Italian Ground Beef Meatballs Casserole

➡️ Italian ground beef meatballs are some of the most popular dishes in this European country and are therefore cooked quite often, especially in the northern half of the peninsula. This is because they are very tasty and pretty easy to prepare, so no wonder they are a staple of Italian cuisine.

➡️ However, there are more Italian meatball types. Some Italian meatballs, known as polpettes, are often served sauceless and are much smaller than the meatballs you’re probably used to. Many traditional Italian meatballs are made with equal parts meat and soaked bread, as well as other ingredients such as eggs and vegetables.

➡️ As you probably already know, Italian beef meatballs are traditionally served in a typical Italian tomato sauce. However, some chefs have found an ingenious way to turn the recipe into a ground beef casserole. Italian gastronomy is in a continuous evolution, so it is not surprising that creative ideas always appear and transform classic recipes into new culinary masterpieces.

➡️ Italian ground beef meatballs in a tomato sauce is a classic comfort food that is loved by many. This hearty and flavorful dish is perfect for a cozy family dinner or a special occasion. The juicy meatballs are seasoned with a blend of herbs and spices, and then simmered in a rich tomato sauce until they are tender and bursting with flavor.

➡️ The origins of this dish can be traced back to Italy, where meatballs have been a staple in traditional Italian cuisine for centuries. The use of ground beef mixed with breadcrumbs and other ingredients to make meatballs became popular during the Middle Ages, and has since become a classic dish in Italian-American cuisine.

➡️ When it comes to making Italian meatballs, the key is to use high-quality ingredients and to season them well. The addition of herbs and spices like oregano, basil, and garlic add depth of flavor and make these meatballs truly special.

➡️ Serve these beef meatballs over your favorite pasta, with a side of crusty bread for dipping in the flavorful tomato sauce. This dish is sure to please the whole family and become a staple in your recipe collection.

➡️ When it comes to variations, there are endless possibilities for tweaking this classic recipe to suit your personal taste preferences. For example, you can add different herbs and spices to the meat mixture, such as basil, oregano, or rosemary, to create a unique flavor profile. Alternatively, you can mix different ground meats together, such as pork and beef, for a richer and more complex taste.

➡️ When it comes to serving, Italian ground beef meatballs in tomato sauce are a versatile dish that can be enjoyed in a variety of ways. One classic way to serve them is over a bed of spaghetti or other pasta, with a generous ladle of tomato sauce and a sprinkle of grated Parmesan cheese. You can also serve Italian ground beef meatballs as an appetizer or party snack, either on their own or with toothpicks for easy serving.

➡️ If you’re feeling creative, you can use Italian ground beef meatballs in a tomato sauce as a base for other dishes. For example, you can make meatball subs by sandwiching the meatballs and sauce between two slices of bread and adding some melted mozzarella cheese. You can also use the meatballs as a topping for pizza or flatbread, along with other ingredients like sliced mushrooms, bell peppers, and olives. With a little imagination, the possibilities are endless!

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How to Make Italian Ground Beef Meatballs from Scratch

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Italian Ground Beef Meatballs Casserole

Italian Ground Beef Meatballs

There's nothing quite like a hearty bowl of Italian ground beef meatballs in a rich and tangy tomato sauce. This classic dish is the ultimate comfort food and can be enjoyed on its own, with a side of pasta, or even as a sandwich. With my authentic Italian Ground Beef Meatballs recipe, you'll be able to recreate this delicious dish in the comfort of your own kitchen.
My recipe features tender and juicy meatballs made with a combination of ground beef, breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, and Italian seasoning, all simmered in a flavorful tomato sauce. The key to making these meatballs extra delicious is to use high-quality ingredients and to let them cook slowly in the sauce, allowing all the flavors to meld together.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 50 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Servings 6 servings


  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 cup breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp salt and to taste for the sauce
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper and to taste for the sauce
  • 2 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 can (28 oz) crushed tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup red wine (optional)
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • fresh basil, chopped (optional)


  • Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C).
  • In a large bowl, combine the ground beef, breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, eggs, minced garlic, salt, black pepper, parsley, oregano, basil, and red pepper flakes (if using). Mix everything together with your hands until well combined.
  • Roll the mixture into balls about the size of a golf ball.
  • Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chopped onion and minced garlic and sauté for about 3-5 minutes, until the onion is translucent.
  • Add the crushed tomatoes, red wine (if using), sugar, salt, and pepper to the skillet. Stir everything together and let the sauce simmer for 5-10 minutes.
  • Place the meatballs on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until they are cooked through.
  • Add the cooked meatballs to the skillet with the tomato sauce and let everything simmer together for an additional 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Garnish with fresh chopped basil (if using) and serve hot.


Cooking Tips:
  • For a more flavorful meatball, try mixing a combination of ground beef, pork, and/or veal.
  • Be sure to handle the meat mixture gently when forming the meatballs, as overworking the mixture can result in tough meatballs.
  • To prevent the meatballs from sticking to the baking sheet, you can lightly grease the parchment paper with cooking spray or olive oil.
  • You can also pan-fry the meatballs in a skillet instead of baking them, but make sure to cook them thoroughly on all sides.
  • If you like your tomato sauce a bit sweeter, you can add more sugar to taste. Conversely, if you prefer a spicier sauce, you can increase the amount of red pepper flakes.
Keyword Italian beef meatballs, Italian ground beef meatballs, Italian meatball recipe, Italian meatballs

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Cooking Italian Ground Beef Meatballs Is Really Easy!

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➡️ I just like to cook traditional Italian ground beef meatballs because they have some of the flavors I especially like, such as beef and tomato sauce. Italian meatballs are a classic Italian dish, made with hand-shaped meatballs that are sauteed to perfection and served with marinara sauce and, sometimes, spaghetti. If you need additional info, read more on Italian meatballs! I also recommend you to try more delicious meatball recipes available on this website such as meatball bake.

What are Italian ground beef meatballs?

Italian ground beef meatballs are a delicious and easy-to-make meal that consists of ground beef formed into balls and baked in the oven.

What are the ingredients for Italian ground beef meatballs?

The ingredients for traditional Italian ground beef meatballs include ground beef, breadcrumbs, egg, milk, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning.

How long does it take to make Italian ground beef meatballs?

It takes about 30 minutes to make Italian ground beef meatballs from start to finish.

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