil until the sauce caramelizes, about 1 minute. (If you prefer not to broil, cook at 450 for 5 minutes)

Nutrition Information

Yield: 25 servings, Amount per serving: 108 calories, Calories: 108g, Carbohydrates: 5g, Protein: 8g, Fat: 6g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Cholesterol: 38mg, Sodium: 202mg, Potassium: 148mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 3g, Vitamin A: 35g, Vitamin C: 1g, Calcium: 18g, Iron: 1g

All images and text © for Dinner, then Dessert.

Keyword: Meatloaf Meatballs
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