A homemade air fryer meatballs recipe that is so quick and easy, it’s silly not to make them. Perfect for a meatball sub, or with pasta. Ready in less than 10 minutes in my air fryer, they are great for any weeknight. A blend of ground chuck and ground pork keeps the flavor high and the cost low.

air fryer meatballs with pasta, sauce, on in a white bowl

Shopping List

  • Ground Beef
  • Ground Pork
  • Eggs
  • Parmesan Cheese
  • Breadcrumbs
  • Fresh Parsley and Basil
  • Dry Oregano
  • Fresh Garlic

ingredients for air fryer meatballs, including meat, seasonings and more all on a wooden cutting board

Keep it Loose

A perfect meatball is a light and pillowy one. DO NOT over work the grind! Keep it loose, don’t work it so much with your hands that you can no longer see the texture of the original grind.

a metal bowl that has raw meat in it

Over working makes a dense and rubbery meatball that is just unpleasant. I use a fork to mix my ingredients together. This keeps the mix cold, so the fats stay firm, and my stubby fingers aren’t compressing things too much.

a hand holding a mold creating multiple balls of meat

Then I use an ice cream scoop to portion. I don’t worry about making perfect spheres because you will end up with a flat spot anyway, so let’s just get them cooked.

meat and other ingredients shaped into balls on a white plate

Air Fryer Versatility

In this recipe I start the air fryer meatballs at 350Β°F to get them cooking and firm them up. Once I can’t see any pink at all from the outside, I crank the heat to 390Β°F to finish the meatballs and create lots of tasty browning.

air fryer meatballs being cooked


I give a flat 3 minutes to start, then 5 more to finish in the recipe. This worked great with my unit, but every unit varies, even within the same model line. Once you turn the heat up you need to keep an eye on things. When used right an air fryer is a marvelous thing but they can dry out a piece of protein very fast.

If you take a peek and think they are done, break one open. If there is zero pink, it’s time to eat! Getting them brown will taste great, but not at the cost of drying them out, just keep that in mind.

air fryer meatballs with pasta, sauce, on in a white bowl

Italian Style Meatballs in the Air Fryer

Chef Eric
A homemade air fryer meatballs recipe so quick and easy, it's silly not to make them. Perfect for a meatball sub, or with pasta. Ready in less than 10 minutes in my air fryer, they are great for any weeknight. A blend of ground chuck, and ground pork keeps the flavor high and the cost low.
Prep Time 7 mins
Cook Time 8 mins
Total Time 15 mins
Course Appetizer, Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine American, Italian
Servings 4 people

Equipment

  • Air Fryer
  • Large Mixing Bowl
  • Ice Cream Scoop- optional
  • Fork

Ingredients
  

  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1/2 lb. ground pork
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh basil
  • 1/2 tsp dry oregano
  • 1 large clove fresh garlic – chopped fine
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper

Instructions
 

  • In a large mixing bowl combine all the ingredients excluding the ground meats. Mix well with a fork.
  • Add ground beef and pork to bowl breaking it up into small bits as you do. Take care not to compress the meat any more than necessary.
  • Using a small ice cream scoop portion the meatball mix into roughly golf ball sized portions. Compress the meat only as much as it needs to hold together.
  • Preheat air fryer to 350 F or 176. Place meatballs into air fryer carefully. Try to keep a little space between each for air flow.
  • Cook meatballs for 3 minutes. Then raise the temperature to 390 F or 198C and cook for 5 more minutes. (You can transfer meatballs to a simmering sauce and cook for 10 minutes at this stage if you prefer.)
  • Enjoy with pasta, or a Meatball sandwich.

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