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Cheesy Meatball Bake

If you are craving comfort and looking for an indulgent meal, you found it! Right here is this irresistable cheesy meatball bake recipe! Imagine juicy meatballs nestled in a riche marinara sauce, topped with a blanket of goeey melted cheese stretches with every single forkful!

Pan of Cheesy Meatball Bake.

Easy Cheesy Meatball Bake Recipe

Each bite is a symphony of savory flavors that will leave you coming back for a whole lot more!

It’s easy and so cheesy, as my friend on social media says, “it slides down easy!”

This recipe is perfect for weeknights or casual gatherings with friends and family. With easy ingredients like ground beef, breadcrumbs, italian seasoning, mozzarella cheese, you can whip it up in to a hearty and delicious meal in no time at all.

Sure to become a household favorite, whether over pasta or served with crusty garlic bread, this mouthwatering dish is guaranteed to delight your tastebuds and leave you craving seconds.

You might have tried some of our other meatballs that are so popular here like these Frozen Meatballs or these Blow Your Mind Meatballs or Pepperoni Meatball Casserole!

Here’s What You’ll Need

  • Sauce ingredients like Onions, Peppers, Garlic and Tomatoes.
  • Meatball ingredients like ground beef, ground sausage, breadcrumbs and an egg.
  • Cheese, Glorious Mozzarella cheese to top it off!

Here’s How You Do It

1. Simply make the sauce. While that is simmering, mix and roll up those cute little meat balls. Take the sauce out of the iron skillet (or any oven safe skillet) and put the sauce in a bowl.

2. Now, put the meatballs where the sauce was in the frying pan. Let them cook – its ok if they stick to the bottom a little – that makes for MORE FLAVOR in the long run!

3. After the meatballs are done, add them to the sauce bowl. Deglaze your pan and dump it all back in there. Give it a gentle stir and top with cheese. Slap that bad boy into the oven – and all that is left is the waiting!

OH DELICIOUS WAITING! You will know when it is done – it will speak to you with hot bubbling cheese.

Pan of cheesy meatball bake on cutting board.

Tips and Tricks

  • I show this recipe in a cast iron skillet, however, that is just for the photos. Tomato sauce often affects the finish on your cast iron skillet. Use a skillet that you can transfer from stove top to oven like a whole stainless pan.
  • If you do need to reseason your pan, no worries, here is how you reseason a cast iron skillet, it’s easy too.
  • You’ll enjoy your dish more if you use a good quality tomato.
  • It’s fine to use breakfast sausage if you can’t locate any plain ground sausage.
  • Meatballs should always be cooked to an internal temperature of 160.

PRO TIP: Fresh Mozarella will give you a lovely flavor, it’s a softer cheese and melts like a dream and has a more milkly flavor.

Storage, Keeping and Reheating

This Cheesy Meatball bake keeps well in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 5 days.

I like to cover the leftovers well with freezer wrap and freeze for up to 3 months.

To reheat from the fridge, place into a 350 oven for 20 minutes.

To reheat from the freezer, allow to thaw for 24 hours in the refrigerator and then bake at 350 until hot and bubbly. You can cover with aluminum foil if the top begins to overbrown.

Watch Me Make This Recipe

I’d love to see the meatballs you made! Please come find me on social media and drop me a photo or just leave me a comment in the comment section below! I love to hear from you, answer your questions and read your comments. I answer every single one as soon as I can!

Thank you for visiting, I love and appreciate you so much and can’t wait to hear from you!  

cheesy meatball bake in pan.

Cheesy Meatball Bake

Cheesy Meatball Bake is cheese pulls full of deliciousness!
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Save Rate
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: American
Keyword: cheesy meatball bake
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Servings: 8 servings
Calories: 497kcal


For the Sauce

  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • 1 small onion finely chopped
  • 8 oz mushrooms sliced
  • ¼ Cup Green Bell Peppers
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 28 ox crushed tomatoes
  • 4 oz tomato paste
  • ¼ tsp red pepper flakes
  • 2 tsp raw sugar
  • ½ tsp cumin
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • ½ Cup heavy cream
  • ½ Cup chardonnay wine

For the Meatballs

  • 1 lb ground beef
  • ½ lb ground hot sausage
  • ½ cup bread crumbs
  • 1 finely minced shallot
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 2 sprigs fresh Rosemary chopped
  • ½ Cup freshly grated Parmesean Cheese
  • 2 cloves Garlic – minced
  • 1 large egg beaten
  • ¾ tsp kosher salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • 2 tbs olive oil

To Finish

  • 4 oz fresh mozzarella shredded
  • 4 tbs fresh grated mozerella
  • 2/3 tbs minced fresh basil for garnish


  • For the sauce
  • Heat olive oil in large oven proof skillet over medium high heat. Add the onion, mushroom and pepper and sauté till softened – about 3-4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for an additional minute. Add the crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, red pepper, sugar, cumin, salt and pepper. Stir and reduce heat to medium low – allow to cook down while making the meat balls – will thicken. Remove from the heat and place in a bowl – add the cream.
  • For the meatballs
  • In a large mixing bowl, combine the ground meat, bread crumbs, shallot, thyme, rosemary, parmesan, garlic, egg, salt and pepper. Using your hands, mix ingredients together until well combined. Form into 1 ½ inch meatballs.
  • In the skillet that the sauce was cooked in, heat olive oil over medium high heat. Cook meatballs (may need to cook in batches) – turning occasionally. The meatballs may stick to the skillet a little and that is ok – will deglaze in a moment. Once meatballs are browned on all sides, remove meatballs to the same bowl that the sauce is in.
  • Turn the burner up to medium high. When skillet is hot, add wine (can substitute chicken or beef broth). Scrape the browned bits from the bottom of the pan and allow the wine to bubbly and reduce by about half (5 mins). Remove skillet from the heat and add the bowl of sauce and meatballs to the skillet.
  • To finish:
  • Preheat the oven to 400. Sprinkle the mozerella and paremesean over the top of the meatballs and sauce and bake until heated through and cheese is melted and bubbly – about 15 minutes. Garnish with fresh basil. Serve warm.


cheese pulls and delicious!


Nutrition Facts
Cheesy Meatball Bake
Amount Per Serving
Calories 497 Calories from Fat 333
% Daily Value*
Fat 37g57%
Saturated Fat 15g75%
Trans Fat 1g
Polyunsaturated Fat 3g
Monounsaturated Fat 16g
Cholesterol 119mg40%
Sodium 854mg36%
Potassium 580mg17%
Carbohydrates 14g5%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 5g6%
Protein 25g50%
Vitamin A 732IU15%
Vitamin C 10mg12%
Calcium 241mg24%
Iron 3mg17%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Tried this recipe?Mention @loavesanddishes or tag #loavesanddishes!

This post originally appeared on the pages of Loaves and Dishes on December 25, 2014 and has been entirely updated with new information, recipe card and more!

A Verse to Share

Because this recipe was originally shared on Christmas day.

Luke 2:11

For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.

Wendi is the writer, CEO and dishwasher at Loaves and Dishes! When not in the kitchen or behind the computer, you can find Wendi serving on International Food Conference Boards, Speaking at various conferences, Leading and Cooking for the local Arts Council's "Taste of Stokes" events or donating home cooked goodies to various local non profits such as the Danbury Songwriters and Stokes Partnership for Children. Wendi is also a Registered Nurse with a Master's Degree and serves on her town's board of councilmen.

Recipe Rating


Friday 2nd of February 2018

Super star recipe!


Sunday 14th of February 2016

Would you suggest adjusting the ingredients if I used 1 lb hot sausage instead of the 1/2?

Wendi Spraker

Monday 15th of February 2016

Hi Renee! Thank you for visiting. Yes, if you really need or want to use the hot sausage, please remember that the meatballs will be hotter! Therefore, back the hamburger down to 1/2 lb and be very careful with any pepper or other spicy item that you might add. I think they will turn out good though and if you like the spicier flavor - that works out well for you! Great idea. :)


Tuesday 24th of February 2015

I prepared this once before to rave reviews at home. My son has requested it for his birthday dinner. What I can't remember is the size of the can of crushed tomatoes. Please help. Thank you.

Tuesday 24th of February 2015

Hi Cherry! Thank you for trying this dish and for visiting again! I always make this with my home canned tomatoes - which are in a quart jar. That would approximately equal the larger can of tomatoes you find at the grocery. I believe those are about 28 ounces or so. Thanks also for calling this to my attention - I'll will go in and correct the recipe immediately!

Miss Food Fairy

Saturday 3rd of January 2015

Thought I'd come past after seeing you at The Weekend Social party - these cheesy meatball bake looks delicious! Must try when it cools down here. I've pinned it for later reference. Thanks for sharing & giving me some new inspiration - I just love meatballs :)

Saturday 3rd of January 2015

Thanks so much! I hope you really love them! :)

Jaime Oliver

Wednesday 31st of December 2014

oh wow i love meatball and i love cheese so this is so so so totally down my street! mmmm #BestRecipes2014

Wednesday 31st of December 2014

Thanks for visiting Jaime! Enjoy! :)


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