Spaghetti and Meatballs (Video)

5 from 1 vote
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This Spaghetti and Meatball recipe is the definition of a weeknight family comfort meal. My recipe for super tender beef and pork meatballs and a home made tomato sauce is an easy, timeless recipe that you’ll be making again and again! Find all my tips and tricks to get moist, succulent meatballs and a quick and easy tomato sauce that’s packed with flavor on the table in under an hour!

Spaghetti and Meatballs on a white plate.

Watch the Spaghetti and Meatballs recipe video below!

Ingredients for Spaghetti and Meatballs

This delicious Spaghetti and Meatballs is one pan dinner that’s so easy to make! Here are all the ingredients you’ll need:

  • Meatballs
    • 1 lb Ground Beef 85/15
    • 1 lb Ground Pork
    • 1 cup unseasoned Breadcrumbs
    • 3/4 cup whole milk
    • 1 cup grated parmesan cheese
    • 3 cloves garlic finely minced
    • 6 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
    • 2 tsp kosher salt
    • 1 tsp black pepper
    • 2 tbsp fresh parsley
    • 2 tsp dried oregano
    • 1 large egg
  • Tomato Sauce
    • 1 yellow onion finely minced
    • 4 cloves garlic finely minced
    • 1 28 oz can tomatoes I highly recommend you use San Marzano tomatoes
    • 1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
    • 1 tsp sugar
    • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
    • 1/2 tsp dried thyme
    • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 pound of Spaghetti, cooked to al dente

Pro Tips for Spaghetti and Meatballs!

  • Hydrating the Breadcrumbs: Hydrating the breadcrumbs with a liquid like milk is KEY to juicy, moist meatballs! If you need to substitute the dairy, you can use chicken stock or beef stock instead.
  • San Marzano Tomatoes: Because there are not a lot of ingredients in the sauce, I highly recommend using a high quality tomato such San Marzano tomatoes – you will taste the difference!
  • Storage: You can make this sauce ahead of time and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Simply heat it up in the pan, cook your pasta to al dente and finish it in the sauce once the meatballs are heated through! Dinner done in 20 minutes!
  • Seasonings: I opt for dried oregano, dried thyme, and crushed red pepper flakes for my sauce, but feel free to add additional seasonings such as chopped fresh basil or fresh basil leaves for a bright, fragrant burst of flavor!
Meatballs simmering in tomato sauce in a pan.

Should I use fresh tomatoes or canned tomatoes for this recipe?

I always recommend using canned San Marzano tomatoes for this recipe. They are a certified product of the San Marzano region of Italy and you can truly taste the difference in the sauce. While they are a little more expensive (about $4 for a 28oz can), they are definitely worth it in my opinion, especially because this batch makes a lot of tomato sauce. Alternatively, you can use fresh tomatoes if they are in season, which is typically May through October.

A close up photo of a can of San Marzano Tomatoes.

Spaghetti and Meatballs: Recipe Instructions

1. Season and hydrate the breadcrumbs

Start by adding unseasoned breadcrumbs in bowl with salt, pepper, grated parmesan, garlic, parsley, oregano. Stir to combine then add milk and mix through with your hands. Hydrating the breadcrumbs are a key component to moist, delicious meatballs. Do not skip this step!

2. Mix and form the meatballs

To the seasoned and hydrated breadcrumbs, add the ground beef and ground pork, egg, and olive oil and mix until thoroughly combined. Take 4 ounces of the meat mixture and roll them into balls with your hands. Lay them on a tray lined with parchment paper and freeze them for 15 minutes to allow the meatballs to firm up and hold their shape. Freezing for a few minutes will help them keep their shape when frying in olive oil!

Hands rolling the meat mixture into meatballs.

3. Fry the meatballs

In a non stick pan over medium high heat, add 4 tbsp of olive oil and sear meatballs for 3-4 minutes until golden brown on all sides. Remove from pan to a plate, leaving the remaining fat and olive oil in the pan.

Meatballs frying in olive oil in a pan.

4. Make the tomato sauce

In the same oil, sauté onion and garlic over medium heat until onions are translucent. Add the San Marzano tomatoes. Crush until desired consistency then add crushed red pepper, sugar, dried oregano, dried thyme, and season with salt and pepper. Simmer for 15 minutes over medium heat.

5. Simmer the meatballs

Add the meatballs to the tomato sauce. Cover and let the meatballs simmer in the sauce for another 30 minutes until cooked through and tender. Cook the pasta to al dente, finish in the sauce and enjoy!

Meatballs simmering in tomato sauce in a pan.

If you liked this recipe, be sure to find some of my other popular pasta recipes on the blog:

If you make this recipe, please tag me on social media! I love seeing all your recreations on InstagramFacebook, and TikTok! Tag me and hashtag them #cjeatsrecipes

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5 from 1 vote

Spaghetti and Meatballs (Video)

Servings: 4
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 45 minutes
Spaghetti and Meatballs on a white plate.
This Spaghetti and Meatball recipe will be your new go to weeknight family dinner! This is the best recipe for super tender beef and pork meatballs and a home made tomato marinara sauce is an easy, timeless recipe that you'll be making again and again.

Ingredients 

Meatballs

  • 1 lb Ground Beef, 85/15
  • 1 lb Ground Pork
  • 1 cup unseasoned Breadcrumbs
  • 3/4 cup whole milk
  • 1 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 6 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 2 tbsp Fresh Parsley
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 large egg

Tomato Sauce

  • 1 yellow onion, finely minced
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1 28 oz can tomatoes, I highly recommend you use San Marzano tomatoes
  • 1 tsp crushed red pepper
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 lb spaghetti, cooked to al dente

Instructions 

  • Add unseasoned breadcrumbs to a bowl. Season with salt, pepper, grated parmesan, garlic, parsley, oregano. Stir to combine then add milk and mix through with your hands until the breadcrumbs are moist and softened.
  • Add the ground beef and ground pork, egg, and olive oil and mix until thoroughly combined. Take 4 ounces of the meat mixture and roll them into balls with your hands. Lay them on a tray lined with parchment paper and freeze them for 15 minutes to allow the meatballs to firm up and hold their shape.
  • In a non stick pan over medium high heat, add 4 tbsp of olive oil and sear meatballs for 3-4 minutes until golden brown on all sides. Remove from pan to a plate.
  • In the same oil, sauté onion and garlic over medium heat until onions are translucent. Add the San Marzano tomatoes. Crush until desired consistency then add crushed red pepper, sugar, dried oregano, dried thyme, and season with salt and pepper. Simmer for 15 minutes over medium heat.
  • Add the meatballs to the tomato sauce. Cover and let the meatballs simmer in the sauce for another 30 minutes until cooked through and tender. Cook the pasta to al dente, finish in the sauce and enjoy!

Notes

  • Hydrating the Breadcrumbs: Hydrating the breadcrumbs with a liquid like milk is KEY to juicy, moist meatballs! If you need to substitute the dairy, you can use chicken stock or beef stock instead.
  • San Marzano Tomatoes: Because there are not a lot of ingredients in the sauce, I highly recommend using a high quality tomato such San Marzano tomatoes – you will taste the difference!
  • Storage: You can make this sauce ahead of time and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Simply heat it up in the pan, cook your pasta to al dente and finish it in the sauce once the meatballs are heated through! Dinner done in 20 minutes!
  • Seasonings: I opt for dried oregano, dried thyme, and crushed red pepper flakes for my sauce, but feel free to add additional seasonings such as chopped fresh basil or fresh basil leaves for a bright, fragrant burst of flavor!

Nutrition

Calories: 621kcalCarbohydrates: 11gProtein: 48gFat: 76gSaturated Fat: 25gPolyunsaturated Fat: 5gMonounsaturated Fat: 38gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 189mgSodium: 1769mgPotassium: 836mgFiber: 1gSugar: 4gVitamin A: 624IUVitamin C: 7mgCalcium: 339mgIron: 4mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American, Italian
Tried this recipe?Mention @cj.eats_ or tag #cjeatsrecipes!

About CJ

I’m a third generation Chinese-American home cook who has always loved cooking & eating! Welcome to my food blog, where you can find trusted, tested, easy & approachable recipes for the everyday home cook that taste delicious! I am so glad you're here!

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