Meatballs are a common choice for wedding fare because they are versatile, inexpensive and generally well-liked. If friends and family are doing the majority of the cooking, meatballs can be prepared well in advance and frozen, making cooking on the big day less frantic. Thaw the meatballs a day ahead of the reception so they will be easier to reheat and serve without the chance of serving a meatball with a frozen middle.


Multiply the number of guests by two or three to determine how many meatballs to serve per person. Of course, the size of the meatball also figures toward the final count. A regular serving size meatball is slightly less than the size of a golf ball. When serving mini-meatballs, count on preparing five to six per person.

Serve the meatballs as a finger food or appetizer at the reception. A serving tray can be arranged buffet-style for the guests to help themselves. Keep the meatballs in a warming pan because cold meatballs are not nearly as appetizing. Place toothpicks or tongs next to the serving dish.

Feature meatballs as part of a main dish. Classic dishes such as Italian style spaghetti and meatballs or Swedish meatballs served in a creamy white sauce might be popular as a family favorite. For a twist on a traditional theme or to upgrade the menu, experiment with different meats such as lamb or buffalo, or borrow from other culinary traditions by using Indian or Asian spices with savory rice instead of pasta.

Prepare meatballs for the vegans or vegetarians on the guest list. Create vegan “meatballs” by using soy products that have the texture and appearance of ground beef or by blending cooked lentils, brown rice, roasted vegetables and spices together before forming the mixture into balls. Unlike meat products, these do best when baked or steamed, as simmering them in a sauce could cause them to fall apart.

Tips

  • Do not laden the meatballs so heavily in sauce that people are afraid they will drip all over their finest clothes.