Keftedes — Greek Meatballs with Herbs

keftedes greek meatballs

Recipes | December 1, 2018 | By

Keftedes — Greek Meatballs with Herbs — Make Any Appetizer Spread Shine

I’ve never met a meatball I didn’t like. And I especially love Keftedes — Greek Meatballs with Herbs. They’re a simple mix of ground beef or lamb enhanced with garlic, onion, and fresh herbs like mint and parsley. Their simplicity makes them the perfect addition to any mezze  spread or platter. They are often a fixture on my appetizer table when I throw one of my pop-up dinners, or cook an intimate dinner for my Los Angeles personal chef clients. They pair perfectly with the thick tangy Greek yogurt in a tzaziki sauce. Also, you can make a meal out of them by teaming them with a fresh Greek salad or simple rice pilaf. Is there anything better? Find out how to make them below.

Variations on Keftedes

I love using ground lamb in this recipe. It brings a heartiness and depth that ground beef doesn’t always have. Ground beef will do in a pinch though. If you opt for it, forgo the leaner blends and indulge in an 80/20 mix. Fat is flavor and you will notice it here. Don’t skimp.

Keftedes are also often lightly fried or pan-fried. In this recipe I’m making it a little more healthy and easier by baking them instead. They won’t brown like they would on the stovetop, but you also won’t have to be baby sitting batches of them and cleaning up oil that they spit onto your stove. You can also switch up the ingredients you use for them. In this recipe, I call for using fresh mint and parsley and dried oregano. Additional herbs like dill and thyme are also fantastic. Customize them to your taste. You can add more onion or garlic as well.

Keftedes step-by-step


How to Greek Herbed Meatballs (Keftedes) by xtinaxenos on Jumprope.

Keftedes Recipe

Keftedes — Greek Herbed Meatballs

Greek, Mediterranean
Servings: 4 servings


  • 1 pound ground beef (80/20) or lamb
  • 1 onion, grated
  • 2 garlic clove, grated
  • 3 tablespoons mint, chiffonade
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1 cup breadcrumbs
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons parsley, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon kefalotiri or romano cheese grated
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Add all ingredients to a mixing bowl.
  3. Combine together without overtaxing. Over-mixing will make the meatball tough.
  4. Portion meatballs out onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or aluminum foil.
  5. Bake meatballs for 20 minutes.


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