Mozzarella Stuffed Meatballs with Tomato Cream Sauce

I always have a stash of meatballs in my freezer for quick dinners, but every now and again I’ll make these for something a little more special.
This is one of my hubby’s favorite meals, and on the top of my list as well.  I love that it’s so simple to make, but feels like a special dinner.
Especially if you serve it with fresh baguettes.
One warning though, if you don’t get these to the table and serve dinner promptly… well, there won’t be any for dinner. : )
Between my hubby and 5 year old, these can be polished off in a flash.

For the Meatballs:

3 T olive oil
1 cup finely chopped onion
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 slices firm bread, cut in small cubes
1/2 cup milk
1 lb ground beef
1 lb ground pork
1 egg
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
2 T Italian seasoning
8 oz mozzarella cheese, cut into 24 cubes

For the Sauce:
3 garlic cloves, crushed
28 oz can crushed tomatoes
2 tsp thyme
2 tsp oregano
1 tsp sugar
salt and pepper, to taste
1 cup milk or cream

To serve:
1 lb spaghetti, cooked al dente
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil

Heat 1 T olive oil in a saute pan over medium high heat.  Add onion and garlic, saute until softened, then put on a plate to cool.
Place the bread cubes in a bowl and pour the milk over.  Let soak.
Combine the beef, pork, egg, Parmesan, salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning in a large bowl.
Squeeze excess milk from bread and add to meat mixture along with cooled onions.
Use your hands to gently combine everything.  Divide mixture into 24 balls (I find it easiest to divide bowl contents in quarters, then each quarter into 6).

Wrap each meatball around a cube of mozzarella, incasing completely.
Place on a cookie sheet and repeat until done.
Heat the  remaining 2 T olive oil in a large skillet (I find a large electric skillet makes this go quite faster.)
Working in batches, sear the meatballs on all sides, don’t cook all the way through, just brown the outside.
Then return to the cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes or until cooked through.

While meatballs are baking, cook the noodles and make the sauce.
In same skillet used to sear meatballs, saute garlic.
Add crushed tomatoes, thyme, oregano, and sugar.
Let simmer for a few minutes, add salt and pepper to taste.
Stir in cream or milk, then add noodles and toss with sauce, then add meatballs and top with basil.

Recipe adapted from Tyler Florence

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  1. I love, love, love your recipes. I can not wait to try them out mlseyf. The only I question I had was about buying the familt pack of, turkey meat also want my family eating healthier as well. Thanks luv #TeamSOmaya1

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