There are three reasons you might want to make :
- You want .
- You need to make
- You simply ran out of breadcrumbs and don’t feel like running to the store.
Either way, I’ve got you covered with this !
These meatballs use lean and don’t require any breadcrumbs OR eggs, making them incredibly easy to throw together.
Even if you’re not low-carb or , these healthy will hit the spot.
We’ll be making 12 meatballs, each with only 75 calories, 4g fat, virtually no carbs, and 8.5g of protein!
Why do most recipes use breadcrumbs?
If you look up a standard , it’s going to call for breadcrumbs and egg.
But when you eat meatballs, you don’t really taste any bread, so what’s the point?
Breadcrumbs are used in meatballs to prevent them from drying out. The breadcrumbs soak up moisture inside of the and hold onto it, leading to light and tender meatballs.
However, you can easily leave the breadcrumbs out and still achieve a perfectly tender meatball. Overall, the final consistency is a bit drier without breadcrumbs, but it still works great!
For someone looking to make a , you might find that or works in replacement of , but I do not find it necessary to find a substitution.
You can very easily omit breadcrumbs altogether, which I’m about to show you here.
How to make or eggs
Since we’re not using any breadcrumbs, we can also omit the egg in this .
Eggs act as a binder in meatballs to hold the , breadcrumbs, and spices together, but since we’re not using any breadcrumbs, we can leave the egg out!
Eggs help achieve a light & fluffy , so you can certainly add it into this if that’s your preference. When you follow this as-is, the meatballs will be on the dense side, but still plenty juicy and flavorful.
I chose to use learn, 90/10 Sweet Chili Chicken Meatballs). to make these meatballs. You can follow the same but swap out to make , or to make chicken meatballs (like my
All you have to do is take all of the ingredients and add them to a .
Then, use your hands to mix everything up well until it all comes together into a .
Break off small pieces of the , about the size of a golf ball, and roll them in your palms to form the meatballs.
To keep these meatballs nice and juicy, I chose to them in the air fryer. By using the air fryer, it helps the lean to stay nice and juicy without drying out.
If you don’t have an air fryer, you can very easily make as well. Simply line a with foil or parchment paper, then add your meatballs. These can be baked at 400 degrees F for about 15 minutes.
To air fry, simply add the meatballs to the air fryer basket, leaving enough space in between them to fully . Let them air fry at 400 degrees F for 12 minutes, flipping them halfway through.
If you prefer your meatballs without any , you can top them with some parsley and and enjoy them as-is.
The healthy meatballs are packed with flavor thanks to the seasoning and cheese we added, so you may very well enjoy them plain.
In fact, you can serve these meatballs up as an appetizer along with dipping sauces to allow your friends & family to coat them however they’d like.
But if you really want to elevate these as a and serve over your favorite pasta., toss them in your favorite or
I almost always eat Banza chickpea pasta (it’s what I make my go-to mac & cheese with) and it was the perfect pairing for these healthy meatballs.
If you want to make the ultimate low-carb meal, you can serve these over as well.
Need some more dinner inspiration?
These healthy meatballs make a great main dish, but if you’re looking for some other ideas, here are a few other recipes on my blog that you’re going to love:
- Chicken Parm Stuffed Peppers
- Sweet Chili Chicken Meatballs
- Spinach & Feta Air Fryer Turkey Burgers
- Hot Honey Ground Beef & Broccoli
- 1 Pound 90/10 Ground Beef (can use any ground meat)
- 2 Tbsp Grated Parmesan Cheese
- 1/4 Cup (28g) Lite Shredded Mozzarella Cheese (I use Trader Joe's brand)
- 2 Tbsp Tomato Sauce of Choice
- 1/2 tsp Black Pepper
- 1 tsp Salt
- 1 tsp Garlic Powder
- 1 tsp Onion Powder
- 1/4 tsp Parsley
- In a large bowl, combine all of the ingredients.
- Use your hands to mix everything up really well until it all comes together. You can play with the ratios if preferred (for example, if you love garlic, you can add more into the meatball mixture) but I wouldn't add any additional tomato sauce and it might make your mixture too loose.
- Preheat your air fryer for a few minutes at 400 degrees F. If you would rather bake these meatballs in the oven, preheat your oven to 400 degrees F.
- Break off golf ball-sized pieces of your mixture, roll them into a ball, then add to your air fryer basket (or onto a baking sheet if baking in the oven). Continue until the entire mixture has been used, which was exactly 12 meatballs for me.
- Air fry at 400 degrees F for 10 minutes, carefully flipping the meatballs halfway through. If baking, bake these meatballs at 400 degrees F for 15 minutes, flipping them halfway through.
- Remove and let cool for a couple of minutes, then serve with your favorite sauce or pasta!
- Since these healthy meatballs do not contain any egg and are made from lean meat, they're going to feel a bit dense compared to regular meatballs. They're still plenty juicy, but don't expect them to just fall apart like full-fat meatballs tend to.
- I was worried that 90/10 ground sirloin would be too dry, but it worked great. That being said, 85/15 beef would work amazingly well.
- These can be made with any ground meat by following the same instructions. However, it's worth noting that other meat may be very loose without a binder, noteably ground chicken or ground turkey. I left the egg out for my Sweet Chili Chicken Meatballs, but they definitely needed breadcrumbs to help keep them together.
- The photo you see here is 3 of these meatballs mixed up with Trader Joe's Bolognese sauce (highly recommended) and served over some Banza chickpea pasta!
- If you want to meal prep these meatballs, they can be saved as frozen meatballs. I recommend stopping them in the air fryer around 8 minutes instead of 10, that way they won't dry out when reheated.
Nutrition InformationYield 12 Serving Size 1 Meatball
Amount Per Serving Calories 75Total Fat 4gCarbohydrates 0.5gProtein 8.5g