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Meatballs in Spaghetti Sauce

These meatballs are cooked in the slightly simmering sauce. . they stay juicy and plump.

Serves 6

  • 1 cup day old bread cubes
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium red onion
  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 pound ground pork
  • 2 hot Italian sausage links. . .casings removed
  • 3 tablespoons dried oregano
  • 1 cup grated Parmigiana Cheese
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/3 cup freshly chopped parsley
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt
Sauce Ingredients
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup of dry red wine
  • 2 - 28 ounce or 794 ml. diced tomatoes
  • 1 15 ounce jar tomato sauce with seasonings
  • 1 teaspoon salt ( do this to taste)
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 tablespoons fresh basil chopped
Instructions for Meatballs
  1. Place the bread and milk in a small bowl and let it soak.
  2. Heat a heavy large dutch oven over medium heat. . .and then add the olive oil.
  3. Add the onion and stir until golden .. .remove from heat and set aside.
  4. In a large bowl, combine the beef, pork, and sausage meat. . .combine with your hands.
  5. Add the seasonings, cheese and bread and eggs and combine.
  6. Add the cooled onion and salt and pepper. . .and combine.
  7. Set aside.
Instructions for the sauce
  1. In the pot that you cooked the onion, add the olive oil and heat over medium heat.
  2. Add the onion and the garlic and stir a few minutes until wilted.
  3. Add the tomato paste, the tomatoes and the tomato sauce and the wine.
  4. Add the remaining sauce seasonings. . .the pepper flakes, the parsley and the basil and sugar and then the salt and pepper to taste. . .let it simmer a while first.
Adding the meatballs
  1. Using a large ice cream scoop, scoop up a portion of meat. .and with your hands shape into a ball. . .add to the sauce and repeat with the remainder of the meat. You can use your hands if you don't have a scoop.
  2. Keep the sauce at a very low simmer. . .this will keep the fat from separating out of the meatballs.
  3. Simmer for at least 1 1/2 hours so that the flavour of the meatballs and flavour the sauce. I couldn't believe how much different the sauce tasted after several hours.


  1. I love to make Italian food, I'll have to give this recipe a try.


  2. yummm, those meatballs sound like they'd be super tasty!

  3. Wow! This sounds wonderful! Thanks!

  4. Meatballs in spaghetti sauce..sounds good! It's good to have another version of it.

  5. Thanks for serving this wonderful sauce to us on our last visit...the meatballs turn out perfect baked in the sauce. Glad you shared the recipe here. Kathy

  6. This sounds divine! I just polished off a brownie for breakfast and now I'm fully ready for spaghetti! Thanks for sharing.

  7. My Italian grandma and my Italian sister-in-law always make meatballs in this fashion & taught me the same thing: don't brown them first! They are much better tasting, moister & delicious this way! Yum. Now I'm hungry for this...

  8. It took me an incredibly long time to actually touch raw hamburger...I don't know why lol. Even now, for the most part, I just make "crumble" hamburger (I don't know what else to call it haha). I may just have to try these meatballs & spaghetti sauce sometime, since I eat spaghetti regularly (although it's generally without sauce - just margarine, a bit of salt & dill). Maybe on a day that I don't work & am cleaning the apartment :).

  9. These sound very "gourmet."
    Our favorite meatballs are a recipe you gave me ... what, 20 years ago? Should I try a new recipe?

  10. This sounds delicious, I've never put spicey Italian sausage in my spaghetti but I think I'll try it. Spaghetti is one of our favorite dinners.

  11. thos one was delicious - thatnk you for sharing

  12. One of my favorite meals! My hubby makes this...he'll want to look at the recipe!

  13. I made this recipe tonight, altered it slightly to what I had in my was excellent!!! I would definitely recommend it!!

  14. I haven't used pork before for meatballs, but I might give that a try. Thanks!

  15. I used the sauce recipe to serve over fresh canelloni that I bought a Costco. I loved it! The sauce tasted so fresh. I did not have red wine, so I substituted chicken broth. I used a full tsp. of red pepper flakes, so it was nice and spicy. Just the way I like it. Now, what can I do with a family that is not crazy about tomato based things?


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