Big-Batch Meatballs

Here’s a handy recipe to have in your repertoire.  It is so nice to have meatballs in the freezer, ready to go at any time.  This recipe is by Janet Chadwick.  She is an author of several books on gardening, homesteading and food preservation.  I have enjoyed everything she has written.

Big-Batch Meatballs

Makes 100 Meatballs

  • 5 pounds lean ground beef
  • 3 eggs
  • 1-1/2 Cups quick-cooking oatmeal
  • 2 Large onions
  • 1 Tablespoon of salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon of pepper

You may use these meatballs with spaghetti sauce, a gravy like in Swedish Meatballs, or with a sweet and sour type sauce.

  1. Pre-heat to 400 degrees F.
  2. Place beef in a large bowl.
  3. Measure eggs, oatmeal, onions, salt and pepper into a blender container and blend until smooth.
  4. Pour blender contents over beef and mix well with your hands (It’s the only way to go.  It’s okay, you’re washable.)
  5. Shape the meat mixture into 1-inch balls.
  6. Bake on baking sheets in preheated oven for 20 minutes.  It makes things less messy to line your baking sheets with parchment paper or aluminum foil.
  7. Pour off any fat from sheets before using meatballs or freezing.

To freeze: Cool at room temperature for 30 minutes before tray freezing.  When they are frozen, pack into food-safe freezer bags.  Label and use as needed.  (You may pack them into glass jars if you prefer to use glass.  Measure out how many your family will need for one meal and figure out which size jar best suits that amount.)

Variation: You can season half of the meatballs with Italian seasoning, grated parmesan, etc., if desired.

So, these are pretty good and everyone here likes them.  But I have found them to be a bit onion-y (is that even a word?), as in I am burping them up later.  I think the reason is that the onions are not “de-flamed” before use in the blender.  So I suggest, after dicing your onions, to put them in a bowl of water to “de-flame” them.  Then put them in the blender.  I think that will help.

De-flaming onions is something I learned from Rick Bayless, Chicago Chef & Restaurateur, Top Chef Master and famous for his Mexican cuisine.  I have one of his books on Mexican cooking and highly recommend it.  I did find more of his books at my local library, so if you are a Mexican food fan like me, check your library out and see if they have any of his cookbooks.  This method of his is used with raw onions to take the “flame” out of them so they may be used in raw preparations like salsa, etc.  But I think it may have merit in this recipe, too.

To use these frozen meatballs, I just take out what I need and heat them (frozen) up in the sauce I am using with them.  There is nothing more convenient!

Enjoy!

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4 thoughts on “Big-Batch Meatballs

  1. Just found your blog and saw this recipe.

    **To use these frozen meatballs, I just take out what I need and heat them (frozen) up in the sauce I am using with them. **

    How ;long does it usually take to heat up the meatballs on the stove top in sauce? Although I am likely to put them in the crock pot on low all day.

    …Lisa

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