Try Smoking Meatballs On The Grill For Something New
I love grilling. In fact, I grill just about every nice day in the summer. It's nice to be cooking outside, and it's also nice to not warm up the house with the oven in the summer. But, even I will admit, by the time August comes around I get pretty sick of grilling the same things every week. So this last week I tried something new and smoked some homemade Italian meatballs on the grill.
You could really do this on any grill, but of course it will turn out better on a nice grill. I have a Traeger wood pellet grill that is pretty versatile, so that's what I used. If I didn't have my Traeger, I would have used my premium Weber kettle grill and used indirect heat. The big thing with grilling is always controlling the temperature of the grill. Temp is key for everything from cooking and knowing when your meat is done perfectly.
So here's a run down of what I did, and let me tell you it turned out fantastic.
I took two pounds of ground beef and mixed in 2 eggs along with a few handfulls of oatmeal. This is to make it all bind together. Depending on the meat and size of the eggs I adjust how much oatmeal to add. You could also use bread crumbs or crushed crackers, but oatmeal is the easiest for me. The consistency should not be runny but also still wet and sticky enough that you can form a ball. Before I mix it all together really good I add seasoning to the mix. I used about a table spoon of some of my favorite spices for this: garlic salt, oregano, italian seasoning, rosemary, basil, and a sprinkle of black ground pepper.
Once you mix it all up, place them separated on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper. If you were to put the meatballs right away on the grill, they may crumble through the grate.
Put the sheet on the grill and smoke it at a low temp for about 20 minutes or so. Try to keep the temp around 180-200 degrees.
Next use tongs to place the meatballs directly on the grill. Continue to smoke for another 20 minutes or so at the same low temp.
To finish them off, increase the temperature of the grill to the mid 300 range and use a thermometer to make sure the meat is done at 165 for safety. If you like it a little more pink in the middle, that's up to you.
And that's it! That easy. The nice thing about smoking the meatballs this way is that most of the fat runs out of it so it's a healthier option. The smoky flavor also adds a little something.