I mentioned this before when I originally published my meatball recipe but I really, really don’t like the supermarket frozen meatballs. I hate the corky texture they have and they’re just so artificial tasting.
But they’re convenient. And it’s easy to be lured in to buying them.
So, here’s what I do! I make batches of my homemade meatballs, cook them up, plop them in a big o’ gallon-sized zip-top bag and throw them in the freezer. I can quickly make Swedish Meatballs, Crock Pot Meatball Subs, Spaghetti & Meatballs or this beauty any time I want.
My new favorite meatball meal is this one where the meatballs are baked in tangy marinara and topped with gobs of buttery, gooey mozzarella. I typically serve this with some sort of hearty green vegetable like roasted brussels sprouts or fried zucchini (instead of pasta) and some good crusty bread to soak up all that cheese and sauce.
Baked Meatballs with Mozzarella
20-24 Italian meatballs, cooked (recipe below)
1 24-oz. jar marinara sauce
8 ounces of mozzarella, shredded
Spoon half of the marinara sauce into a large oven-proof frying pan or 13x9 baking dish. Arrange meatballs in pan then cover with remaining sauce. Cook, uncovered, for 10 minutes at 375 degrees or until sauce is heated through. Remove pan from oven and top meatballs with mozzarella. Return to oven and cook for an additional 10 minutes or until cheese is bubbly and starting to brown.
Serve with pasta or vegetables such as fried zucchini or roasted brussels sprouts (I love to serve hearty green veggies with marinara sauce – you totally don’t miss the pasta!).
1 onion, grated
2 eggs, beaten
1 teaspoon worcestershire sauce
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon Italian Seasoning
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon garlic powder
2 pounds ground beef (80/20 works best – don’t use anything too lean)
1/2 cup Italian dried bread crumbs
In a large bowl combine onion, eggs, worcestershire sauce, parmesan cheese, Italian seasoning, salt, pepper and garlic powder; mix well.
Crumble ground beef into mixture and mix with your hands until just combined. Don’t “squeeze” the mixture with your hands – overworking the meat is what yields that “corky” texture.
Add bread crumbs and continue to mix the ingredients until everything is just combined and starts to stick together. Add more bread crumbs if necessary until the mixture holds together.
Shape into balls by hand or try this trick: Turn mixture out onto a cutting board or clean counter and shape into a rectangle. Pat her down good and keep working on it until it’s perfectly shaped. Using a sharp knife, cut the mixture into 20-24 squares. Roll each square into a ball. This way all the meatballs will be exactly the same size without having eyeball each one.
Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil (for easy clean-up) and spray with cooking spray. Place meatballs onto baking sheet and bake at 400 degrees for 18-20 minutes.
This recipe was featured at the Weekend Potluck!