Best Traditional Greek Meatball (Keftedes) Recipes

Jul 17, 2019

There’s nothing quite like a traditional Greek Keftede. More than just meatballs, they are Greek comfort food at its finest. Packed with flavor, and served in a multitude of ways: from appetizers to a simple breakfast dish presented with a side of eggs, eaten with pita bread, or simmered in tomato sauce and served over pasta. It’s just impossible to go wrong with Keftedes. 

If you want to try these at home, but feel a bit intimidated in the kitchen, don’t worry, We’ve gathered a few easy to make, but amazingly delicious, Keftedes recipes that your family will surely love. 

Easy Greek Keftedes 

Ingredients:

  • Salt (to taste)
  • Pepper (to taste)
  • 1/2 pound lean ground beef
  • 1/2 pound ground lamb
  • 4 medium eggs
  • 5 slices of torn white bread 
  • 5 tablespoons whole milk
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 onion finely chopped 
  • 5 teaspoons chopped fresh mint 
  • 1//2 cup flour (Set aside for coating meatballs) 
  • Olive oil for frying 

Directions:

  • Place the torn pieces of bread in a bowl and soak them thoroughly in the milk.
  • Add the chopped garlic, onion, mint, lamb, beef, eggs, and salt and pepper. Mix by hand until all ingredients are well incorporated. 
  • Take small amounts of the mixture and roll them into individually sized meatballs. Place the flour in a dish and dredge the keftedes in flour until coated. Then set the meatballs on a baking dish or plate. 
  • Heat the oil in a skillet and place keftedes, just a few at a time, in the hot oil. Cook until golden brown on the outside and done in the center. This is generally about 9 minutes
  • Place the hot keftedes in a dish, covered with a paper towel to drain the excess oil. 

Now, just pour your favorite glass of wine and serve these delicious keftedes hot, warm, or even cold. Delicious! 

Lamb and Pork Keftedes 

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium finely chopped red onion
  • 1 lb ground lamb 
  • ½ pound ground pork 
  • 3 finely chopped garlic cloves
  • 1 cup breadcrumbs 
  • 2 medium eggs 
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 7 finely chopped fresh mint leaves 
  • 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • salt (to taste)
  • Red pepper flakes ( to taste)
  • 1/2 cup flour for dredging olive oil. (for frying) 

Directions:

  • Mix all ingredients by hand, until everything is well incorporated. You may refrigerate the mixture for 45 minutes to make the meatballs easier to handle. 
  • Then, roll the mixture into balls. This recipe should make about 30 standard size keftedes.
  • Heat the oil in a large skillet on medium high. After dredging the meatballs in the flour, and dusting off the excess, try cooking just one keftede first. After it’s done, taste for flavor—so you can adjust the seasoning in the remaining mixture. Once you’ve got them exactly as you like, cook the rest of the keftedes in small batches, until golden brown and they are no longer pink in the center. 
  • Drain the excess oil, by placing the keftedes on paper towels. Then serve these juicy Greek treats to your awaiting guests! 

Note: Keftedes also freeze perfectly, if you want to make extra and serve them later. 

Lamb and Beef Keftedes with Tzatziki 

Ingredients:

  • ¾ pound ground beef
  • ¾ pound ground lamb
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
  • 2 medium eggs
  • 1 medium red onion, finely chopped
  • 4 cloves finely chopped garlic
  • ⅓ cup fresh, chopped, parsley
  • 10 medium mint leaves, chopped
  • 1Tbsp Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 ½ tsp dried oregano
  • salt (to taste) 
  • ⅓ cup flour ( for dredging)
  • Olive oil (for frying)
  • Tzatziki (for dipping) 

Directions: 

  • Place all the Keftedes ingredients in a large bowl and mix with your hands—until they are completely combined. However, be careful not to mix too long or the meatballs may become slightly tough. 
  • Cover the mixture with plastic wrap and place in the fridge for about an hour. This will make the meatballs easier to handle, as well as allow the flavors to fully develop. 
  • Place the flour in a flat dish. Remove the mixture from the fridge and roll small, individual size, meatballs with your hands. Dredge each one in flour, then shake off any excess. 
  • Heat oil in a large skillet and place the meatballs—in a single layer—into the hot oil. Cook approximately 8 minutes, or until they are beautifully golden and completely done in the center. Continue cooking in small batches until you’ve used all the mixture. 

These Keftedes can be served hot, warm, or even cold out of the fridge. Serve them dipped in Tzatziki as a fresh-tasting, and delicious appetizer. 

Grilled Keftedes 

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound ground lamb ( You can substitute with beef if preferred)
  • 4 slices of white bread (torn into pieces) 
  • ⅓ cup whole milk
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • ¼ cup oregano
  • 5 fresh mint leaves, chopped 
  • 4 cloves minced garlic 
  • 3 medium eggs
  • Sea salt (to taste)
  • Red pepper flakes (to taste) 

For Serving::

  • Plain Greek yogurt 
  • Fresh lemon slices 


Directions:

  • Soak the bread in a bowl with milk. Add all the other ingredients and mix well with your hands—until everything is completely combined. 
  • By hand, form the mixture into several individual sized meatballs. 
  • Place the Keftedes on a hot grill and cook about 9 minutes, or until beautifully brown on the outside and no longer pink in the center.

Serve them hot off the grill with fresh lemon slices and Greek yogurt for dipping. Wonderful!

Keftedes with Pork and Beef 

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound ground beef 
  • ½ pound ground pork 
  • 1 medium red onion, chopped 
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup breadcrumbs
  • 2 eggs
  • ⅓ cup fresh chopped parsley
  • 8 chopped mint leaves 
  • 3 tbsp Extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 teaspoon dried oregano
  • salt and pepper (to taste)
  • oil ( for frying) 
  • flour (for dredging)

For Serving:

  • Lemon 
  • Tzatziki (for dipping)

Directions:

  • Blend all the ingredients, with your hands, in a large bowl. After it’s combined thoroughly, cover the bowl with plastic wrap and put it in the fridge for about an hour to allow the flavors to reach their full intensity. 
  • Remove from the fridge and roll individual sized meatballs. Dredge them in flour and shake off any excess. 
  • Heat oil in a pan and fry the meatballs, in small batches, just one layer at a time, until golden brown and perfectly done in the center. 

After draining the keftedes on paper towels, splash them with just a bit of fresh lemon juice and then dip in Tzatziki. Wonderful! 

If you want to serve Keftedes, but don’t have the time to make them from scratch, we have a great, and tasty, option for you. At Lemon and Vine, we make authentic Greek dishes, from scratch, using only the finest ingredients. And we make Keftedes! 

Our Keftedes are prepared with beef and lamb, and just the perfect blend of seasoning then simmered in tomato sauce for a delectable balance of flavors. All you will need to do is heat and serve. 

You can find these, and other amazing Lemon and Vine products, at your local grocery store in the freezer aisle. For more information, and for a list of all our Greek dishes, check us out.

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