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Italian meatballs with tomato sauce

Pasta and meatballs is one of the Italian dishes most loved in the North American East coast. Though northern Italians like meatballs very much, probably not as much as North Americans do. To serve spaghetti with meatballs, cook the spaghetti as the package instructions say. Arrange them on a hot platter. Pour the tomato and meatball sauce over them.


3⁄4 lb veal (ground)
3⁄4 lb pork (ground)
1 clv garlic (minced)
1 T parsley (fresh leaves, chopped)
1⁄4 c bread crumbs
1 egg
1⁄2 t oregano (dried, or 1 Tbs fresh chopped leaves)
1 t sugar
6 T olive oil (to brown the meatballs)


In a large bowl, thoroughly mix all the ingredients in the list up to the oregano. Form into balls the size you want, about 1" (2.5 cm) diameter works best.

Heat the oil in a pan and sauté the meatballs in the olive oil 3-4 minutes, rolling over so they brown evenly.

Add the tomato sauce and sugar, cover, and simmer for 20 minutes.

Serve warm

Total time
45 minutes
Cooking time
Preparation time
6 servings


Veal is a very lean meat with a very mild flavor, adding some pork makes the meatballs more tender and flavorful. However, you can omit pork meat altogether and use only veal; or you could make only pork meatballs. Other variations include substituting meat with the same amount of the same weight of beef, turkey, chicken or lamb.

You can make the meatballs in a casserole dish, in the oven.


Italian cuisine

Italians moved to the United States in large numbers around the beginning of the 20th century, taking their food and recipes with them. North Americans took very quickly to eating Italian dishes and cooking Italian. They adapted many of the recipes to their ingredients and their tastes.

moderate, comfort food
meat, main course
Italian food recipes