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How To Cook Frozen Meatballs In Air Fryer

Did you know you can cook frozen meatballs in the air fryer? 

It’s super easy and fast. Add a few from the bag in one layer, and heat at 425F for about six minutes. They come out with a sizzling crisp edge and are heated through perfectly without becoming rubbery. 

Once your frozen meatballs come out of the air fryer, you can add to your favorite sauce or gravy, add some grated cheese, or both!

The air fryer is great for reheating lots of different frozen foods to perfection, and the super-heated dry air makes quick work of frozen meatballs too. 

For this recipe, we used a pretty standard-sized meatball, not minis or extra large ones, so about an 1.5-in diameter. They do need to be turned in the middle of cooking to make sure they have a well rounded cook, but a good pair of tongs will help with that, no problem.

Your handy-dandy air fryer is absolutely the best way to cook frozen meatballs! If you’re wanting dinner on the table fast, pull out that bag of frozen meatballs and get started with our simple recipe.

This is a close up of meatballs on a plate.

Tips For Making Frozen Meatballs in Air Fryer

  • We found it best to cook these dry and frozen. So don’t wait for them to thaw, and don’t add them to the sauce first. 
  • Keep the frozen meatballs in one layer so they don’t touch each other or stack. All that hot air needs to reach every part of the meatballs to cook quickly.
  • You can add time if you test a meatball and it’s not heated through to your liking.
  • We used seasoned Italian meatballs, but you can use any frozen meatballs that are about 1.5 in diameter. 
  • For plant-based meatballs, you may need to reduce the heat to 400F. They are usually more tender and could break more easily, so don’t turn them.
  • If your air fryer doesn’t go as high as 425F, cook at 400F for 4 minutes, then turn and cook for 4 more minutes. You can always remove a meatball and cut it to test the center to ensure that they are heated through to your liking.

What to Serve With Frozen Meatballs in Air Fryer

  • Once your delicious meatballs come out of the air fryer, you can add them to a jar of pasta sauce and eat them as is. This makes a pretty great low-carb meal.
  • Or make Swedish meatballs—these also go great in a silky pot of light brown gravy.
  • Add a dusting (a little or a lot) of grated parmesan, a fistful of shredded Tillamook cheddar, or layers of sliced muenster. 
  • Eat them plain with some fresh parsley (see photos). The air fryer keeps them pretty juicy and tender, and these didn’t need much more since ours came already seasoned.
  • You can serve them as an appetizer with your favorite dipping sauce like raspberry chipotle or red pepper jam!
  • Slice and add to a flatbread or pizza, or even a homemade Italian wedding soup.
  • Serve them with marinara sauce and Parmesan cheese for a classic Italian appetizer.
This is meatballs on a plate.

The bottom line

Frozen meatballs in the air fryer are a great option for a quick weeknight dinner or speedy lunch. Add sauce and your favorite pasta, add to a sub roll, or enjoy on their own.

More Air Fryer Recipes

This is meatballs on a plate.

How To Cook Frozen Meatballs In The Air Fryer

Yield: 2 Servings
Prep Time: 1 minute
Cook Time: 6 minutes
Total Time: 7 minutes

It’s super easy and fast to cook frozen meatballs in the air fryer. Cook at 425F in your air fryer for about 6 minutes.


  • 6 to 8 frozen meatballs, depending on the size of your air fryer basket or tray


  1. Preheat the air fryer to 425F for about a minute.
  2. Place frozen meatballs in one layer of your air fryer basket, with a little space between them so they don’t crowd each other.
  3. Cook at 425F for 4 minutes.
  4. Turn meatballs with tongs and cook for 1 to 2 additional minutes.
  5. They should be sizzling and hot.
  6. Remove meatballs with tongs to a serving plate.
  7. Serve hot or add to your favorite sauce, pasta, or gravy and enjoy.
This is meatballs on a plate.
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