Classic Spaghetti & Meatballs

Classic Spaghetti & Meatballs….I couldn’t actually call myself a food blogger if I didn’t have this recipe on my blog, right?  After trying many recipes and variations over the years, I have landed on this as the best combination of a few of my favorites.  Honestly, Spaghetti & Meatballs is kind of a classic that you don’t really want to mess with.

There are certain components that just need to be included to make this dish a belly-patting success.  It doesn’t need to be de-constructed, it doesn’t need to be unrecognizable, it just needs to be itself.  Why make things more difficult than they need to be?  Easy enough to make on a weeknight and elevated enough to serve for company over the weekend.

I love the combination of meats for the meatballs, the slight crunch from pan frying them and then the amazing flavors of finishing them in the sauce.  If you want a lighter version, you can also bake them on a lined baking sheet at 400F for about 20 minutes.  This recipe makes about two-dozen meatballs.  Unless you’re serving a large group, you can use what you need the night of and freeze the rest for a quick weeknight reheat meal.  To me, the homemade marinara sauce makes all the difference in elevating this dish.  It is really so simple to make and once you make it and taste the difference, it’s hard to go back to store bought.  Although, of course you could, in a pinch.  I hope you enjoy this Classic Spaghetti & Meatballs!  Grab a glass of Sangiovese, Barbera or Nebbiolo….Salute!

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Classic Spaghetti & Meatballs
Classic Spaghetti & Meatballs....I couldn't actually call myself a food blogger if I didn't have this recipe on my blog, right? After trying many recipes and variations over the years, I have landed on this as the best combination of a few of my favorites. Honestly, Spaghetti & Meatballs is kind of a classic that you don't really mess with.
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Italian
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Servings
people
Ingredients
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Italian
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Servings
people
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. In a large dutch oven, make the sauce. Add EVOO and the diced onion, saute until translucent, about 10 minutes on medium low. Then add 1/2 of the minced garlic and sauté another minute or so. Next add the red wine, the 28 oz. can of whole peeled tomatoes and their juices. Squeeze them very carefully as you add them, it is a very messy job! Then I add a can of 28 oz. crushed tomatoes to it and another 28 oz. can of tomato puree. Add in the 2 Tablespoons of parsley, 2 Tablespoons of the basil, salt, pepper, pinch of red pepper flakes and 1 teaspoon sugar. Simmer over low heat for at least an hour, but flavor will develop the longer you simmer. I like to simmer sauce for at least 2 hours.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the three meats, egg, parmesan, panko bread crumbs, 2 Tbs. fresh chopped parsley, 1 clove minced garlic, salt and pepper. Combine with your hands until everything is incorporated. Shape each meatball into the size of a golf ball and place on a baking sheet.
  3. Heat a large skillet over medium high heat and add enough EVOO to cover the bottom of the skillet with about 1/2" of oil. You want the meatballs to brown, but not to burn. Working in batches, fry meatballs, turning until browned on all sides. Place finished ones directly into the sauce to finish cooking for 20 minutes or so, rotating halfway through to make sure they cook through completely.
  4. Start a large pot of salted water and bring to a boil for the pasta.
  5. Cook the pasta according to package directions, or 1-2 minutes less. Serve with sauce, meatballs, grated parmesan and fresh basil!
Recipe Notes

Another option to lighten up the dish is to use Gluten Free pasta.  We love the Barilla Gluten Free pasta and most time, no one can tell the difference!

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