Meatball Calculator

Meatball recipes vary greatly in the number of meatballs they yield. The amount you can expect to get out of a recipe depends on the quantity of ground meat, liquid, breadcrumbs, egg, and other ingredients, plus the size of the balls you form.

You can use the calculator below to estimate the number of meatballs a recipe will yield, and to compare different recipes. If a recipe results in too many meatballs, you can halve the amount of each ingredient. Likewise, if a recipe yields too few meatballs, you can double or triple each ingredient's measure.

Ground Meat
(Beef, Turkey, Italian sausage)
Breadcrumbs c
Liquid c
Minced Fresh Herbs,
Minced Garlic, Chopped Onion
Other Ingredients c
Raw Meatball Diameter in

Enter ground meat in pounds, eggs by number, and other ingredients by cups. Enter the diameter of raw meatballs in inches. Note that 1 teaspoon = 1/48 cup and 1 tablespoon = 1/16 cup. For example, to include 5 tablespoons of other meatball ingredients, enter 5/16 cups. Or to include 7 teaspoons of other ingredients, enter 7/48 cups.

You can enter either decimals or fractions. If entering mixed fractions or a sum of fractions, use the "+" symbol. For example, all of the following are acceptable ways to enter 2 ⅓ cups plus 4 teaspoons:

2 + 1/3 + 4/48
2.333 + 4/48
2.333 + 1/12
2 + 20/48
2 + 5/12

This calculator assumes that one pound of raw ground meat has a volume of approximately 2 cups. One pound of ground beef with 15% fat has slightly more volume than one pound of leaner meat, however, the difference is negligible.

Raw meat is high in water, but much of that moisture evaporates when it is cooked. Thus, fully cooked meatballs have a smaller diameter than when they are raw. One cup of raw meatball mixture makes about 26 to 29 one-inch balls.

Meatball Making Tips: Don't over-mix the ingredients or else the meatballs will turn out tough and dense. If using Italian sausage, you don't need to use as many spices. If you don't have bread crumbs on hand, 4 bread slices ≈ 1 cup breadcrumbs. Stuffing mix can also be used in place of bread crumbs.

© Had2Know 2010