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Juicy Greek fried meatballs (keftedes) f3

Juicy Greek fried meatballs (Keftedes)

These juicy fried meatballs are Greeceā€™s favorite finger food. With the tomato salsa and the black garlic chimichurri, they're even better!
Course Appetizer, finger food, Main Course
Cuisine Mediterranean
Keyword Greek, keftedes, meatballs
Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 45 -50 meatballs
Author The Hungry Bites


  • For the meatballs:
  • 1.5 pounds (700 grams) minced beef
  • 0.7 pounds (300 grams) minced pork (or you can use all beef)
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped or grated
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons fine sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped parsley
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tomato, grated
  • 1/4 cup fresh mint, finely chopped (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder (it tenderizes the meat)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 cups (180-200 grams) breadcrumbs
  • 2-4 tablespoons water

  • 1/4 cup white wine or ouzo (for wetting your hands while shaping the meatballs)
  • Olive oil or vegetable oil for frying

  • For the tomato salsa:
  • 1 large tomato, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon e.v. olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon capers
  • 1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 4-5 fresh basil leaves, chopped

  • For the black garlic chimichurri:
  • 1/2 cup e.v. olive oil
  • 2-3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup parsley, very finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon sweet red pepper flakes (bukovo)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1-2 cloves black garlic, finely grated or minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano


  1. Combine all the ingredients for the meatballs in a large bowl, except the water, and mix well with your hands until homogenized.

    Start adding the water, one tablespoon at a time, until a soft mixture is formed. You may not need all the water.

    Store the mixture in the fridge for at least half an hour.

  2. Pour the wine or ouzo in a small plate and wet your hands. Take a small quantity of the meat mixture and shape into a 1 1/2 inch ball. Continue with the rest of the meatballs, each time wetting your hands before shaping.

  3. Pour some oil into a large frying pan, about 1 inch high and heat over medium/high temperature.

    Fry the meatballs in batches, until browned on one side, flip and fry from the other side (about 8-10 minutes total)

  4. For the tomato and feta salsa transfer all the ingredients in a bowl and mix to combine. Leave in the fridge for one hour for the flavors to develop.
  5. For the black garlic chimichurri, shake olive oil and lemon juice in a shaker, add the rest of the ingredients and mix well. Pour into a bowl and leave in the fridge for one hour for the flavors to develop.
  6. Serve the Greek fried meatballs with fries, baked potatoes, or fluffy rice. Accompany with the two salsas.


Recipe Notes

You can make the black garlic chimichurri in a food processor, but pay attention not to overwork the mixture