baked broccoli meatballs

Grandma’s baked broccoli meatballs

You know, no one can ever get enough of meatballs: with their traditional flavour and the enveloping aroma that floods the house, they are simply incomparable. That’s why I have included two versions in my cookbook “About San Gimignano, my journey through the secrets of Tuscan cuisine“!

But today we’re not talking about “flab”, today we’re talking about a much lighter variant, decidedly different but beyond fantastic. Grandma’s baked broccoli meatballs are easy and have an intense taste, even better if garnished with a cube of mozzarella inside, which makes them stringy and bewitching.

I don’t know about you, but I was struck, if not transfixed, by their goodness. This is definitely a perfect recipe to use broccoli and make even the most sceptical children love it, after all, everyone loves meatballs! So, discussions aside, let’s try our hand at preparing this delicious recipe!

baked broccoli meatballs

More about broccoli

Broccoli is truly a healthy herbage: it is low in heat, quite rich in fibre, calcium, iron, low in sodium and abundant in vitamin C. They have revitalising, diuretic and anti-uric, refreshing and emollient properties. They are definitely an advisable and tasty side dish!

If it’s broccoli season, you can opt for frozen broccoli, at which point you’ll need to boil it for about 5 minutes in boiling water, or until soft. Once ready, drain and discard the excess liquid. Place them in the bowl and mash them with a fork. If they are still very “watery”, squeeze them again with the help of a sieve with small holes and use them in the recipe.

baked broccoli meatballs

Grandma's baked broccoli meatballs

You know, no one can ever get enough of meatballs: with their traditional flavour and the enveloping aroma that floods the house, they are simply incomparable.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 45 mins
Total Time 55 mins
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Italian
Servings 20 meatballs


  • 1 broccoli
  • 110 g grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 egg
  • 1 mozzarella
  • 1 garlic clove
  • Fresh basil leaves to taste
  • Breadcrumbs to taste
  • Salt, pepper and nutmeg


  • To prepare these tasty meatballs you will first have to cut the tops off your broccoli, rinse them under water and steam them for about 15 minutes, or until tender.
  • Once cooked, place them in a bowl and mash them with a fork, then wait a few minutes for them to cool.
  • Add the egg, the garlic clove and some chopped basil leaves and finally the grated cheese.
  • Season with salt and pepper and finish with a pinch of nutmeg if you like. Finally, add enough breadcrumbs to the mixture to make a meatball mixture, a few tablespoons will be enough.
  • Heat the oven to 180°C (356°F). Form into balls and, if you want to make your vegetarian meatballs extra cheesy, place 1 mozzarella cube inside.
  • Place them about 2 cm apart on a baking tray covered with baking paper and bake at 180°C (356°F) for 30 minutes.
  • Enjoy while still warm and taste this delicious vegetarian version of grandma's meatballs!






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