Prepare to elevate your meatball game to a whole new level with our Cheesy Oven-Baked Meatballs. These succulent spheres of flavor are a celebration of all things savory and cheesy, promising a burst of indulgence in every bite. Whether you’re planning a family dinner or a casual gathering with friends, this recipe is a guaranteed crowd-pleaser. Join us on a culinary adventure as we guide you through the intricacies of crafting these cheesy delights that will leave everyone asking for more.
For the Meatballs:
1 pound ground beef
1/2 pound ground pork
1 cup breadcrumbs
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
Salt and pepper to taste
2 large eggs
For the Sauce:
2 cups marinara sauce
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Fresh basil for garnish
Preheat the Oven: Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Combine Ingredients: In a large mixing bowl, combine the ground beef, ground pork, breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, mozzarella cheese, parsley, garlic, oregano, basil, onion powder, salt, pepper, and eggs. Mix until all ingredients are evenly incorporated.
Shape the Meatballs: Take a small portion of the mixture and roll it into meatballs, approximately 1.5 inches in diameter. Place them on the prepared baking sheet, leaving space between each meatball.
Bake to Perfection: Bake the meatballs in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes or until they are golden brown and cooked through.
Sauce and Cheese Topping:
Prepare the Sauce: While the meatballs are baking, heat the marinara sauce in a saucepan over medium heat until warmed through.
Combine Cheese: In a bowl, mix the shredded mozzarella and grated Parmesan cheese for the topping.
Assemble and Broil: Once the meatballs are cooked, spoon a bit of marinara sauce over each meatball and sprinkle the cheese mixture on top. Broil for 3-5 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
Garnish and Serve: Remove the meatballs from the oven, garnish with fresh basil, and serve them hot.
Cheese Selection: Experiment with different cheeses like cheddar, provolone, or gouda for a unique flavor profile.
Customize the Size: Adjust the size of the meatballs based on your preference. Smaller meatballs work well for appetizers, while larger ones are perfect for main courses.
Make-Ahead Option: Prepare the meatballs in advance and refrigerate until ready to bake. This makes meal planning a breeze.
Add chopped sun-dried tomatoes and feta cheese to the meatball mixture for a Mediterranean-inspired flavor explosion.
Incorporate diced jalapeños or crushed red pepper flakes into the meatball mix for those who crave a bit of heat.
Replace the marinara sauce with teriyaki sauce, and add minced ginger and green onions to the meatball mix for an Asian-inspired twist.
Keto and Low-Carb Versions
Swap breadcrumbs for almond flour, and use a sugar-free marinara sauce. Ensure the cheese is full-fat for that keto-friendly richness.
Reduce breadcrumbs or opt for a low-carb alternative, such as crushed pork rinds. Choose a marinara sauce with lower sugar content.
In the realm of comfort food, Cheesy Oven-Baked Meatballs stand tall as a beacon of flavor and satisfaction. From the juicy meatball center to the gooey, golden cheese topping, each element plays its part in creating a culinary masterpiece. Whether you’re adhering to a keto lifestyle, seeking a low-carb option, or just indulging in the richness of classic flavors, these meatballs cater to all palates. So, gather your ingredients, preheat that oven, and embark on a journey of cheesy delight that will have your taste buds dancing in joy. Your kitchen is about to become the stage for a symphony of flavors that will leave a lasting impression on everyone lucky enough to savor these Cheesy Oven-Baked Meatballs.