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Family Favorite – Homemade Spaghetti and Meatballs (by PW)

on June 21, 2011

This dish has quickly became a family favorite.  Now, everyone in the family is always requesting this dish.  Everything is made from fresh ingredients and herbs, so the process of preparing the dish could take a little while.  However, the end result is soooooo worth it!  I make this about once a month, and to be honest, that probably isnt nearly enough for my crew. 

If you have read any posts from my blog, you will know I have tried many Pioneer Woman’s recipes.  I love so many of her recipes, but this one is my family’s favorite of hers.  My father-in-law says this is better than Johnny Carino’s.  I think they just tell me these things to keep me cooking. 



  • 1 pound Lean Ground Beef
  • 1 pound Ground Pork
  • 3 cloves Garlic, Minced
  • ¾ cups Fine Italian Bread Crumbs
  • 2 whole Eggs
  • ¾ cups Freshly Grated Parmesan
  • ¼ cups Flat-leaf Parsley, Chopped
  • ¼ teaspoons Salt
  • Freshly Ground Black Pepper
  • Splash Of Milk
  • ½ cups Olive Oil


  • 1 whole Yellow Onion, Diced
  • 4-5 cloves Garlic, Minced or Pressed
  • 1 whole (28-ounce) Can Whole Tomatoes
  • 1 whole 28 Ounce Can Crushed Tomatoes
  • ½ cups White wine (optional)
  • ¼ teaspoons Salt
  • 1 teaspoon Sugar
  • 1 teaspoon (or less) Crushed Red Pepper
  • Freshly Ground Black Pepper
  • ¼ cups Flat-leaf Parsley, Minced
  • 8 whole Fresh Basil Leaves, Chiffonade (optional)
  • 2 pounds Spaghetti, Cooked To Al Dente


 Start by making the meatballs.  In a large bowl, combine the meat, garlic, bread crumbs, eggs, pepper, salt, chopped parsley, and the splash of milk.  With your hands, fold the ingredients together until they are mixed well.  Next, roll meat mixture into 2-inch (or less) balls and place on a plate that you can later throw in the freezer.  Once you have rolled all the meatballs, put them in the freezer for 5 minutes or so to firm up.  This will help with keeping the meatballs together when browning.


In a large pot, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat.  When the oil is hot and ready, gently add meatballs to the oil, rotating to brown all sides.  On a separate plate or tray, place a couple of sheets of paper towels.  Remove the meatballs when finished cooking and drain on a paper towel.  Set aside.

In the same pot, add the onions and garlic and cook for a few minutes, until the onions become translucent.  (This is my favorite step because it just ignites the kitchen with wonderful aromas.) Next, add the white wine.  Stir well releasing the drippings and bits from the bottom of the skillet.  Pour in the crushed and whole tomatoes.  Add salt, pepper, sugar, crushed red pepper and chopped parsley. Stir to combine and cook over medium heat for 20 minutes. 

Add meatballs back to the pot.  With tongs, gently squeeze the whole tomatoes. Reduce heat to simmer and cook for 30 minutes, stirring a couple of times. 

Before serving, stir in fresh basil.  Don’t skip the basil, it takes the dish to a whole new level of deliciousness.   

Note: When choosing basil at the grocery, I squeeze the container the herb is in a couple of times under my nose.  If the basil is strong, I know it will make the sauce delicious. 

Serve over cooked spaghetti, and be sure to sprinkle freshly-grated Parmesan cheese right on top! 

Source: Pioneer Woman


One response to “Family Favorite – Homemade Spaghetti and Meatballs (by PW)

  1. […] meal? Homemade Spaghetti and Meatball recipe by Pioneer Woman!! Advertisement GA_googleAddAttr("AdOpt", "1"); […]

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