How Many Sides Does a Meatball Have, Anyway?

published Dec 10, 2014
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(Image credit: Olga Miltsova)

Q: Now that winter is upon us, and I foresee many hearty meatballs in the weekly repertoire, I’d like to ask a seemingly obvious question: When instructions say to brown meatballs “X minutes per side,” how many sides should be done? Two or four?

Would it differ based on the size of the meatball (four for larger ones)?

I’d love to know what everyone’s go-to is, as this instruction is very common but rarely gives specifics.

Sent by Elena

Editor: I think your instincts are right on here — two sides for smaller meatballs and four for larger ones. But my favorite way to brown meatballs is actually in the oven, not on the stove! It’s a fast way to brown the whole batch in one go, with no splattering of the cook or the stovetop.

Readers, how many sides of a meatball do you brown?