We love freezer meatballs! On Ryan’s 30th birthday he requested that I make him meatballs. Not just any meatballs. Giant meatballs. Because I’ve never been able to back down from a challenge, I made giant meatballs. He loved them! Here’s how they turned out. It’s hard to tell, but they were HUGE!
Ever since that fateful birthday, meatballs have become a regular in the meal roundup for our family. Even our kids love them. I make them at least once a month, sometimes more often. As a side note, Ryan’s 30th was also where I made this infamous cake fail. I might have cried about how awful it looked. My baking has come a long way since then. 😉 The frosting usually doesn’t have to hold chunks of the cake together. Anyway…let’s get back to those meatballs.
Meatballs are versatile
You can use meatballs for pretty much anything. Need a quick appetizer? How about a sandwich? Meatballs can do it. Here’s a few meal ideas for these freezer meatballs.
- Appetizers. Generously coat meatballs with sweet and sour, Teriyaki, or barbecue sauce. Spear those juicy balls of goodness with a toothpick and arrange on a nice tray.
- Italian meatballs subs. Place meatballs onto a sub bun. Smother the meatballs with your favorite marinara sauce and mozzarella/Parmesan cheese.
- Barbecue meatball sandwiches. This is the same concept as an Italian meatball sub. Place the meatballs onto a bun and add barbecue sauce.
- Spaghetti and meatballs. It’s a well-loved classic. Top cooked spaghetti with spaghetti sauce, meatballs, and cheese.
- Swedish meatballs. Smothered in a creamy sauce, these meatballs are typically eaten on top of mashed potatoes or rice.
Looking for other easy appetizers? Try these: Crock Pot Chicken Wings Recipe, Texas Caviar, and Battered French Fries
As much as I like the taste of meatballs, I love that you can make meatballs ahead of time and freeze them for busy nights. Quickly warm up your freezer meatballs in the microwave or oven and you can add them to your favorite family dishes. Having meatballs in the freezer will easily save you 30 minutes of time on a busy night.
To get started, gather your ingredients. The recipe that I’ve included here is for a basic meatball recipe. But feel free to experiment with extra spices as you like. For example, you could add a teaspoon of Italian seasoning if you are using the meatballs in an Italian dish.
Combine your ingredients in a large bowl. Just dump them in and mix everything thoroughly with clean hands. I find it helpful to have a 9″x 13″ pan ready to go so after mixing I can start shaping my meatballs immediately. It’s a pain to wash my hands in between steps just to grab a pan. Most people probably reason that out pretty well, but for some reason I tend to do this almost every time.
This recipe makes about 20, 1-1.5 inch meatballs. I don’t usually bother measuring them out. I simply pull out 20 portions and try to make them even. But if we are being honest, there’s not really a right or wrong way to shape meatballs.
Cooking your meatballs
Bake at 400°F for 20 minutes. Let cool for a few minutes. Serve in pasta, sandwiches, or stand alone.
If you’d like to freeze the meatballs, wait for your pan to cool to room temperature. Loosen up the meatballs so they aren’t sticking to the bottom of the pan. Place in freezer. Once frozen, remove the meatballs from the pan and place in a freezer safe container or Ziploc bag. Or you could do what I do and just throw all of them in a bag before they’ve cooled down. But they might stick to one another once frozen. Don’t forget to label it! You can keep the meatballs in the freezer up to 3 months.
- 1 pound ground beef
- ½ cup dry bread crumbs
- ¼ cup milk
- ½ teaspoon Worchestershire sauce
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 1 egg
- Mix all the ingredients in a large mixing bowl.
- Shape the mixture into twenty meatballs.
- Place the meatballs in an ungreased 9×13 pan.
- Bake at 400°F for 20 minutes. Let cool for a few minutes. Serve in pasta, sandwiches, or stand alone.
- Freeze leftovers for up to 3 months.
Do you love meatballs and would you ever eat a giant meatball? Yeah, me too! Happy meatballing!