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Quick and easy Whole30 meatballs combine ground beef with simple seasonings and a rich tomato-ey marinara sauce for an easy Italian dinner that’s totally compliant. Great for meal prep and busy evenings, serve them with your favorite veggies or veggie noodles for a satisfying meal.

Whole30 Italian meatballs in a cast-iron skillet with marinara sauce.

What Makes This Recipe So Good

  • These Whole30 meatballs are such a quick and easy dish that I just know they’ll end up part of your regular rotation. They’re ready to eat in roughly 30 minutes so they’re perfect for busy evenings when you just want something convenient and compliant.
  • They’re perfectly seasoned with garlic, salt, and pepper. So simple, but so delicious. And since the seasoning is so basic, these meatballs go with almost anything – veggie noodles, broccoli, asparagus, mashed potatoes, whatever!
  • Meatballs are great for meal prep. They store and reheat really well, especially when you refrigerate them in the sauce. Just be sure to use an airtight container and they’ll keep up to 6 days.

Chef’s Tips

  • Lean ground beef can dry out fairly easily since they have a low fat content. Be careful not to overcook the meatballs – you want them just browned at first, and then fully cooked-through with the sauce.
  • Pro tip: quarter your onion and toss it in the food processor with your fresh herbs and garlic cloves. It’ll cut your prep time down to basically nothing, plus saves you the trouble of all that chopping. You can pulse the ingredients as finely or as coarsely as you’d like, it’s totally up to you.
A Whole30 Italian meatball being lifted out of a cast iron skillet with a wooden spoon.

More Whole30 Recipes You’ll Love

Recipe By: Cheryl Malik

Whole30 Meatballs with Marinara Sauce

Prep 15 minutes
Cook 15 minutes
Total 30 minutes
Quick and easy Whole30 meatballs are the perfect, compliant way to satisfy your Italian dinner cravings.
6 servings


  • Large bowl
  • Cookie scoop with release handle or tablespoon
  • plate or baking sheet
  • Large skillet
  • plate or bowl


  • 2 pounds lean ground beef
  • 1 cup finely chopped yellow onion
  • cup roughly chopped fresh herbs equal parts parsley, thyme, and basil
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • 1 large egg beaten
  • ¼ cup almond flour
  • salt to taste
  • pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons neutral oil like avocado oil or olive oil
  • 3 cups Whole30-compliant marinara sauce
  • fresh basil optional, for serving
  • zucchini noodles optional, for serving


  • In large bowl, thoroughly combine ground beef, chopped onion, fresh herbs, garlic, egg, almond flour, salt, and pepper.
  • Use cookie scoop or tablespoon to portion out ground beef mixture into meatballs, each containing 2 tablespoons of mixture. Quickly roll meatball between palms to round out, then place on plate or baking sheet. Continue until all ground beef mixture has been portioned.
  • Heat neutral oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Once oil is hot and shimmering, add meatballs, being careful not to overcrowd skillet. Cook 3 to 5 minutes, turning frequently, until meatballs are browned on all sides. Transfer to plate or bowl and repeat until all meatballs have been cooked.
  • Once all meatballs are browned, return all to skillet and add marinara sauce. Stir well to coat meatballs, then bring to simmer over medium heat and cook 5 to 8 minutes, until sauce is hot and meatballs are cooked through.
  • Divide meatballs and sauce into equal portions and serve with fresh basil and zucchini noodles, if desired.
  • Marinara Sauce: Make sure to use a marinara that doesn’t contain any added sugars or other ingredients that aren’t Whole30-compliant.

Approximate Information for One Serving

Serving Size: 1servingCalories: 400calProtein: 37gFat: 22gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 125mgSodium: 535mgPotassium: 999mgTotal Carbs: 10gFiber: 2gSugar: 6gNet Carbs: 8gVitamin A: 326IUVitamin C: 7mgCalcium: 62mgIron: 5mg
Nutrition Disclaimers
Number of total servings shown is approximate. Actual number of servings will depend on your preferred portion sizes.
Nutritional values shown are general guidelines and reflect information for 1 serving using the ingredients listed, not including any optional ingredients. Actual macros may vary slightly depending on specific brands and types of ingredients used.
To determine the weight of one serving, prepare the recipe as instructed. Weigh the finished recipe, then divide the weight of the finished recipe (not including the weight of the container the food is in) by the desired number of servings. Result will be the weight of one serving.

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