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These Greek meatballs are an easy and delicious way to change up your meatball routine! All beef meatballs with fresh onion and garlic are stuffed with feta cheese and baked in the oven until tender and served with a homemade tzatziki sauce. Believe you me when I tell you they are sure to become a family favorite. Plus, they’re really easy to make – perfect for a busy weeknight dinner.
When you think of Greek or Mediterranean food, the first thing that comes to mind is usually gyros or lamb. But there are many other delicious dishes to explore, like these amazing GrGreek-styleeatballs! These Mediterranean meatballs make the perfect appetizer or dinner. Just serve with a Greek orzo salad or lemon rice for a complete meal.
why you’ll love these greek meatballs with feta
- Flavor packed. These aren’t your traditional beef meatballs. The addition of fresh garlic, onion, cumin, and oregano gives them a delicious Mediterranean flavor.
- Stuffed with feta. Feta cheese is the perfect addition to these Greek meatballs. Its salty and tangy flavor pairs perfectly with the beef and tzatziki sauce.
- Homemade tzatziki sauce. I don’t know anyone who can resist this cool and creamy sauce made with Greek yogurt, cucumber, garlic, mint, and lemon. It’s the perfect topping for these meatballs.
- Perfect appetizer or main course. These Mediterranean meatballs can be served as an appetizer with toothpicks or as a main course over Greek salad, rice, or pasta.
Ingredients to make greek meatballs
All you need is a few staple ingredients to make these Greek meatballs, and while the Tzatziki sauce is highly recommended, you don’t have to make it as an accompaniment.
For the Meatballs
- Ground beef: I like to use 80/20 ground beef for these meatballs. You could also use ground lamb or a mix of the two. You do want some fat to help keep your meatballs moist.
- Bread crumbs: I just use a slice of white bread and make my own bread crumbs. You’re welcome to use panko or another store-bought version.
- Egg & Milk: Helps bind everything together.
- Onion: Finely diced, so it doesn’t overpower the meatballs. Red onion is milder in flavor than white onion, so that’s what I typically use.
- Garlic: Fresh is best! But, if you’re all out, you can use a teaspoon of powdered dry garlic.
- Cumin, oregano, and salt: Gives the meatballs a delicious Mediterranean flavor.
- Feta cheese: I like to use a block of feta and crumble it myself.
For the Tzatziki Sauce
- Greek yogurt: Full fat is best, but you could use low-fat if that’s what you have.
- Cucumber: You’ll want to grate the cucumber on a box grater or shred it with a food processor. This will help remove some of the water from the cucumber, so your sauce isn’t watery.
- Garlic, mint, salt, and lemon: These are all essential for flavor. If you don’t have mint, you could use dill or basil. While they aren’t the traditional option, they work well in a pinch.
- Olive oil: Just a touch to help thin out the sauce while adding a richness that’s just right.
How to make greek meatballs with tzatziki sauce
Alright, now for the fun part, making meatballs! If you’ve never made them at home, don’t worry; it’s super easy and fun!
Mix Meatballs ingredients
- Combine the bread and milk in a large bowl and let sit until the milk is absorbed.
- Add the beaten egg, red onion, garlic, cumin, oregano, salt, and a quarter of the ground beef.
- Mix together until completely combined.
- Add the rest of the ground beef and mix just until blended.
Stuff, Roll and Bake
- Divide the meatball mixture into 12 equal portions.
- Flatten each portion into a circle and place a chunk of feta in the center.
- Fold the edges of the meat up and around the feta, and roll to form into a round ball.
- Place the meatballs on the prepared wire rack, and bake.
Tips for making baked Mediterranean meatballs
- Finely chop onions and garlic. The meatballs will have a better overall presentation when everything is finely chopped. They will also adhere together more easily this way. I recommend using a grater if possible or a really sharp knife for finely chopping.
- Mix gently. Overmixing the meat mixture will result in tough, dense meatballs. To avoid this, add a quarter of the ground meat to the rest of the ingredients and mix thoroughly before adding the rest of the meat. Once the rest of the meat is added, mix only until just combined (by hand, if possible). This will ensure your meatballs come out tender and juicy!
- Try pan frying them! Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a heavy-bottomed pan over medium high heat. Add the meatballs and cook until browned on the bottom, 4-5 minutes. Flip the meatballs and cook until browned on the second side and cooked through, 4-5 minutes longer.
- Use tongs for flipping. If you’re cooking the meatballs on the stove, the best tool to use to flip them is a pair of tongs! Tongs will allow you to neatly pick up and turn each individual meatball without bumping them against the others in the pan. They also allow you to be far enough away from the pan to avoid the inevitable grease spatters
popular substitutions & additions
- Try another cheese. The crumbled feta cheese is perfect for the Greek-style meatballs, but you can also try small cubes of cheddar cheese or mozzarella cheese for a different flavor.
- Use breadcrumbs instead of sliced bread. If you don’t have sliced bread, you can mix in ¼ cup of regular or panko breadcrumbs to add more texture to the meatballs.
- Switch up the seasoning. If you want to change up the flavor of the meatballs, try using different seasonings such as Italian seasoning, my 7 spice blend, or even a curry spice blend.
- Make these meatballs with a different protein. If you want to use lamb, chicken, or ground turkey in place of beef, it will work just as well!
what to serve with your Greek-style meatballs
how to store & reheat beef meatballs
These meatballs can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge.
To reheat, simply place them on a baking sheet and bake at 350 degrees until heated through. You could also reheat them in a pan on the stove over medium heat, flipping occasionally until heated through. Using the microwave may dry them out, but that is also an option.
how long will cooked meatballs last in the fridge?
Cooked meatballs will last in the fridge for up to five days.
can i freeze these Greek meatballs?
Yes! You can make them ahead and freeze to cook later or cook and freeze to reheat!
To freeze before cooking:
- Prepare the meatballs through step three.
- Place them on a baking sheet lined with wax paper, making sure they are not touching.
- Flash freeze for one hour, then transfer to a freezer bag or container and store in the freezer for up to three months.
Frequently asked questions
There are a few things that could cause this. If you overmix the meat mixture, it can come out dry. Be sure to mix just until combined. Another reason could be that you didn’t use enough moisture in the mixture. If your mixture seems too dry, add a little more milk or water until it’s moist but not wet. Finally, make sure you’re not overcooking the meatballs within the oven. They should be cooked through but still moist and juicy.
When making meatballs, it’s important to use all the binders, bread crumbs, egg, and milk to help hold them together. Also, if you overcooked them or handled them too much while cooking, they can fall apart. Be sure to use a light touch when flipping them and cook until just done.
The best way to tell if your meatballs are cooked through is to use an instant-read thermometer. They should be cooked to an internal temperature of 160 degrees. Another way to tell is to cut one in half. If it’s cooked through, the center will be brown and not pink.
The Greek-style meatballs are a delicious, easy-to-make dish that will be a hit with your family and friends. The recipe is simple enough for even the novice cook, but can also be easily adapted to create your own unique version of the dish. Be sure to try serving them with our delicious homemade tzatziki sauce!
More beef recipes to try:
- Unstuffed Peppers
- Meat Stuffed Pitas
- Okra Stew
- Hashweh Ground Beef
- Lebanese Baked Kibbeh
- Spaghetti and Homemade Meatballs
- Ground Beef Hummus
- Classic Beef Tacos
- Ground Beef with Chickpeas and Rice
- Meat Stuffed Squash
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For the meatballs:
For the meatballs:
- Preheat the oven to 400°F. Spray a wire rack with nonstick cooking spray and set over a rimmed baking sheet.
- Combine the bread and milk in a large bowl and let sit until the milk is absorbed, about 1 minute. Add the beaten egg, red onion, garlic, cumin, oregano, salt, and a quarter of the ground beef, and mix together until completely combined. Add the rest of the ground beef and mix just until blended.
- Divide the meatball mixture into 12 equal portions. Flatten each portion into a circle and place a chunk of feta in the center. Fold the edges of the meat up and around the feta, and roll to form into a round ball.
- Place the meatballs on the prepared wire rack set and bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the meatballs are browned and cooked through.
For the tzatziki sauce:
- Meanwhile, make the tzatziki. Place the grated cucumber in a kitchen towel and wring out as much moisture as possible. Place the cucumber in a medium bowl. Add the yogurt, minced garlic, lemon juice, olive oil, mint, and salt and stir to combine.
- Serve the baked meatballs with the tzatziki sauce, sprinkled with additional finely chopped mint.
Nutrition information provided is an estimate. It will vary based on cooking method and specific ingredients used.