Italian Bison Meatballs Recipe

Italian Bison Meatballs

These tasty Italian Bison Meatballs are perfect served alone as an appetizer, with a side of pasta or in an Italian roll topped with provolone or parmesan cheese for a quick meatball sub. No matter how you serve it, it’s sure to be a crowd-pleaser!
Course Appetizer
Cuisine Italian
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 4 people


  • 1 lb Ground Bison Meat
  • 1/4 cup panko bread crumbs - or gluten-free bread crumbs
  • 3 tablespoons whole milk
  • 1 large egg - lightly beaten
  • 1 clove finely chopped garlic
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 3 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
  • 1-1/4 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 28-oz can crushed tomatoes (or 2 14.5-oz cans crushed tomatoes)
  • 2 teaspoons Italian Seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves - for serving


  1. Combine panko (or gluten-free bread crumbs) and milk in a large bowl and let sit until softened, about 5 minutes.

  2. Add egg, garlic, parsley, onion powder, parmesan cheese, bison meat, 3/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Use hands to mix thoroughly and form into 16 1-1/2-inch meatballs. Place the meatballs on a parchment lined baking sheet.

  3. Heat a large high-sided skillet over medium-high heat. When hot add 1 tablespoon oil and half of the meatballs to the skillet. Gently brown on all sides, about 6 to 8 minutes and transfer to a plate. Repeat with remaining meatballs and 1 tablespoon oil. Reserve skillet.
  4. Reduce heat to medium. Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil to the reserved skillet along with the tomatoes, Italian seasoning, garlic powder, ½ teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Use a large spoon to stir and combine while scraping up the bottom of the pan. Bring to a simmer and add the meatballs.

  5. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer, gently stirring once or twice until meatballs are tender and sauce is thickened slightly, about 25 minutes.
  6. Transfer to a serving dish and garnish with fresh basil leaves.

Recipe Notes

Kid friendly. Gluten-free, if made with gluten-free breadcrumbs.

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