Who doesn’t love meatballs? They are easy to prepare from any type of ground meat and you can flavor them with anything you like. You can even make vegan and vegetarian meatballs.
There are many dishes with meatballs including casseroles, pasta, sandwiches, soups, and salads. They pair well with mashed potatoes, egg noodles and fried cabbage, baked beans, rice, and many other dishes.
The ingredients of meatballs are ground meat which can be beef, pork, lamb, turkey or chicken, onion, eggs, garlic, bread crumbs, and seasonings.
For better flavor, you can even mix different types of meat like pork and lamb, or pork and beef. There are also variations with many ingredients or seasonings. Meatballs can be fried, steamed, baked, and braised in a sauce. You can either purchase frozen meatballs from the store or make them at home.
You will need only a few ingredients and you will make meatballs with a great flavor and texture. However, how to keep meatballs from falling apart? What is the main reason why they can’t retain their shape?
Well, there are few ingredients you should use to make the best meatballs that will not fall apart. Keep reading to find out more!
How Do I Get My Meatballs to Stick Together?
You can get meatballs to stick together with ingredients like fetta cheese, yogurt, eggs, or buttermilk. These ingredients are used as a binder in the meatballs mixture and are holding all the ingredients together.
However, if you used some of these binders and the meatballs are still falling apart you can dust them with flour just before frying.
Will Meatballs Fall Apart Without Breadcrumbs?
Meatballs will not fall apart without breadcrumbs because breadcrumbs are not used as a binder in the meatballs mixture. They are used to absorb the natural juices from the meatballs mixture and then release them so you can have juicier meatballs.
However, if you believe that breadcrumbs will help the meatballs not to fall apart you can apply them to the minced meat.
There are also other ingredients you can use as a substitute for breadcrumbs like bread without crust soaked in milk, panko, pretzel or cracker crumbs, and crushed cornflakes.
How to Hold Meatballs Together Without Breadcrumbs?
You can hold meatballs together without breadcrumbs if you use other ingredients instead. The minced meat mixture for meatballs will hold together even without breadcrumbs.
The only binder you will need is eggs. However, for juicy and light meatballs, you can use panko, crushed cornflakes, cracker crumbs, ground flax seeds, rolled oats, ground nuts, or pretzel crumbs.
What Can I Use As a Binder for Meatballs?
As a binder for meatballs, you can use eggs, ricotta cheese, feta cheese, and buttermilk, or plain yogurt.
Eggs are a common ingredient used as a binder in dishes prepared with minced meat. For one pound of minced meat, you can use one large slightly beaten egg.
However, if you are allergic to eggs you can use ricotta or feta cheese in the meatballs mixture. As a substitute for one egg, you can use ¼ cup ricotta or feta cheese.
Your meatballs will be tender, tastier, and juicier. You can also use buttermilk. Or plain yogurt as a binder for meatballs. Instead of one egg add 3 tablespoons plain yogurt or buttermilk and your meatballs will not fall apart.
How to Keep Meatballs From Falling Apart in Soup?
You can keep meatballs from falling apart in the soup if you use the right amount of eggs and bread crumbs. If you add too many eggs and bread crumbs the meatballs will fall apart in the soup because they will be too soggy and soft.
While if you add fewer eggs and bread crumbs they will be dry and fall apart either way. Therefore, add the right amount of eggs and bread crumbs so you can have a soup with whole meatballs. You can also fry the meatballs before you add them to the soup. That way, they will be firmer and not fall apart so easily.
How to Get Meatballs to Stick Together Without Eggs?
Meatballs can stick together without eggs. You will have to add other ingredients such as mashed potatoes, unsweetened applesauce, tomato paste, ricotta cheese, buttermilk, and breadcrumbs.
Mashed potatoes will provide a thick and super soft texture to the meatballs. You can also add sour cream, butter, or milk for a richer flavor. Use ¼ cup of mashed potatoes instead of one egg to prepare your meatballs.
Unsweetened applesauce will add moisture and flavor to the meatballs. To substitute 1 egg in the meatballs mixture use 3 tablespoons unsweetened applesauce.
Tomato paste has high water content and will deliver moisture and soft texture to the meatballs. Add 2 tablespoons of tomato paste instead of one egg in the meatballs mixture.
Ricotta cheese will add a good flavor to the meatballs and make them soft and tender. You can also mix bread crumbs or cracker crumbs with the cheese so the meatballs can have a better texture.
You can use buttermilk and breadcrumb in your meatballs for a firm texture and beautiful flavor. Just mix the breadcrumbs with the buttermilk and use water to improve their texture. For one egg use 2 tablespoons of the buttermilk and breadcrumbs mixture.
If you want to make perfect meatballs you have to know few simple tips.
Use 80% clean ground beef so you can have good meat and fat balance. Also, season the beef with salt, pepper, minced onion and garlic, and herbs like oregano, parsley, or rosemary.
Use the right amount of breadcrumbs and eggs. One large egg per 1 pound of meat and 1/2 cup of breadcrumbs will be good enough.
When you are baking the meatballs make sure that there is a space between them, because they can stick together. If you are frying the meatballs in a pan add them to the hot oil and don’t turn them around until they are fully cooked on that side.
Share your own cooking tips in the comments below!