Meatballs Cyprus Dish

Cyprus Meat Balls Dish
Simple Ingredients with Aromatic Herbs

In Cyprus, meatballs, known as “keftedes,” stand out as a beloved traditional dish, cherished for their rich flavours and versatility. These Cypriot meatballs offer a delightful taste of the island’s culinary heritage, combining simple ingredients with aromatic herbs and spices to create a delicious and comforting meal.

Preparing the Meatballs

To prepare keftedes, one typically uses a mixture of ground beef and pork, ensuring a balance of flavours and textures. The meat is combined with finely chopped onions, fresh parsley, and breadcrumbs, which help bind the mixture and add a subtle crunch. Eggs also contribute to the binding process, ensuring the meatballs hold their shape during cooking.

A defining characteristic of Cypriot keftedes is the addition of grated potatoes. This ingredient sets them apart from other meatball recipes, lending a unique texture and moisture to the meatballs. Garlic, mint, and dried oregano are essential seasonings, infusing the meat with a fragrant and savoury taste. Salt and pepper are added to enhance the overall flavour profile.

Easy Greek Meatballs
Before Frying the Meatballs

Once the ingredients are thoroughly mixed, the meat mixture is shaped into small balls, usually about the size of a walnut. These meatballs are then lightly coated in flour, which helps achieve a crispy exterior when fried.

In a large skillet, a generous amount of olive oil is heated over medium-high heat. The meatballs are then fried until golden brown and cooked through, usually taking about 10-15 minutes. The result is a batch of perfectly cooked keftedes, crispy on the outside and tender on the inside.

Served in Various Ways

Keftedes are incredibly versatile and can be served in various ways. Traditionally, they accompany dishes like tzatziki, a refreshing yogurt-based dip, or alongside a simple salad of tomatoes, cucumbers, and olives. They also pair well with pita bread or rice, making them a hearty and satisfying meal.

Cypriot keftedes embody the essence of Cypriot cuisine—simple yet flavourful, with an emphasis on fresh ingredients and aromatic herbs. This dish not only offers a delicious culinary experience but also a taste of the island’s rich 

culinary tradition, passed down through generations and enjoyed by locals and visitors alike.


1 pound ground meat (pork, beef, veal, chicken, turkey or a combination)
½ cup bread crumbs
1 egg
1 teaspoon salt, more as needed
1 Medium onion chopped
3 gloves of Minced garlic
1 Tbls Oregano
1 Medium potato grated
Black pepper and/or ground cumin, to taste
Olive oil, for frying (optional)
Chopped parsley, basil or cilantro

  1. In a big bawl combine ALL ingredients. Add the ground beef, ground pork, garlic, eggs, fresh herbs, to the (same) mixing bowl. Sprinkle the oregano, salt, black pepper evenly on top. Use your hands to mix the ingredients until evenly combined, being careful not to over-mix the ingredients.
  2. Chill (optional step). To make the meatballs easier to form, I recommend covering and chilling the mixture in the refrigerator for 1 hour. But if you’re pressed for time, you can skip this step.
  3. Prep oven and baking sheet. Heat the oven to 425°F and line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  4. Form the meatballs. Using a medium cookie scoop or a spoon, scoop and roll the mixture into 2-tablespoon balls and place them on the prepared baking sheet. (I recommend greasing your hands with a bit of olive oil to prevent the mixture from sticking.)
  5. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until an instant-read thermometer measures the internal temperature of the meatballs to be 160°F. Remove pan and transfer to a wire cooling rack.
  6. Serve meatballs immediately and enjoy!

For extra delicious taste you can also finish cooking the meatballs in a spicy tomato salsa.

Place the meatballs in an oven roasting dish prepare you tomato salsa and pour it over the meatballs. Place them in a preheated oven for about 15 to 20 minutes and its ready to serve.

Recommended Products

Recommended Wine for Meatballs

Mavro (Local Cypriot Wine)

Mavro, a traditional Cypriot grape variety, holds a significant place in Cyprus’s winemaking history. This indigenous grape, whose name means “black” in Greek, produces a versatile and approachable red wine that reflects the island’s unique terroir and winemaking heritage. Known for its light to medium body, soft tannins, and fruity

character, Mavro wine serves as an excellent introduction to Cypriot viticulture. Mavro’s versatility extends to its food pairing potential. It pairs wonderfully with a variety of Cypriot dishes, enhancing the flavours of the local cuisine:

Cypriot Meatballs (Keftedes): The light tannins and fruity profile of Mavro complement the savoury and herbal flavours of the meatballs without overwhelming them.

The light tannins and fruity profile of Mavro complement the savoury meatballs without overpowering their delicate flavours.

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