Porcupine Meatballs

My husband is a huge meatloaf and meatball fan. On occasion though, he’ll admit that the real reason he loves meatloaf is because it is the perfect vehicle for ketchup. Surprisingly, the kids all feel the same way too now. Our son sometimes even forgoes the “vehicle” all together and eats his ketchup with his fingers.

Since I am such a nice wife and mom, I decided we needed to mix up our ketchup-vehicle routine a little bit. I’ve wanted to try making porcupine meatballs for a long time. I love the fact that they’re almost a complete meal in and of themselves. Just add a veggie on the side and dinner’s done. (I suppose a cupful of ketchup could pass as a vegetable in a pinch too, right?)


Porcupine Meatballs

  • 1/2 lb. ground beef
  • 3 c. fully cooked rice (I used brown rice.)
  • 1 c. shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 t. Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 t. each – salt, garlic powder, pepper


1. Put all ingredients in a large bowl and combine. Press into large balls and bake at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes (more or less depending on the size of the meatballs), until beef is fully cooked.


(Before baking. I made these in the morning and kept them in the fridge all day.)

These were so good! They honestly do taste great on their own if you’re not a fan of food smothered in ketchup, which I’m not. I think this recipe could prove to be very versatile and I’m looking forward to playing around with it more. Plus, the meatballs will freeze perfectly either before or after baking, just like regular meatballs.

Stop by We Are THAT Family for more Works For Me Wednesday.

27 thoughts on “Porcupine Meatballs

  1. My grandma used to make these, by the same name too! We have been using your recipes this week. Tonight we had the loaded baked potato soup and it was delicious. Absolutely fabulous. It will definitely go down as a favorite meal for my husband and I. Last night I made homemade noodles and everyone LOVED them too. Thanks for the meal planning!

  2. They look amazing! I made Parmesan meatballs today but am looking for different types of meatballs to make. Definitely will be making these soon! Thanks for sharing!

  3. Oh these look delicious! Thanks for the recipe, I’ve been looking for something different to try with ground beef and these will fit the bill! I could see how these would work really well with some parmesan and garlic too. And maybe a little marinara on the side for me. Since my family also enjoys ketchup more then I do! Just discovered your blog, and Im really enjoying it.

  4. My Granny made these too but a little differently. She always used raw rice and cooked the meatballs in a tomato sauce of sorts that started with canned tomato soup. I’ve changed the sauce a little bit to give it a bit more kick, but I never thought to use cooked brown rice to spead up the process.

    I’ve got some hamburger hanging around just for this recipe!

  5. Another hit! I do have one question, however…what’s the side dish you have in the photo? looks yummy!

  6. Ok, these tasted great, but didn’t hold the ball shape, they fell completely apart once they were cooked…. did I not pack them enough, or did I miss a binder in the recipe?

  7. These are really good. I am glad I made a double batch for the freezer! Got me thinking … I wonder what spices are in Dirty Rice? I wonder if adding in some cajun/creole seasoning if it would taste like Dirty Rice Meatballs 🙂 I have only had dirty rice out of a box mix where you add your own meat.

  8. I love this recipe! I made some today and used lean ground turkey meat instead of ground beef. I used poultry seasoning instead of the Italian seasoning. I also added some diced onion, celery and bell pepper to the baking pan around the meatballs before cooking. They turned out perfectly. Thank so much. I will be making theses quite often.

  9. I am also a huge fan of meatloaf, meatballs, and all things drenched in ketchup. :>) Is there a support group for that? Further, I am a huge fan of porcupine meatballs, but my recipe(s) call for uncooked rice then simmering in a (ketchup-based, of course) sauce forEVER. Last time I made them, I used brown rice and it took a looooong time in the crockpot to get that done, then the meatballs fell apart. Tasted good, though. Anyway. I love the addition of cheese!! I linked to this on my weekly roundup, the post is under my name. Thanks so much!!

  10. nice information but when ı reading article ,ı’m really strain. YOur theme is super but so slow and sidebar is brokedown. İf you fix it your site is be perfect : )

  11. This recipe had been in our family for years, my Mother-in-law would form them in the shape of a croquette, this way they cooked evenly and did not loose their shape. The secret is to use a cheap ketchup never Heinz. The ketchup is poured on top and then continue to bast them with the ketchup as they cook. Perfect for the ketchup fans in the family.

  12. An interesting discussion is worth comment. I feel that you should write more on this subject, it won’t be a taboo subject but usually people are not enough to speak on such topics. To the next. Cheers

  13. .) I’m impressed, I must say. Really rarely do I encounter a blog that’s both educative and entertaining, and let me tell you, you have hit the nail on the head. Your idea is outstanding; the issue is something that not enough people are speaking intelligently about. I am very happy that I stumbled across this in my search for something relating to this.

  14. .) There are some interesting points in time in this article but I don’t know if I see all of them center to heart. There is some validity but I will take hold opinion until I look into it further. Good article , thanks and we want more! Added to FeedBurner as well

  15. .) You made some decent points there. I looked on the internet for the issue and found most individuals will go along with with your website.

  16. I’m not a very experienced cook so could you explain how you bake them in the oven? Cookie sheet? Baking dish? Covered not covered?
    Thank you so much, I just can’t wait to make these!

Comments are closed.