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When you think meatballs, you think of long strings of spaghetti, drenched in red sauce, followed by little balls of meat that just complete the meal perfectly. That being said meatballs can quite capably be paired with anything other than traditional spaghetti or pasta. Meatballs go well with many different sauces like tomato, cream-based, barbeque, and sweet and sour. Bet you’re wondering what to serve with meatballs?
Table of Contents
What Are Meatballs?
Meatballs are minced meat rolled into a small ball, sometimes they contain other ingredients like bread crumbs, minced onion, eggs, butter, and seasoning. Meatballs are cooked by frying, baking, steaming, or placing in a curry sauce to cook on low heat. Many cultures have their own version of this dish, meatballs can be served as a standalone meal, paired with some sauce or they could be included in part of a larger dish, such as the classic dish of spaghetti and meatballs.
Spices Used In Meatballs
A common choice of meat for meatballs are beef, lamb, turkey, chicken and pork. The meat is ground with a fine grinder and mixed with a variety of herbs and spices. These spices vary depending on the region, and it is possible to find thyme, turmeric, cinnamon, nutmeg, oregano, basil, rosemary, parsley, sage, red chilli powder, and ginger. Some people even choose to mix in some liquids like Worcestershire, chilli, and soy sauce.
How To Cook Meatballs?
There is never one isolated version when cooking meatballs, you can choose to fry them in a little bit of oil, to bring out a smoky crispy exterior, or you could bake them in the oven. When the meatballs are cooked like this they can be eaten immediately, or transferred to another pan, where you are preparing the sauce for the meatballs to sit in. This is a terrific way to make meatballs so that they can be eaten with rice, naan, or udon.
What To Have With Meatballs?
If you are unsure of what meatballs taste like, or just plain fed up with the usual spaghetti and meatballs, then you may want to know what to eat with meatballs for dinner. The sides you choose to go with your meatballs will majorly depend on the type of mood you’re in. Savoury, sweet, or spicy we’ve got what you’re looking for, just choose from the list below:
- Bell Peppers and Rice
- Cauliflower Rice
- Vegetable Rice
- Roasted Potatoes
- Mashed Potatoes
- Potato Wedges
- Corn On The Cob
- Indian Kofta Curry
- Vegetable Kabobs
- Meatball Sub
Bell Peppers and Rice
On the subject of what goes well with meatballs, we have comforting and scrumptious sautéed bell peppers stuffed with rice. A colourful addition to any meal, these bell peppers make the perfect bowl for any type of filling you desire. Usually one of the main ingredients used in this type of dish would be minced meat, but in this instance, we have meatballs to serve with bell peppers and rice, which is why we are going to stick to filling the peppers with cooked rice.
Take some perfectly shaped bell peppers, of any colour you desire, and place them on a baking tray ready for the oven, this is how you’ll get a nice singed bell pepper. Next, we need the stuffing, so grab a large bowl and start adding your cooked rice, onion, garlic powder, salt, black pepper and Worcestershire sauce. Mix all of this together and start filling your bell pepper bowls, pop them in the oven and once they’re ready bon appetit!
Rice cauliflower is a great healthy substitute for grain rice, it can be bought from the store, but it can be made at home. Start by removing the green leaves from the cauliflower, making sure its clean start to rice the cauliflower using a cheese grater.
You can steam or sauté the rice with oil or butter, it cooks very quickly and will taste wonderful when served with meatballs. For this side, you could serve your meatballs dry, or have them sat in a curry sauce that can be drizzled over the top of the cauliflower rice, which would delightfully soak up all the flavours, that will make you appreciate each bite.
A delicious side dish like this will pair wonderfully with roasted, fried or curry meatballs. vegetable rice already packs so many flavours that it is just so hard to miss this out of our menu. Simply fry half a sliced onion in a pot, add half a teaspoon of minced garlic, and let it simmer with the lid on or off, then add some salt, and frozen vegetables of your choice.
Let it cook for about 5 minutes, then add your washed rice, and some water, pop on the lid and let the water dry around the grains of rice. Once the water has almost dried, turn the heat down low and let it sit for 10 minutes. This will let the rice slowly cook till tender.
Serve with meatballs, and thin slices of salted onions for a fantabulous dinner.
You can never go wrong with crispy roasted potatoes, fresh from the oven piping hot ready to be eaten. You could either purchase some frozen roasted potatoes, and pop them in the oven easily, or you can make them at home, with a delicious coating that will surely bring great pleasure to your meal.
First place a large roasting tin with some oil into the oven, and let it sit for 10 minutes, boil your potatoes in salted water, and cook for 5 minutes until they begin to soften, drain them in a colander.
To make the coating combine parmesan, garlic granules, smoked paprika, flour, herbs, and some freshly ground black pepper to a bowl. Tip the potatoes into a pan and start to pour the coating over them. Get the tin out of the oven and carefully place the potatoes into the oil then return to the oven for 15 minutes, then a further 10 minutes for that perfect crispiness, we all know and love.
You could serve these with baked meatballs, drizzle both the potatoes and meatballs in thick gravy, and let the fireworks explode in your mouth.
These are my favourite version of cooked potatoes, the creamy mush that tastes oh so wonderful, would really work a treat when served with meatballs. Mash your boiled to perfection potatoes with a potato masher, add some milk, cheese, salt and pepper and mix them together to create your wonderful side to go with your meatballs.
You could get these frozen from the supermarket, and simply pop them in the oven, or fry them in a pan. But if you’re feeling particularly adventurous, you can make them from scratch. Start by cutting your raw potatoes into wedges, transfer them to a bowl, and add paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper. Drizzle with some olive oil and place them on a baking tray, and bake for 35 minutes for appreciated crispiness.
Corn on The Cob
What vegetables can be served with meatballs? Well, corn on the cob works nicely. It’s sweet, buttery and deliciously worth the love it gets. Boil the corn on the cob in some water for about 15 minutes, and once the corn is nice and tender, place it on a plate and spread some butter all around it, till its all juicy, glistening in the kitchen light. Add some salt and pepper for added flavours, and don’t forget your meatballs!
This type of flatbread is commonly found amongst Indian cuisine, its always a good idea to serve a type of bread with your main meal. And for meatballs naan is the perfect choice. The softness of the bread when broken, is so wonderful that many give into the tempation of eating a couple of bites of the naan on its own. But I promise it tastes even better when eaten with meatballs.
For this particular side, you could opt for Italian meatballs which are made from mixing ground beef and pork, loaded with herbs and cheese and dunked in tomato sauce. Tear off a piece of the naan bread, and with it break off a piece of a meatball, dip it into the sauce surrounding the meatballs, then pop it in your mouth, for some finger-licking goodness.
Indian Kofta Curry
To make the meatballs (kofta) you can use any type of meat you wish, start by frying the meatballs in a little oil, till crispy and brown on the outside, then set aside for later.
In a pan fry chopped onions, chopped green chillies, and add some minced garlic followed by a little salt, let that simmer then add some chopped tin tomatoes, followed by chilli flakes, turmeric, garam masala and a little water, and let it cook for 10 minutes. Place your meatballs into the pan and let it simmer for 15 minutes.
You can serve this with bread, rice or simply eat it alone because why not. If you are wondering if rice will match well here and if rice is a vegetable you can learn it all in our suggested article.
A perfect way to appreciate both meatballs and summer is to serve them on a kabob. Potatoes, butternut squash, peppers onions and courgettes can also be added to the kabob if you wish. It’s best to toss the vegetables with seasonings before putting them on the skewer, you can also brush the meatballs and vegetables with a sauce like a barbecue or sweet and sour.
For a side dish that fits like a glove, chewy French bread is definitely top of the list. For extra deliciousness try warming the bread on a pan for about 50 seconds before placing it on a plate for the main event.
Using Italian meatballs as the key ingredient, and place your juicy meatballs onto one of the slices, sprinkle some mozzarella and grated Parmesan cheese atop the meatballs and place the second piece of bread over it, locking the juiciness in. Take a massive bite and enjoy.
A great noodle that works with Italian meatballs are udon noodles. These long thick noodles are perfect for soaking up the tomato sauce surrounding the thick chunky balls of meat, which makes them a perfect side to eat with meatballs.
The freshly boiled noodles are placed in a pan, and the Italian meatballs are thrown on top, then mixed together to combine the flavours perfectly. It’s important to use boiling water as and when needed when cooking so that the noodles don’t get stuck together.
They’re a treat, put them in a sub, you have a sandwich, put them in some tomato sauce you have Italian. Meatballs go well with just about anything, from plain side dishes, to flavour-bomb dishes they all taste wonderful with these little balls of meat. It doesn’t matter what type of meat you use the outcome of deliciousness will always remain exceptionally satisfying.
What’s Good To Have With Meatballs?
There are a variety of side dishes to choose from, depending on your particular mood, you could opt for bread to make a sandwich out of the juicy meatballs, or a side of corn on the cob, some cauliflower rice or anything else you fancy.
What’s A Good Side For BBQ Meatballs?
Mashed potatoes, rice, crusty bread, potato salad, mac and cheese, baked potatoes, baked beans. sweet potato fries, and noodles.
What Is The Best Pasta To Serve With Meatballs?
Whether your meatballs are large or tiny, the best pasta to serve with meatballs is spaghetti, or any long ribbon pasta.
What Sides Go With Swedish Meatballs?
Rice pilaf, sautéed broccoli, potato salad, corn on the cob, baked beans, mashed potatoes, grilled shrimp skewers, roasted vegetables and steamed asparagus with lemon butter sauce.