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Jan 29, 2006 03:18 PM

I am looking for a GREAT meatball recipe

  • c

also, what is the best beef to use? Chuck?

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  1. I like to use 1:1:1 beef:veal:pork. Recently saw ground buffalo at a store, might try that next time.

    7 Replies
      1. re: mnosyne

        It is IF you overcook it...buffalo are strictly grass-fed...and as I understand it, it does NOT need to be cooked as thoroughly as commercial ground beef.(yuk...sorry, but with all of the e-coli and other food scares recently, I've just about given up on USDA ground beef...consider the fact that the cattle **may be** eating parts of other cattle! totally disgusting and totally unacceptable for USDA to allow us to eat that stuff and for it to even be sold!!!! <stepping down off soapbox>)

        1. re: Val

          It has a much lower fat content than grain-fed beef, so it's not really suitable for something like meatballs, though, which will be dry and tough -- there's no such thing as a medium-rare meatball!

          1. re: Ruth Lafler

            I get 85% ground beef that is not at all dry and is perfect for meatballs from White Oaks Pastures (Georgia) which is 100% grass-fed operation - they are the most humane cattle ranchers I have ever come across - incredibly ethical. No feeding other cows to cows here! Or "pink slime" ( - gross.

            You can do ethical grass-fed beef meatballs that are delish. Please don't fall back on the atrocities of grain-fed because you think grass-fed will be too dry

            1. re: theamusedbouche

              @amusebouche: good information...thank you!!!!

      2. re: semmel

        I like to make something I call "Chicken Meatball Tika Marsala" where I make chicken meatballs, and mix 2 cups chicken marsala sauce with 2 cups tikka masala sauce, a melted stick of butter plus yogurt or sour cream to taste.


        1. re: Bookwormgal

          ok you got my attention.
          could you plz explain more. not familiar with chx Marsala sauce or tikka Marsala sauce. what do you do with the sauces? > pour over chicken meatballs? how do you make the meatballs? ingreds plz. also where do I buy those (2) sauces? TIA

      3. There was an article in the San Francisco Chronicle on 1/18 describing a chicken meatball recipe made at Oliveto Restaurant in Oakland. I haven't tried it yet, but it's intriguing.

        Name of article is

        FOWL PLAY
        How to bring out the best in America's favorite meat

        If you search for "oliveto chicken meatball" it should take you to the recipe. The Chron's website, unlike the NYT, is free with no registration...yet.

        1. Here is a GREAT recipe from Rao's restaurant in NY


          4 Replies
          1. re: Marge

            oh Rao's.
            I'm thinking major love affair with the place, although I've not been fortunate enough to ever get in or get them to answer their phone :(

            here's how I'm making mine.
            "Mexican meatballs"

            1 lb ground beef [85/15]
            1/2 cup ground tortilla chips
            1/2 cup of my just made salsa
            1 yard jalepeno chopped fine
            1 egg
            2 T fresh chopped oregano
            finely shredded mozzarella cheese
            1 T melted butter
            2 T sour cream
            1 T water
            salt and pepper to taste
            mix all together but not too much cause otherwise they'll go all golf ball like.
            gently fry in pan with 1 T butter and 1 T olive oil.

            the salsa I just made that I'll use in this recipe is:
            Lot's of tomatoes
            1 yard very small little red pepper it's SUPER HOT
            salt and pepper
            lemon juice & lime juice
            2 small yard red onion
            3 yard garlic cloves
            2 T yard fresh cilantro
            1 tsp olive oil

            It's good not the best I've ever made but good.

            1. re: iL Divo

              so so good.
              over buttered noodles, yumm

            2. re: Marge

              Hey Marge. Your right this is the best recipe for meatballs on this site. I am right now cooking a big pot of meatballs and sausage with there recipes... HA. Robyn in NYC

              1. re: Marge

                As far as I go...Rao's recipe is the best!!!!!

              2. I used to use some bread crumbs with the mixture, then friend suggested using oatmeal instead - it makes a world of difference - try with the oatmeal!

                1. passed on to me by my wonderful brother-in-law Ken:

                  5 slices day-old French bread, crustless
                  2# ground chuck
                  1 c. freshly grated Parmesean
                  1 lg onion finely chopped
                  1/2 c chopped parsley
                  1 t salt
                  1/2 t pepper
                  1 t oregano
                  2 t dred basil
                  3 cloves garlic minced
                  3 eggs
                  3 T olive oil

                  Tear bread into pieces and whirl in processor to make 2 cup lightly packed crumbs. Place chuck in large bowl, breaking it into pieces. Sprinkle crumbs and seasonings over the chuck, lightly whisk eggs only to blend and add to meat, then mix all with your hands. Shape into 1 1/2" balls and brown, uncrowded, in a large skillet. Turn and brown all sides. Remove to a plate while you deglaze the pan with a little red wine or stock, which then goes into your sauce. Place meatballs into sauce and simmer slowly for 15 minutes.

                  Sometimes I toss some brown mushrooms into the processor first, then add the crumbs and the garlic, cloves, and parsley to get the flavors well mixed before adding to the meat. The mushrooms add moisture, so the meatballs are softer when cooked, and very tender. They're more like the texture of my mom's veal meatballs, which are very tender and juicy. You can sub some of the chuck with veal if you like. It's pricey, but makes a spectacular meatball.

                  Good cooking!