The Calories in Meatballs

spaghetti and meatballs
A plate of spaghetti with tomato sauce and meatballs. (Image: rez-art/iStock/Getty Images)

The calories in pan-fried meatballs made with beef, pork or lamb can really add up if you don't watch your serving size. Making your meatballs with lower-calorie ingredients, such as chicken, turkey or fish, and baking or steaming them can help you limit the amount of calories you consume. Keep in mind that the sauce the meatballs are served in will also contribute some calories.

Calorie Comparisons

A homemade recipe using a mix of lean ground turkey, lean beef, egg whites, bread and Parmesan cheese has about 80 calories per 2-inch baked meatball. Using lean ground turkey, rolled oats, Parmesan cheese, zucchini, carrot and onion results in a more nutritious meatball, with 55 calories per 1-inch meatball topped with a sauce made with balsamic vinegar and ketchup. For a more exotic flavor, make meatballs with lean ground beef rolled in flour, pan-fried, then simmered in a peanut curry sauce. Each 1-inch meatball will have about 50 calories.

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