For Faster Meatballs With A Perfect Crust, Turn On Your Broiler

Meatballs: Just say the word, and associations of a comforting dinner are instantly evoked. Easily crafted from a variety of meats, many of which are affordable, it's no surprise the dish exists in many cuisines and interpretations. Yet, no matter the protein source and flavoring, the common question persists: What's the best way to cook meatballs to perfection?

A variety of options get the job done — many well — including searing, poaching in a sauce, baking, frying, and even steaming. Yet, when it comes to the efficiency and result, it's hard to beat broiling. Place the meaty morsels on a baking surface and throw them into the oven's broiler. They'll crisp up on the outside, trapping in delicious juices. And best of all, the entire process takes no more than ten minutes. Afterward, the result can still be simmered into a sauce without worry whether the interior's cooked through. Sounds tasty, right? Let's dive into the specifics.

Broil meatballs for a crispy, quick and delicious result

In addition to offering efficiency, broiling optimizes a meatball's flavor. That exterior crust integrates a mouthwatering element into the dish, especially when juxtaposed with an airier filling stuffed with bread crumbs. Plus, the cooking method minimizes the need for additional oil. Since the meat is near the heat source, the fat melts and redistributes during the short cooking process.

To ensure this direct heat cooks the meatball properly, it pays off to consider the cooking vessel. Ideally, reach for a broiler pan — the cut-open slots will help enable circulation. And if one isn't on hand, preheat a cast-iron skillet since its excellent insulation will cook meatballs from the bottom.

And although it may seem there's always an element to optimize, keep in mind meatballs are a forgiving dish. Even if the cooking process didn't go to plan, odds are it'll turn out tasty. Just make sure to use delicious ingredients and verify the internal temperature before serving.