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Air Fryer Meatballs

These Air Fryer Meatballs might just become your new favorite way to cook meatballs. They are juicy, packed with flavor, and the perfect amount of crispy. Plus, they come together in less than 30 minutes. Time to hop in the kitchen!

Overhead shot of a pile of air fryer meatballs.

Why You Should Make These Air Fryer Meatballs

  • Quick and easy. All it takes is a little mixing, forming meatballs, and popping them in the air fryer. You will have a delicious, restaurant-quality meatball in under 30 minutes.
  • Flavorful. Our meatballs are loaded with fresh herbs, onion, and the perfect amount of seasoning.
  • Juicy. The air fryer does a great job at making these meatballs crispy on the outside and tender and juicy on the inside.
Ingredients for air fryer meatballs labeled and separated into bowls.

Ingredients

  • Ground beef & Ground Italian Sausage: I like using 80/20 beef, but feel free to use a leaner product instead. I also add sweet Italian pork sausage for more flavorful meatballs.
  • Breadcrumbs & Egg: These two ingredients hold the meatballs together. I used plain breadcrumbs here, but you could also use seasoned breadcrumbs.
  • Seasonings: I use sea salt, ground black pepper, and garlic powder.
  • Veggies & Herbs: I like to include fresh onion in meatballs as well as fresh parsley and cilantro.

How to Make Air Fryer Meatballs

Here’s a quick overview of how to cook meatballs in the air fryer, but scroll to the recipe card below for more detailed instructions.

  • Prep. Preheat the air fryer to 400˚F.
  • Use your hands to mix together the ground beef, ground Italian sausage, seasoned breadcrumbs, egg, olive oil, sea salt, ground black pepper, garlic powder, onion, parsley, and cilantro.
  • Shape the meatballs. Form the mixture into 1.5-inch balls.
  • Fry. Arrange the meatballs in a single layer in the basket of the air fryer. Fry for 10-12 minutes.
Overhead shot of meatballs cooking in an air fryer basket.

Recipe Tips

  • Don’t over-mix. Over-mixing the meatball mixture will end you with dense, tough meatballs. Mix everything together just until incorporated. No more.
  • Try to make the meatballs equal in size. This will help ensure even cook time.
  • Don’t crowd the air fryer. Stacking meatballs in the air fryer will ensure that they do not brown properly. Make sure to arrange the meatballs in a single layer in the basket of the air fryer. If you run out of room, not to worry. Just cook the meatballs in batches.

What to Serve with Meatballs

These simple meatballs are delicious on their own as finger food or as part of a larger meal. Lighten things up by serving them my Tomato Burrata Salad or this Crunchy Kale Quinoa Salad. I love serving these delicious bites over Garlic Rosemary Mashed Potatoes or with my Crispy Smashed Potatoes. Add a few meatballs to my Creamy Garlic Butter Pasta with Spinach, this Creamy Tomato One Pot Pasta, or my Red Pepper Sauce Pasta with Spinach and Feta.

A fork piercing through an air fryer meatball served on a plate with other meatballs.

Storing Leftovers

  • Allow the meatballs to cool completely before sealing them in an airtight container and storing them in the refrigerator for up to 4 days or freeze them for up to 2 months.
  • To reheat, preheat the air fryer to 250˚F, arrange the meatballs in a single layer in the basket of the air fryer, and fry for 5 minutes or until heated through. Or, reheat in the oven at 300˚F for 10 minutes or until heated through.

More Easy Air Fryer Recipes To Try

A fork piercing through an air fryer meatball served on a plate with other meatballs.

Air Fryer Meatballs

Katerina | Diethood
These air fryer meatballs are prepared with ground beef and Italian pork sausage! They are juicy, packed with flavor, and always a crowd pleaser.
5 from 4 votes
Servings : 8
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Resting Time 5 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes

Ingredients
  

  • 1 pound ground beef, I prefer 80/20
  • 1 pound ground Italian pork sausage, I like sweet Italian sausage, but spicy will work as well
  • ½ cup seasoned breadcrumbs
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • teaspoons sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder, or 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 small yellow onion, finely diced
  • cup chopped fresh parsley
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro, optional

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the air fryer to 400˚F.
  • In a large bowl, combine the ground beef, ground Italian sausage, seasoned breadcrumbs, egg, olive oil, sea salt, ground black pepper, garlic powder, onion, parsley, and cilantro.
  • Use your hands to mix all of the ingredients together until a homogenous mixture is achieved. Be careful not to over-mix.
  • Form the mixture into 1.5-inch balls. You can use a cookie scoop if you’d like to keep the meatballs as close to equal in size as possible.
  • Arrange the meatballs in a single layer in the air fryer's basket. Depending on the size of the air fryer, you might have to cook them in batches.
  • Air fry for 10 to 12 minutes or until a test meatball is no longer pink on the inside or until the internal temperature registers at 165˚F on a meat thermometer.
  • Remove the meatballs from the air fryer and let them rest for a few minutes before serving.

Notes

  • Ground Meat: I love using a mixture of beef and Italian pork sausage for my meatballs. You can, of course, use all ground beef or all Italian sausage if you choose.
  • Breadcrumbs: I use plain breadcrumbs or pork rind crumbs for my meatballs, but you can also use seasoned breadcrumbs, panko crumbs, or gluten-free crumbs.
  • Skip the cilantro if you do not like the taste of it; add more parsley if you want, or any other freshly chopped herbs.
  • Don’t overmix because the meatball mixture will be dense, creating tough meatballs. Mix everything just until incorporated.
  • Make the meatballs equal in size so they will cook evenly and at the same time.
  • Don’t crowd the air fryer. Arrange the meatballs in a single layer in the air fryer basket, and if you run out of room, cook the meatballs in batches.
  • Oven Method: You can bake the meatballs at 375˚F for 18 to 20 minutes or until the internal temperature of the meatballs registers at 165˚F.

Nutrition

Serving: 4 ounces | Calories: 349 kcal | Carbohydrates: 7 g | Protein: 22 g | Fat: 25 g | Saturated Fat: 8 g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3 g | Monounsaturated Fat: 12 g | Trans Fat: 0.2 g | Cholesterol: 102 mg | Sodium: 999 mg | Potassium: 403 mg | Fiber: 1 g | Sugar: 1 g | Vitamin A: 294 IU | Vitamin C: 5 mg | Calcium: 40 mg | Iron: 3 mg

Nutritional info is an estimate and provided as courtesy. Values may vary according to the ingredients and tools used. Please use your preferred nutritional calculator for more detailed info.

Course: Appetizer, Dinner
Cuisine: American, Italian
Keyword: air fryer meatballs, homemade meatballs, meatballs in the air fryer
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