Oven Baked Mini Meatballs

These Oven Baked Mini Meatballs are easy to make, super versatile, and ready in less than 30 minutes! Try these basic meatballs as an appetizer with a side of bbq sauce for dipping or serve them with your favorite pasta and marinara sauce.

Oven Baked Mini Meatballs in a white bowl with a spoon and fresh tomatoes next to the bowl.

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Are you a fan of meatballs?  I feel like you are either a meatball person or you're not.  My husband?  He could take them or leave them.  Not me, though. I am most definitely a fan of the meatball.  This is my 5th meatball recipe on the blog, so that kind of proves it right there.

See, that's the thing.  I love meatballs because they're so versatile, hence the five different meatball recipes.  You can eat meatballs as an appetizer, as a side, on a sandwich, with a sweet sauce, with a savory sauce, with an Italian twist....the list goes on and on!

This particular meatball recipe is your basic quick and easy recipe.  They don't have a ton of heavy seasoning, so they could easily be used in any recipe that calls for small meatballs.  You could always add a sprinkle of garlic powder and Italian Seasoning to the mix if you're serving them with spaghetti, but they are delicious and complement any sauce or dip as is!

These little meatballs are also great for making a big batch and freezing for use in recipes later.  It's a time saver in the long run and so much better than the packaged frozen kind from the store.

How To Make Easy Oven Baked Meatballs

You will love how easy it is to make homemade meatballs in your oven. First, combine ground beef, onions, breadcrumbs, parmesan cheese, seasonings, milk, and an egg in a large bowl. Shape the meat mixture into meatballs and bake until cooked through. See below for a detailed ingredients list and instructions.

What You'll Need to Make Cocktail Meatballs

Here is a list of ingredients needed to make the best mini meatballs:
  • Olive oil: Extra virgin olive oil is what I use in my kitchen.
  • Ground beef: Use an 80/20 blend for meatballs -- this means the meat will have 20% fat content.
  • Panko breadcrumbs: I use panko breadcrumbs that have a more coarse texture than plain breadcrumbs.
  • Parmesan cheese: I always recommend using fresh grated cheese for the ultimate cheesy flavor.
  • Milk: Controversial ingredient, but the milk helps keep the meatballs nice and moist.
  • Onion: Make sure your onion is finely chopped, no big hunks.
  • Egg: If you want an egg free meatballs recipe, simply omit the egg.

Oven Baked Mini Meatballs ingredients in a white bowl unmixed and shaped meatballs on a baking sheet lined with foil.

How Many Mini Meatballs Per Person is Enough?

Whether you're serving the meatballs as an appetizer or as a side dish, I like to plan for three to four meatballs per person.

Mini Meatball Variations

This mini meatballs recipe as written is a plain, basic small meatball that will be great used in any recipe. Here are a few ways you can change the flavor of your meatballs to mix things up a little:
  • Italian Meatballs: add Italian seasoning
  • Mexican Meatballs: add cumin and chili powder
  • Garlic Herb Meatballs: add minced garlic and fresh minced parsley
  • Greek Meatballs: add crumbled feta and dill

Oven Baked Mini Meatballs in a white bowl with fresh tomatoes in front of the bowl.

Ways to Serve Mini Meatballs

Here are a few great options for ways to serve this mini meatball recipe:
  • as cocktail meatballs with barbecue sauce or other dipping sauce
  • with pasta and marinara sauce
  • on a meatball sandwich
  • baked into a pasta or rice casserole
  • in meatball soup
  • and so much more!

How To Store Leftover Mini Meatballs

Store leftover meatballs in an air tight container in the refrigerator for up to four days and frozen for up to four months.

More Yummy Recipes

Here are a few more meatball recipes from the archives for all of the meatball fans out there:

If you try this homemade mini meatballs recipe, I'd love to know what you think in the comments below. Enjoy!

Oven Baked Mini Meatballs

Yield: 16 meatballs
Prep Time: 15 MINUTES
Cook time: 20 MINUTES
Total time: 35 MINUTES
These Oven Baked Mini Meatballs are easy to make, super versatile, and ready in less than 30 minutes! Try these basic meatballs as an appetizer with a side of bbq sauce for dipping or serve them with your favorite pasta and marinara sauce.


1 tablespoon olive oil
1 lb ground beef
1/4 cup panko breadcrumbs
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
1/4 cup milk
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 cup onion, finely chopped
1 egg


  1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with foil and drizzle with olive oil. Spread oil to cover the baking sheet.
  2. Combine the remaining ingredients in a large bowl. Roll into 20 (1 1/2-inch) meatballs and place on the baking sheet 1-inch apart.
  3. Bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes or until no longer pink in the middle.


These are the sheet pans I use.

Author: Becky Tarala

Nutrition data should not be considered a guarantee. Please see our full Nutrition Data Disclosure.


  1. I made these for my 11 mo old grandson who loves meatballs. I’m sure he’ll gobble them up!

  2. Instead of ground beef I used ground Italian sausage. Used them in 'my' spaghetti sauce.

  3. I like mine mini—like 1/2” for soup! Any ideas how long to bake one that small?

    1. Check the meatballs after 10 minutes. Some people broil them for for 8-10 minutes two rack down from the flames.

  4. I'm planning on using this recipe to stuff mini peppers. This is perfect without necessarily screaming Italian.
    Thank you.

  5. I used these meatballs in stroganoff. Delish!