Everyone loves these easy baked meatballs without bread crumbs. It's a quick and easy dump recipe that's perfect for weeknights or weekend meal prep!
Here's a quick and easy baked meatball recipe without breadcrumbs. If your family loves Italian meatballs, this gluten-free recipe for you. These savory tender meatballs with garlic and Italian herbs are smothered in a paleo and keto-friendly marinara sauce (from a jar!).
If you need a weekday meal in a hurry that's not a lot of work, you will love this easy meatball recipe that cooks in the oven.
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Here's what you'll need
This is a simple dump recipe – no chopping or pre-cooking needed! Here are the essential ingredients:
- Ground beef – we keep grass-fed ground beef from ButcherBox stocked in the freezer (you can read my review here). Pro tip: you can thaw ground beef in a bowl of cold water in about 30 minutes. Or if you’re planning ahead, just move it to the fridge to thaw the day before.
- Almond flour – super-fine almond flour substitutes for bread crumbs in this recipe making it gluten-free, keto, paleo, and Whole30-friendly. You can also substitute almond meal if that's all you have.
- Herbs and spices – a combination of Italian or Mediterranean herb blend (I use my homemade herbs de Provence) plus extra oregano, garlic powder, and sea salt provide the flavor. Optional: add a dash of crushed red pepper flakes if you like it hot.
- Eggs – the egg is the binder for this recipe and it's what makes the meatballs stick together and hold their shape.
- Keto marinara sauce – using a keto-friendly tomato sauce from a jar is one more shortcut that makes these simple keto meatballs perfect for easy dinners!
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How to make them
It couldn't be easier to make these meatballs without bread crumbs. Just mix together the egg, almond flour, herbs, and spices in a large bowl. Then mix in the ground meat.
Using a large stainless steel scoop (or ice cream scoop) is the best way to get the meatballs all the same size. Then gently roll the meat mixture to form a ball and set them in a single layer in a cast-iron frying pan or a rimmed baking sheet with sides high enough to hold the sauce.
Bake them in the oven at medium heat, 350 degrees, until just cooked through. Then cover them with sauce and put them back in the oven to heat up the sauce.
How to serve them
These beef meatballs are delicious served up by themselves or garnished with fresh parsley, but here are a few different ways to accompany them:
- For a super low carb meatballs and spaghetti dinner, make some zucchini noodles. Garnish with parmesan cheese or a vegan parmesan if you're avoiding dairy.
- For a quick and hearty pasta substitute, cook a spaghetti squash in your Instant Pot while the meatballs bake.
- For the most traditional option, try them with cassava spaghetti, penne, or fusilli. They are made with cassava flour so they are gluten-free and paleo, although higher in carbs. My whole family likes them and says they taste like regular pasta.
- Serve them with a simple tossed salad and Italian dressing.
Can you fry them?
Absolutely, brown the meatballs in a skillet with a little olive oil then add the sauce and simmer until cooked through.
Can you add ground pork?
You can substitute half of the ground beef for ground pork, or double the recipe and just use one pound of each to make a big batch.
Can you make turkey meatballs?
Yes, this recipe works with ground turkey with a slight modification. Since turkey has less fat, adding a small amount of diced cooked vegetables, like onions, peppers, or carrots, will help keep the turkey meatballs moist. Frozen mirepoix would be a good shortcut option here.
Can you freeze meatballs?
Yes! Meatballs can be frozen before or after cooking, and can even be frozen in the sauce. If you are freezing raw meatballs, place them on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and freeze until hard, then move them to a reusable freezer bag. Freeze cooked meatballs in a glass meal prep container. Simply move to the fridge for a day to thaw the meatballs.
More ground beef, pork, and turkey recipes
- Easy Keto Meatloaf Recipe (Paleo, Gluten Free, Whole30)
- Best Taco Meat Recipe (Keto, Paleo, Whole30)
- 21 Keto Ground Beef Recipes for Easy Dinners
- Easy Breakfast Sausage (Paleo, Keto, Whole30)
- Crock Pot Turkey Bolognese Sauce with Zucchini Noodles
Meatballs Without Bread Crumbs
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees and prepare a cast iron skillet or baking dish with avocado oil spray.
- Mix egg, almond flour, herbs and spices in a large mixing bowl. Mix in ground beef.
- Scoop, gently shape meatballs and arrange in pan. Bake for 15 minutes.
- Remove from oven and pour marinara sauce over the meatballs.
- Return to oven and cook for an additional 15 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 160 degrees and the sauce is simmering.