• Laura Cognetti

Just Like Grandma's Meatballs

Updated: May 28

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Growing up we had a big Sunday dinner every week at 2pm. I remember my Grandpa sitting at the head of the table and my Grandma in the kitchen cooking. There was always a huge bowl of pasta, and right beside it sat a very large bowl of different meats. There were pork ribs, neck bones, sausage and meatballs. Everything was delicious, and there was never a recipe - she just knew what she was doing. It always tasted exactly the same- simply divine. I have been able to get my pasta sauce recipe down, I can make it with my eyes closed and I don't measure anything. My meatballs though, I've tried making them a million different ways. Sometimes they come out great, other times not so much. When I sat down to craft this recipe I made sure to measure each item precisely so that when I made a good batch I could duplicate it and make sure that moving forward it's the recipe I use. I've tried different variations of meat, lean beef, fatty beef, turkey, pork - the only thing I didn't experiment with was veal because I refuse to eat it. The recipe below is one that I'm really proud of, and I hope that you love it too. Thanks for following along~ LC


Gather together all of your ingredients. If you have a block of Parmesan like I do, grate it directly into a glass measuring cup until you hit 1/4 of a cup. Mince garlic - I like to use this handy garlic press.


Combine the breadcrumbs and the milk and let sit for about 10 minutes so that the breadcrumbs absorb all of the milk. Next, add remaining ingredients to your bowl. Gently fold together with a wooden spoon, then use your hands to mash together well. Be careful not to overwork this mixture, it will make the meat very tough and give your meatball a lead balloon type of feeling. Roll out your meatballs to about 1.5 inches in diameter. You should get a total of 10. Place them on an aluminum foil lined baking sheet and spray with olive oil spray to prevent sticking. Bake for 20 minutes at 375 degrees.


Gently remove meatballs from the tray and serve with fresh marinara. Alternatively, you can also put meatballs directly into pot of hot pasta sauce to absorb some of the flavor prior to serving. Enjoy!


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Just Like Grandma’s Meatballs

½ lb. ground pork

½ lb. lean ground beef (93/7)

¼ cup Italian bread crumbs

¼ cup whole milk

1 large egg

¼ cup fresh grated Parmesan cheese

1 garlic clove, minced

1 tsp salt and pepper blend

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Combine breadcrumbs and milk and set aside to rest for 10 minutes.

2. Lightly beat the egg, combine to breadcrumb mixture along with the remaining ingredients. Use a wooden spoon to gently incorporate, then use your hands to ensure mixture is uniform. Try to not over work the meatball mix as it will make your meatballs tough.

3. Roll into 1 ½ in diameter balls and place on a baking tray lined with aluminum foil and sprayed with olive oil cooking spray. Cook in the oven for 20 minutes.

4. Top with freshly cooked marinara sauce and enjoy!


See nutritional information here!

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