Low Carb Keto Meatballs that are tender, flavorful, and use minimal ingredients. You are going to love how quickly these keto meatballs pull together.
You can make these low carb meatballs in an oven or a slow cooker!
Just make sure to save room for dessert. This Keto Chocolate Mug Cake is perfect and ready in a minute or two.
We have a couple of options for making these Low Carb Keto Meatballs so be sure to check them out and make which one works best for your lifestyle.
I am working on a Keto Marinara Sauce. When I get it finished I'll update this post but until then Keto Pizza Sauce goes really well with these meatballs.
Why you'll Love these Keto Meatballs
First off, the flavor of these keto meatballs is insanely delicious. These low carb meatballs are packed with healthy ingredients and savory spices, so the flavor is truly out of this world.
Second, these keto meatballs are simple to make and they use minimal ingredients. Also, these meatballs work with all types of sauces like BBQ sauce, marinara sauce, and cream based sauces.
They also store really well, which we share more about below. They are truly perfect, juicy meatballs and can be made by anyone.
For an allergy friendly meatball recipe, try these Gluten Free Dairy Free Meatballs.
What meat do you use to make keto meatballs?
For this low carb meatball recipe you can use beef, chicken, or turkey. They all work beautifully and if you'd like you can use a combination of meats.
The key is in the fat content of the meat you are using. Chicken and turkey tend to be leaner, so you’ll want to use a 93% – 98% lean beef to make these keto meatballs.
Dairy Free Keto Meatballs
If you can’t have dairy you can always leave the Parmesan out or substitute in your favorite dairy-free cheese.
The Parmesan adds to the flavor and texture but these low carb meatballs will still be tender and flavorful without it.
Ingredients to Make Low Carb Meatballs
Ground beef - You can also use ground pork, or ground chicken, or ground turkey, or a combination of ground meat. When we make up a double batch of juicy keto meatballs, we like to mix two different proteins.
Parmesan cheese - Fresh grated is better, in our opinion, but you can use store bought grated parmesan.
Salt - For flavor and to enhance the other flavors.
Black Pepper - For flavor. Use as much or as little as you like.
Onion Powder - For flavor. Make sure you're using onion powder, not onion salt.
Garlic Powder - For flavor. Make sure you're using garlic powder, not garlic salt.
Dried Parsley - We recommend using dried parsley but you can add fresh chopped parsley if you like.
Egg - Don't leave this out! It helps hold everything together and adds more fat and protein.
You could also use dried gluten free bread, if you don't need to keep these strictly keto.
For a list of quantities, please see the recipe card below.
How to make Low Carb Meatballs
You guys are going to think I’m ridiculous, but it only take five easy steps to make gluten-free meatballs.
- Preheat your oven and line your baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Mix all the ingredients in one large bowl.
- Roll the meat mixture into balls. You can also use a small cookie scoop.
Yeah, it’s that easy. And it’s less expensive than buying the same amount of low carb meatballs at the store. Please do yourself a favor and give this low carb keto meatball recipe a try next time you are craving them.
Freezing Keto Meatballs
If you are going to freeze some of these low carb meatballs, you'll want to bake them first. After they bake, let them cool to room temperature, and then freeze them in a airtight container or freezer bag.
They should stay good in the freezer for up to 3 months, depending on the conditions of the freezer.
When you are ready to enjoy these low carb meatballs, you can reheat them like you would any other frozen cooked meatball, without the need to thaw, in an oven or microwave.
We recommend not adding any sauce to these homemade keto meatballs until you're ready to enjoy them.
Low Carb Meatballs in a Slow Cooker
We love serving easy low carb meatballs at parties and BBQ’s. Sometimes we toss them in a slow cooker and let them cook in our favorite sauce – one jar of a keto friendly marinara sauce + one jar of our Keto salsa recipe.
Here’s what you need to do to cook keto meatballs in a slow cooker.
Pour 28-32 oz of your favorite keto friendly tomato based meatball sauce (or 1 jar of keto friendly marinara sauce + 14 oz. of your favorite salsa) into a slow cooker.
Tuck each meatball into the sauce, making sure that they are submerged. Cover and cook on high for 4 hours or on low for 6 hours.
Not all slow cookers are created equal, so please check to make sure that the internal temperature for the meatballs is at least 160F, or that you can’t see any pink.
You can keep these low carb tender meatballs warm on the warm setting, just make sure to give them a stir before you serve them.
Tips for the Best Keto Meatballs
To achieve the best meatballs, here are a few tips
- Don't overmix the meat mixture - this may cause dense, hard meatballs.
- Gently form the keto meatballs - you don't want to roll them too tightly.
- If you want a golden crust on your low carb meatballs - simply fry them in a skillet using a little bit of oil for 5 to 6 minutes before baking.
- Add moisture - our favorite way to stop meatballs from drying out is to sneak a little bit of veggies into your meat mixture. Mushrooms and Zucchini are perfect, as they release a lot of moisture as they cook. Also a nice way to sneak in some nutrition.
How best to store your Keto Meatballs
- Fridge - Allow your delicious low carb meatballs to cool before placing into an airtight container. Best stored for 5 to 7 days.
- Reheat - You can reheat your keto meatballs in the microwave or in a 350 degree oven. Stovetop works as well, just add a little water to the pan to ensure you end up with moist meatballs.
- Meal Prep - If you like to plan ahead, store your homemade meatballs in desired serving portions. This way it's a quick reheat and your dinner is ready. An easy meal for those busy weeknights.
- Freezer - as mentioned earlier, it is best to freeze no longer than three months. Even though the USDA says meat can be frozen indefinitely, after three months it starts to lose its quality and texture.
Ways to Serve Low Carb Meatballs
These low carb Italian meatballs pair perfectly with:
- Keto-Friendly Pasta - like our Garlic Parmesan Zucchini Noodles. You can also purchase low carb pastas like Miracle Noodles or Spaghetti Squash.
- Veggies - serve your tender meatballs over our Parmesan Roasted Brussels Sprouts, Sauteed Zucchini or Keto Green Bean Casserole.
- Keto Bread - make a meatball sub using keto bread or mini sliders using keto rolls
- Appetizer - wow your guests by serving these delicious keto meatballs with other appetizers like Keto Stuffed Mushrooms, Keto Mozzarella Sticks or add them as part of a Keto Charcuterie board.
How many Carbs in a Keto Meatball?
Our low carb meatball recipe has 0 grams of net carbs. If you add a Keto tomato sauce, the net carbs will rise to 3 grams.
Why are Meatballs not Keto?
Traditional meatballs are made with breadcrumbs or oatmeal, so they are way too high in carbs to work on a strict keto diet.
By switching the breadcrumbs to Almond meal or cheese or another keto friendly binder, you can easily make the best keto meatballs.
Below are a few popular places that serve meatballs. As you will see, to keep your daily carb count in line with your keto goals, it's best to make your own keto meatballs.
Are Ikea Meatballs Keto?
A serving of 5 Ikea meatballs has 4 grams of net carbs, so they are low carb but not exactly keto. As with regular meatballs, its the breadcrumbs.
Are Subway Meatballs Keto Friendly?
Subway also uses breadcrumbs in their meatballs, so they are not keto friendly.
Are Costco Meatballs Keto Friendly?
5 Costco meatballs have around 5 grams of net carbs. Not terrible, but also not great for a strict keto diet.
25 Keto Ground Beef Recipes
Here are some of the best low carb ground beef recipes that we have and some others from our favorite bloggers.
Keto Meatloaf - A no-fail Low Carb Meatloaf Recipe that’s easy to make, packed with flavor, and comforting any night of the week.
Keto Big Mac Salad - A delicious version of the classic big mac sandwich, this Big Mac Salad is comfort in a bowl. It offers all of the flavors of a traditional big mac but in a healthy low-carb recipe without the bun. This gluten free, keto big mac salad is packed with protein and ready in just 15 minutes.
These Keto Stuffed Peppers are made the classic way with ground beef, tomato, garlic, onion and spices topped with melty cheese. They are a simple keto ground beef recipe.
For the rest of the list plus 20 Keto Friendly side dishes, read our round up of Keto Ground Beef Recipes.
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- 1 lb. 93% lean ground beef (or pork, chicken, or turkey)
- ¼ cup almond meal (or an additional ¼ cup of Parmesan cheese)
- ¼ grated Parmesan cheese
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 tablespoons dried parsley
- 1 egg
- Preheat your oven to 375°F.
- Line a 13x9-inch baking sheet with parchment paper; set aside.
- In large bowl, mix all ingredients. Shape meatball mixture into 24 (1 ½-inch) meatballs. Place meatballs 1 inch apart on your baking sheet.
- Bake uncovered for 18 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 160°F.
- Serve warm with your favorite keto friendly sauce.
- Slow Cooker Option: Pour 28-32 oz of your favorite keto friendly tomato based meatball sauce (or 1 jar of keto friendly marinara sauce + 14 oz. of your favorite salsa) into a slow cooker. Tuck each meatball into the sauce, making sure that they are submerged. Cover and cook on high for 4 hours or on low for 6 hours.
- Dairy-Free Option: If you can't have dairy you can always leave the Parmesan out or substitute in your favorite dairy-free cheese.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 3 meatballs
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 151Total Fat: 8gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 74mgSodium: 195mgCarbohydrates: 1gFiber: 1gSugar: 0gProtein: 18g
These macro's include using almond flour but do not include the keto friendly marinara sauce. Please check your ingredients nutritional information for an actual count.