Perfect Meatballs

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Perfect juicy meatballs tossed in a richly-flavored tomato sauce with bacon, this is one of our favorite Sunday night family dinners!😍

Made with a delicious combination of ground beef and pork, Parmesan cheese, ricotta, and a tempting blend of herbs, spices, and seasonings for intense flavor in every bite.

Then, simmer on the stove for about an hour in a delicious tomato sauce favored with bacon and blended with herbs and seasoning, making the house smell delicious!🤤 We prefer linguine in this recipe, but it’s good with spaghetti, fettuccine, or any pasta!

Yield: 7  servings   |   Total Time: 60 minutes

Perfect Meatballs

Ingredients

For the Meatballs:

  • 1 pound ground beef 80/20
  • 1 pound ground pork or sweet sausage links, casing removed
  • 1 cup fresh white bread crumbs (about 4 slices, crust removed)
  • 1/4 cup Panko Italian seasoned dry bread crumbs 
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh Italian parsley 
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan, Parmigiano-Reggiano, or Romano cheese
  • 1/4 cup full-fat ricotta cheese 
  • 3 cloves garlic, grated
  • 1/2 small sweet onion, grated 
  • 1 tablespoon Knorr Beef flavored bouillon or 2 teaspoons Kosher Salt 
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes 
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg 
  • 1 teaspoon fresh or dry oregano
  • 2 large egg, beaten 
  • 3/4 cup whole  milk, dry red wine, such as Malbec or warm water

For the Sauce

  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil,
  • 6 slices of bacon, chopped 
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 7 cloves garlic, crushed or chopped
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 2 Poblanos Pepper or red bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 8 fresh Tomatoes, diced
  • 1/2 cup red wine, such as Malbec 
  • 1 (28-ounce) can of crushed tomatoes or diced tomatoes
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste 
  • 1/4  cup Italian parsley, chopped 
  • 1/4 tablespoons freshly chopped basil leaves
  • 3 teaspoons oregano
  • 1 tablespoon Knorr beef flavor bouillon, to taste 
  • kosher salt, to taste
  • 1 cup of water
  • 1 tablespoon sugar

For the Pasta:

  • 1 1/2 pounds linguine, cooked according to package directions
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt, to taste ( to salt the pasta water)
  • 8 Tablespoons butter
  • 4 to 6 quartz water

To Serve:

  • Grated cheese, such as Parmigiano-Reggiano or Romano.
  • Crusty bread or garlic bread.

Instructions

For the Meatballs:

Preheat the oven to 425 °F and set an oven rack in the middle position. Lined a 13 x 18 sheet pan with aluminum foil, set a rack, and lightly spray cooking oil;  set aside.

Place both types of meat, bread crumbs, parsley, grated onion, ricotta, Parmesan, salt, pepper, nutmeg, egg, oregano, and 3/4 cup warm water in a bowl. Combine very lightly with a fork. At this point, you can shape and bake your meatballs or cover and refrigerate for a least 1 and up to 8 hours. (The longer you let the mixture sit, the more flavor will develop). 

Using your hands, lightly form the mixture into 2-inch meatballs. (You will have about 28 meatballs). Arrange the meatballs on the prepared sheet pan. The mixture will be a bit sticky; lightly oil your hands every so often while rolling the meatballs if necessary. Bake the meatballs for 20 to 25 minutes until browned and almost cooked through.

Perfect Meatballs

For the sauce:

Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a pot over medium-high heat. Add the bacon and cook until browned. Transfer the bacon to a plate and pour the fat from the pot.

Heat 3 tablespoons of olive oil in the same pan over medium heat. Add the onion, poblano, crushed tomato, and fresh tomatoes and cook until softened, 10  to 15 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Finally, add the tomato paste and cook, stirring, for 2 more minutes. 

Add the wine and cook on high heat, scraping up all the brown bits in the pan until almost all the liquid evaporates about 3 minutes. Next, add the water, sugar, beef flavor bouillon, and pepper. Stir, cover, and simmer on the lowest heat for about 30 minutes.

Return the meatballs bacon, stir in the parsley to the sauce, and simmer for another 30 minutes until the flavors come together and the sauce is thickened. Stir in the basil, taste, and adjust season with kosher salt if needed.

Perfect Meatballs

For the pasta:

Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Add the pasta and cook al dente, about 7 minutes, stirring occasionally. For more tender pasta, boil an additional minute. Drain pasta in a colander—return pot to low heat. Add the butter and let it melt; add the cooked pasta and toss until completely coated with the butter. Stir in some warm tomato sauce and toss again.

Perfect Meatballs

To serve:

Transfer the sauced pasta to a platter and top with meatballs (using a slotted spoon). Ladle the remaining tomato sauce over the spaghetti and meatballs. Top with grated Parmesan cheese. Garnish with chopped parsley, if desired. Serve with bread or garlic bread (and some good Rose or Red Wine😉 ). Enjoy!

Looking for More Great Beef Recipes:


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                                                       Meatballs

Perfect Meatballs

Perfect Meatballs

Camila Benitez
Perfect juicy meatballs tossed in a richly-flavored tomato sauce with bacon, this is one of our favorite Sunday night family dinners!😍
No ratings yet
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 1 hr
Total Time 1 hr 10 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine American, Italian
Servings 10 people
Calories 300 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 pound ground beef 80/20
  • 1 pound ground pork or sweet sausage links , casing removed
  • 1 cup fresh white bread crumbs (about 4 slices, crust removed)
  • 1/4 cup Panko Italian seasoned dry bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh Italian parsley
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan , Parmigiano-Reggiano, or Romano cheese
  • 1/4 cup full-fat ricotta cheese
  • 3 cloves garlic , grated
  • 1/2 small sweet onion , grated
  • 1 tablespoon Knorr Beef flavored bouillon or 2 teaspoons Kosher Salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper , to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon fresh or dry oregano
  • 2 large egg , beaten
  • 3/4 cup whole milk , dry red wine, such as Malbec or warm water

For the Sauce

  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil ,
  • 6 slices of bacon , chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 7 cloves garlic , crushed or chopped
  • 1 large onion , finely chopped
  • 2 Poblanos Pepper or red bell pepper , finely chopped
  • 8 fresh Tomatoes , diced
  • 1/2 cup red wine , such as Malbec
  • 1 (28-ounce) can of crushed tomatoes or diced tomatoes
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup Italian parsley , chopped
  • 1/4 tablespoons freshly chopped basil leaves
  • 3 teaspoons oregano
  • 1 tablespoon Knorr beef flavor bouillon , to taste
  • kosher salt , to taste
  • 1 cup of water
  • 1 tablespoon sugar

For the Pasta:

  • 1 1/2 pounds linguine , cooked according to package directions
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt , to taste ( to salt the pasta water)
  • 8 Tablespoons butter
  • 4 to 6 quartz water

To Serve:

  • Grated cheese , such as Parmigiano-Reggiano or Romano.
  • Crusty bread or garlic bread.

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 425 °F and set an oven rack in the middle position. Lined a 13 x 18 sheet pan with aluminum foil, set a rack, and lightly spray cooking oil;  set aside.
  • Place both types of meat, bread crumbs, parsley, grated onion, ricotta, Parmesan, salt, pepper, nutmeg, egg, oregano, and 3/4 cup warm water in a bowl. Combine very lightly with a fork. At this point, you can shape and bake your meatballs or cover and refrigerate for a least 1 and up to 8 hours. (The longer you let the mixture sit, the more flavor will develop).
  • Using your hands, lightly form the mixture into 2-inch meatballs. (You will have about 28 meatballs). Arrange the meatballs on the prepared sheet pan. The mixture will be a bit sticky; lightly oil your hands every so often while rolling the meatballs if necessary. Bake the meatballs for 20 to 25 minutes until browned and almost cooked through.

For the sauce:

  • Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a pot over medium-high heat. Add the bacon and cook until browned. Transfer the bacon to a plate and pour the fat from the pot.
  • Heat 3 tablespoons of olive oil in the same pan over medium heat. Add the onion, poblano, crushed tomato, and fresh tomatoes and cook until softened, 10  to 15 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Finally, add the tomato paste and cook, stirring, for 2 more minutes.
  • Add the wine and cook on high heat, scraping up all the brown bits in the pan until almost all the liquid evaporates about 3 minutes. Next, add the water, sugar, beef flavor bouillon, and pepper. Stir, cover, and simmer on the lowest heat for about 30 minutes.
  • Return the meatballs bacon, stir in the parsley to the sauce, and simmer for another 30 minutes until the flavors come together and the sauce is thickened. Stir in the basil, taste, and adjust season with kosher salt if needed.

For the pasta:

  • Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Add the pasta and cook al dente, about 7 minutes, stirring occasionally. For more tender pasta, boil an additional minute. Drain pasta in a colander—return pot to low heat. Add the butter and let it melt; add the cooked pasta and toss until completely coated with the butter. Stir in some warm tomato sauce and toss again.
  • To serve:
  • Transfer the sauced pasta to a platter and top with meatballs (using a slotted spoon). Ladle the remaining tomato sauce over the spaghetti and meatballs. Top with grated Parmesan cheese. Garnish with chopped parsley, if desired. Serve with bread or garlic bread (and some good Rose or Red Wine😉 ). Enjoy!

Nutrition

Calories: 300kcal
Keyword Meatballs
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