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SPAGHETTI AND MEATBALLS

Ingredients

  • FOR THE SAUCE:
  • 1/2 rack baby back ribs (cut into pieces)
  • 2 TBLS olive oil
  • 5 29oz. cans Hunts Tomato Sauce
  • 6 to 8 cloves garlic
  • 6 bay leaves
  • FOR THE MEATBALLS:
  • 1 lb. ground veal
  • 1 lb. ground pork
  • 1 lb. meatloaf mix
  • 1 1/2 lb. ground beef (80/20)
  • 1 1/2 C heavy whipping cream
  • 4 slices bread
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 TBLS fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 TBLS kosher salt
  • 2/3 C Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
  • Parmesan cheese and basil for garnish, optional
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Oh my goodness! I have kept this recipe for my homemade Spaghetti and Meatballs a secret for the longest time. Not really sure why. As I am adding recipes to my “That 70’s Food” blog, it occurred to me what would have happened if all of these recipes from the past were never shared. What a shame. So, here it is! My recipe for homemade sauce and the best meatballs you have ever tasted. It has not been in my family for generations. However, I am hopeful, that it be will be passed along for future generations to enjoy! Once you have the sauce made, there are so many way to use it. The sauce and meatballs freeze just perfectly.

This is a relatively easy recipe. It is just going to take you some time to prepare. Because of this, I make in big batches so that I can freeze and use for a quick weeknight dinner, or use the sauce in other recipes of mine. Use the sauce for my Baked Meatballs, Eggplant Napoleons, Lasagna Rollups, and even my Zucchini Rollatini!

Let’s talk sauce. I like a clean sauce. Over the course of the years, I have found that it is best to use pork ribs. In addition, I always use Hunt’s Tomato Sauce. Be careful and do NOT buy the no salt added. For some reason, it changes the taste completely! Follow these directions, and I swear this will become your new favorite, or at least I hope so!

a white platter of spaghetti with three meatballs

HOW TO PREPARE THE SAUCE FOR SPAGHETTI AND MEATBALLS

In a large pot, heat up the olive oil over medium heat. Season the pork ribs with kosher salt and pepper. Place in pot and allow to brown on all sides. The browned bits at the bottom will impart such great flavor to the sauce.

Pour in the tomato sauce. Stir and loosen up any browned bits on the bottom. Add in the garlic and bay leaves. Simmer on medium-low, stirring occasionally for about three to four hours. I typically judge when the sauce is finished if I can smash a garlic clove against the pot. Smash about half of the remaining cloves. When the sauce is finished, remove and discard the pork ribs (you basically cooked all of the flavor out of them), bay leaves and remaining garlic cloves.

HOW TO PREPARE THE MEATBALLS

While the sauce is simmering, prepare the meatballs. Take the meat out of the fridge about an hour prior to using. In a large bowl, add in the heavy whipping cream. Tear off tiny pieces of the bread (I use the entire piece) and place in cream. Combine. Allow to soak for a few minutes. Mix in the minced garlic, fresh parsley, and Parmesan cheese. Unlike other meatball recipes, you do NOT need to use an egg! For a quick tutorial, click here to check out my video on TikTok.

Add in the meat. Season generously with kosher salt. Combine all ingredients. Be sure NOT over mix! Over mixing will cause the meatballs to become too dense. We want a nice and tender meatball. One that kind of melts in your mouth.

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Form meatballs. Bake for about 12 to 15 minutes. I flip the meatballs with two spoons halfway through the baking process. This recipe will make about fifty generous-sized meatballs. Reserve baked meatballs in bowl until the sauce is finished. Once sauce is finished, place meatballs in sauce. As the meatballs are baking, prepare your favorite pasta. Check out two of my favorite pasta brands, DeCecco and Delallo. Do NOT forget to salt your water!

Drain pasta. Toss pasta with sauce and top with meatballs. Garnish the Spaghetti and Meatballs with freshly grated Parmesan cheese and chiffonades of fresh basil! I hope you love this recipe as much as I do. ENJOY!!!

LET’S GET SOCIAL!

I am more than just recipes. I love fashion and style too! Most importantly, I love my Family (my Hubby and my Fur Babies). My Husband (aka my “Kitchen Bitch”) means the world to me. He’s pretty damn cool too. Not only is he one of the nicest guys you will ever meet, he also has had a lengthy career in professional hockey. Not only winning two Stanley Cups with the Pittsburgh Penguins in the early ’90’s, but most recently winning the Calder Cup with the Charlotte Checkers, amongst many other accolades. If you live in Charlotte and play hockey, or have a family member who plays, be sure to contact him. He is known as one of the best skate sharpeners in the world!

Our life has changed dramatically in the past few years with the passing of our two goldendoodles, Vegas and Viva. We were lucky enough to have Vegas for five years (totally wish it was longer). Most recently, losing our Viva to a brain tumor in July of 2020. We welcomed our mini goldendoodle 7, almost seven years ago. We just added the amazing Hazel! Of course, I am always posting tons and tons of photos! Be sure to check out my recipe for Pet Bone Broth! This broth is super rich in nutrients and will provide your pet with a multitude of health benefits!

Be sure to follow me on social media! I’m always talking food, fashion, and family! I also love sharing some of my favorite Amazon Finds too. Click here to check out my Amazon page! FacebookInstagramTikTokTwitter and Pinterest!

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9 Comments

  1. […] for a long time. I decided a few months ago, that I should be sharing these recipes. Click here for the recipes, and to see how I make them. Basically, I just took my homemade meatballs and […]

  2. […] Definitely a few more steps than my usual recipes, but I can assure you, so worth it! I made my own sauce, but you can skip this step and use one of your own, or one of your favorite jarred sauces. I like […]

  3. […] restaurant, but I do know it’s one of my Hubby’s favorites. So, I had a container of my Homemade Meatballs and Sauce in the freezer, so I used that (see link for recipe). If you don’t wish to make your own, use […]

  4. Is the recipe correct to use 7 cans of tomatoes sauce? 29oz each?

    • Hello Laura…
      It should read 5 cans…just changed. Thanks for reminding me…I have been meaning to update!

  5. […] So, let’s talk meat. In my opinion, meatloaf is so much tastier using a combination of beef, pork and veal. Visit your local grocery store and grab a package of meatloaf mix. However, If for some reason they do not carry it, you can buy each in a one pound package and use the extra to make Meatballs. […]


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