Air Fryer Zoodles and Meatballs? Yes, it can be done. And yes, deliciously!
This all started on my ongoing quest to figure out more food I can make in the appliances I got for Christmas: oh-my-gosh Instant Pot and utterly-amazing Air Fryer. See, I love my gadgets and I’m kind of a lazy cook. Which is good news for you–anything I come up with is both easy and hard to mess up!
The air fryer is ridiculously convenient. I’ve employed it making meatballs repeatedly. Since I don’t cook my zoodles a whole lot anyway, I thought to myself, “Why not just dump the zoodles on top of the meatballs here and see what happens?”
I can tell you what happens, friends: dinner. Air Fryer Zoodles and Meatballs for dinner happens! And the whole thing went down in less than the time it takes to watch a Roseanne rerun.
And before anybody asks me, no, you don’t have to use the flaxseed meal. The food police ’round here don’t care.
I added the flax because: 1. It’s already in my freezer; 2. I like the extra fiber; and 3. It seems to absorb some of the fat and help bind the meatball together. At least, that’s what I think it does. I’m not JuliaChild’s long lost protege, y’all.
In many meatball recipes, people use breadcrumbs similarly to how I’m using flax here, sometimes soaked in milk. I understand it’s supposed to make sure the meatballs are moist, tender and still hold together. I may try adding a little cream to the flax next time and see if it warrants an update here.
But either way, these were SUPER easy and SUPER fast and SUPER tasty. A trifecta of dining delights, right there. (Want to save this one? Pin is here!)
- Mix hamburger, flaxseed meal, liquid smoke and seasoning. Form into meatballs and place in the Air Fryer Basket.
- Set Air Fryer to meat presetting (or 370F for 20 minutes) and let your fryer do it's magic! You'll want to check on your meatballs a little over the halfway point to roll them around a bit for even cooking.
- Put the spaghetti sauce in a small saucepan and warm or reduce as you like it, over low heat. I like to doctor store-bought up with roasted chilies, diced tomatoes, leftover fresh mushrooms, or just whatever I've got hanging out in the fridge that looks like a good match.
- With about 5 minutes left on your meatballs and after you've rolled them about the fryer basket, just pile your zoodles on top!
- Cook a couple of minutes, and then pop open the air fryer and flip the zoodles. I do this a couple of times. When the zoodles are warm, "al dente" texture and maybe have a hint of browning, I consider them done.
- Serve it up! The bitty bit of leftovers we had reheated fine the next day.
What do you make in your air fryer?