How to Cook Meatballs in Sauce Quickly and Easily

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Christina Flores

· 2 min read

Healthy Beef and Pork Meatballs with Tomato Sauce

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 45 minutes

Additional Time: 10 minutes (resting)

Total Time: 70 minutes

Servings: 4-6


  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 lb ground pork
  • 1 cup breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 (28 oz) cans crushed tomatoes
  • 1 (6 oz) can tomato paste
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
  • Fresh basil leaves for garnish (optional)

Steps to Cook:

  1. In a large bowl, combine the ground beef, ground pork, breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, eggs, garlic, oregano, basil, salt, and black pepper. Mix well until all the ingredients are evenly distributed.
  2. Roll the mixture into 1-inch meatballs, making about 24-30 meatballs.
  3. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the meatballs and cook, turning occasionally, until browned on all sides, about 5-7 minutes.
  4. Remove the meatballs from the skillet and set aside.
  5. In the same skillet, add the diced onion and sauté until translucent, about 3-5 minutes.
  6. Add the crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, water, bay leaves, sugar, and red pepper flakes (if using). Stir to combine.
  7. Carefully add the browned meatballs to the sauce, making sure they are submerged.
  8. Bring the sauce to a simmer, then reduce the heat to low, cover the skillet, and let the meatballs cook in the sauce for 30-35 minutes, or until the meatballs are cooked through and the sauce has thickened.
  9. Remove the bay leaves and let the meatballs rest for 10 minutes before serving.
  10. Serve the meatballs and sauce over cooked pasta, with a garnish of fresh basil leaves if desired.

Cook’s Note:

  • For a richer, more flavorful sauce, you can add a splash of red wine or a teaspoon of Worcestershire sauce to the sauce.
  • If you prefer a smoother sauce, you can use an immersion blender to puree the sauce after the meatballs have finished cooking.
  • Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months.

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About Christina Flores

Hi, I am Christina Flores, author of I'm passionate about creating delicious and nutritious recipes to help people lead healthier lives. Join me on this culinary journey as we explore the world of healthy eating together!