Recipe: Ham Balls

12 May

Last Sunday was Mother’s Day, in case you missed it. (If you missed it, stop reading, and call your mom NOW.) It’s a day to love on and appreciate those precious women in our lives who gave us life. We slather them with kisses and cover them with love- and they eat it up, of course. And why shouldn’t they? It’s the one day of the year when (hopefully) they’re not cooking for us, cleaning up after us, or worrying about us. They get to be the queen!

When I think of mothers, I think not only of my own, (who is awesome, btw), but also of my husband’s mom. I owe her a lot, you know. She raised quite the man, one who is honest, loving, caring, and hard-working. He is ever-supportive and never demoralizing. He’s strong and brave, and comfortable in his own skin. Where do you think that comes from? Certainly it’s not a random occurence. Nay, this man is the product of good parenting, especially good mothering. And for that, I’m thankful.

So this Mother’s Day, I asked Mary, (the mother-in-law), if I could feature one of her classic recipes on the blog. She agreed, and lovingly handed me the recipe to her famous ham balls- but with one condition: I had to cite her mother as the original author. Oh, mothers, we’d starve without them!

So here it is: the Guthrie family ham ball recipe- from my husband’s mother, but first from her mother.

Ham Balls


  • 1 ¼ lb ground beef
  • 1 ¼ lb ground ham
  • ½ lb ground pork
  • 1 ½ cups cracker crumbs
  • ¾ cup milk
  • ¾ cup tomato juice
  • 1 ½ tsp worchestershire
  • 3 eggs, slightly beaten
  • ½ tsp poultry seasoning
  • ¼ tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 potato, grated
  • 1 carrot, grated
  • 1 ½ tsp grated onion
  • Sauce
    • 1 can tomato soup
    • ¼ cup vinegar
    • 1 cup brown sugar
    • 1 tsp mustard


  1. Mix meat together in a bowl.
  2. In another bowl, mix remaining ingredients (excluding sauce).
  3. Add meat to breadcrumb mixture, form into oblong balls (approx 2 ½- 2 oz in size).
  4. Place in a 9×13 pan. (You’ll note that this recipe makes far too many balls to cook in one pan. Luckily, this recipe freezes beautifully.)
  5. Bake in the oven at 350 degrees (f) for 45 minutes, loosely covered with foil.
  6. While it cooks, mix up the sauce ingredients.
  7. Remove foil, pour sauce over ham balls and finish cooking uncovered for 20-30 minutes.
Do you have a favorite “mother-in-law” recipe? Share it in the comments- and make sure to cite the creator!
Download the .pdf of this recipe: Ham Balls

4 Responses to “Recipe: Ham Balls”

  1. PolaM May 12, 2011 at 10:37 am #

    Hi Shellina, I love reading your blog: recepies are so good and simple I am almost intimidated! I have something to show my appreciation on my blog!

    • chefshellina May 12, 2011 at 11:17 am #

      Don’t be intimidated! The whole blog is about finding your own groove in the kitchen and making excellent (perhaps even restaurant quality?) food at home- thereby saving money. We’re happy you’re here. 🙂

  2. Claudia May 12, 2011 at 11:02 am #

    Love your Food Photography and recepies 🙂
    I’m planning to watch Penny De Los Santos free online
    Food Photography this weekend, and I thought to share the information with you.
    I hope to be as good as you are!

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