If you're craving a taste of Greece that will transport your taste buds to the Mediterranean, then get excited for this dish! This traditional keftedakia Greek meatballs recipe is here to satisfy your culinary wanderlust. These mouthwatering meatballs are one of my favorite Greek recipes.
If you are a big fan of meatballs, this Greek keftedakia can be a fun way to switch things up. Unlike traditional Italian meatballs, keftedakia are traditionally made with two different kinds of meat, feta cheese, and a variety of herbs and spices.
Why You'll Love These Traditional Greek Keftedakia Meatballs
- Dinner in 30 - This Greek keftedakia recipe puts a fulfilling, flavorful dinner on your table in just 30 minutes!
- • Meal Switcher - These keftedakia meatballs are great for a variety of occasions. Serve them with pita for a weekend lunch, or with more sides for a complete dinner. They make a great party appetizer or potluck dish!
Basic Ingredients for Keftedakia
- Ground Beef - You will need ½ pound of ground beef. You may choose to use all beef, but I recommend splitting it so that you can achieve the ideal texture.
- Ground Pork - Keftedakia meat is part of what makes it unique from traditional meatballs. You should supplement with ½ pound ground pork or lamb. If you dislike pork and lamb, you can always add another ½ pound of ground beef.
- Eggs - Egg will act as your binder for your keftedakia. You just need one large egg.
Seasonings for Greek Meatballs
- Red Wine Vinegar - You will need 3 tbsp red wine vinegar. If you run out, you can substitute apple cider vinegar or rice vinegar.
- Salt & Pepper - You will need ½ tsp of salt and ¼ tsp of pepper to season your keftedakia.
- Paprika - ½ tsp smoked paprika will add a lovely element of zest to your keftedakia.
- Cumin - You will need just ¼ tsp of ground cumin for your spice blend. If you are out of cumin, try subbing ground coriander.
- Garlic - Garlic is essential to any great seasoning blend! You will need ½ tsp garlic powder.
- Parsley - Fresh herbs are a quintessential ingredient in a great keftedakia. You will need ¼ cup fresh, chopped parsley.
- Mint - Mint adds an element that makes these meatballs totally crave worthy. You will need 1 tbsp. of fresh mint. You should make sure it is finely chopped so that your meatballs don’t fall apart.
- Feta - You will need ½ cup crumbled feta. You may want more for garnish!
- Breadcrumbs - Breadcrumbs act as a binder for your meatballs. You will need ½ cup.
- Flour - Since this is a fried meatball recipe, they will get rolled in a little flour. It should take about 1 cup of all-purpose flour!
- Oil - Prepare the neutral frying oil of your choice. You will need enough oil to do a shallow fry. Olive oil by the way is not a neutral oil.
- Lemon - Lemon makes a nice garnish for this dish. You should also finish your meatballs with a little lemon juice. Fresh lemon juice works best!
- Garnishes - You may wish to garnish your meatballs with additional fresh parsley, mint, feta, or sliced lemon.
- For a vegetarian alternative, prepare the recipe exactly the same, but using plant-based meat crumbles instead of the ground beef mixture
- This recipe is easy to make gluten-free. Simply substitute gluten-free breadcrumbs and flour.
How to Make Keftedakia Meatballs
- Combine the ground pork, beef, red wine vinegar and egg. To the ground beef and ground beef meat mixture add the salt, pepper, smoked paprika, cumin, garlic powder, chopped mint, parsley, feta and bread crumbs. Mix until thoroughly combined.
- Scoop meatball mixture and pack into even sized balls.
- Roll the formed meatballs in a light coating of flour.
- Heat oil in a pan, over medium heat, and shallow fry the meatballs until golden on all sides. Meatballs should reach an internal temperature of 165F.
- Set aside to drain grease and garnish with a spritz of fresh lemon juice.
- Serve with pita, tzatziki or hummus as desired as a main course or with toothpicks as an appetizer.
Start by mixing your meats! In a large mixing bowl, combine your ground beef and pork. Add your red wine vinegar and egg. Bring the flavor! Add your salt, pepper, paprika, cumin, garlic powder, parsley, mint, feta and breadcrumbs. Combine your mixture until it is evenly mixed.
Next, turn your meat into meatballs! An ice cream scoop works great for this step. Scoop the meat out, and gently pack the balls so that they are evenly sized. It should yield about 12-14 meatballs. Roll your meatballs in the flour. Remember, you just need a light coating to give your meatballs that outer crisp.
Now it is time to fry your meatballs! Heat your frying oil in a pan over medium heat. When the oil is hot, add your meatballs and shallow fry them until they are golden brown on all sides. To check for doneness, make sure they reach an internal temperature of 165F.
Remove your meatballs from the heat and set them aside on a paper towel lined plate to cool and drain. Finish them with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice. Enjoy your keftedakia meatballs warm as is or with pita, tzatziki, or hummus.
- If you forget the breadcrumbs, don’t fret! You can soak some bread in a little milk to make an awesome binder. Only leave the bread in the milk for a few minutes, until it softens. Then, gently squeeze out the excess liquid and crumble the bread into your meat mixture.
- Put a little oil on your hands before forming the meatballs. This will help keep the meat from sticking to your hands.
- You can also air fryer these meat balls for faster less mess cooking and also to make it a little more healthier compared to fried meatballs.
- Leftovers will last up to 4 days in the refrigerator.
- You can keep your keftedakia meatballs in the freezer for up to 2 months.
- Reheat in the microwave for 60 seconds.
- Wondering what to serve with greek meatballs? A little sauce goes a long way. Keftedakia with tzatziki is a classic. Hummus, tahini, and yogurt are also great options for dipping.
- Keftedakia is delicious on its own as a finger food, but it can be an MVP in some really tasty meals. Serve it with pita on the side, or as a part of pita sandwiches. Serve it with a greek side salad. A warm side of rice pilaf is another classic side with keftedakia.
Keftedes and keftedakia are quite similar. The main differences between these dishes is that keftedes are larger, and sometimes people bake them, while keftedakia are smaller and fried.
Egg and breadcrumbs are a key component in most meatball recipes because they are what holds the meatballs together. If you have an egg allergy, there are egg alternatives that may work, such as egg replacer, flax meal, or cream
A thin outer layer of flour can really benefit meatballs for a variety of reasons. It helps to give a nice crispy outer layer that protects the moist, juicy inside. It also promotes browning and willl bind your meatballs.
Looking for more delicious dinner recipes? Try These:
Keftedakia Meatballs Recipe
- ½ lb. Ground Beef
- ½ lb. Ground Pork may sub for lamb or just use beef alone
- 1 large Eggs
- 3 tbsp Red Wine Vinegar
- ½ tsp Salt
- ¼ tsp Pepper
- ½ tsp Smoked Paprika
- ¼ tsp Ground Cumin
- ½ tsp Garlic Powder
- 1 tbsp Fresh Mint Leaves finely chopped
- ¼ cup Fresh Parsley finely chopped
- ½ cup Feta Cheese crumbled
- ½ cup Bread Crumbs
- 1 cup All Purpose Flour
- Neutral Cooking Oil for frying
- Extras for Garnishing- Lemon Slices Fresh Parsley, Feta
- Combine the ground pork, beef, red wine vinegar and egg.
- To the meat mixture add the salt, pepper, smoked paprika, cumin, garlic powder, chopped mint, parsley, feta and bread crumbs. Mix until thoroughly combined.
- Scoop meatball mixture and pack into even sized balls.
- Roll the formed meat balls in a light coating of flour.
- Heat oil in a pan, over medium heat, and shallow fry the meatballs until golden on all sides and reaches an internal temperature of 165F.
- Set aside with to drain grease and garnish with a spritz of fresh lemon juice.
- Serve with pita, tzatziki or hummus as desired.