Chris’s Italian Meatball Recipe

This is an easy recipe and takes about a half hour of prep and 2 hours cooking time. The sauce can be used for Bolognaise or other tomato based dishes.

Serves four to six portions.



  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh basil
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped oregano or 2 teaspoons of dried oregano
  • ½ cup finely chopped onions
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ¼ cup water
  • 500g minced meat 50/50 pork and beef.
  • ½ cup dried Italian style bread crumbs
  • ½ cup (50g) freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese (plus more for serving)
  • 500g spaghetti


  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons crushed garlic
  • ½ cup finely chopped onions
  • 200g tomato paste
  • 2kg pealed and chopped fresh tomatoes or canned tomatoes
  • 2 teaspoons salt (or more)
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon Italian Seasoning



Using a large pot, heat the olive oil over medium-low heat. Once hot, add the onion and garlic, sauté until onions are translucent, about 3 minutes.
Stir in the tomato paste and cook for 1 minute.
Stir in the canned tomatoes, salt, and pepper. Simmer covered, with lid slightly ajar to prevent splattering for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
You need not peel the tomatoes if they are a variety with soft skins, they will add body to the sauce.


Set the oven rack to the lower-middle position and set the temperature to 180 deg. Line a large baking sheet with foil and lightly grease it with olive oil. Set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together the egg, basil, parsley, oregano, salt, pepper, minced garlic, chopped onion, Italian seasoning and water. Add the meat, breadcrumbs and cheese and mix until just combined using your hands.
Measure and roll the mince meat mixture into ⅓ cup (golf ball size) rounds. Evenly space the pieces on the baking sheet.
Grill the meatballs in the oven until their surface is browned, about 10 to 12 minutes. Turn over and cook for an additional 2 to 3 minutes to lightly brown the other side.
Transfer the meatballs to the tomato sauce. Cover the pot with the lid slightly ajar, simmer on low heat for at least 1 ½ hours, checking and stirring every 20 minutes, or as needed. The meatballs should be fork tender when sliced.
If the sauce has been reduced too much you may thin it using a little boiling water until the consistency is how you like it.


Cut a small cross in the bottom of the tomato. Place one or more in boiling water for about 30 seconds then remove and dunk in cold water for about 5 minutes. The skins should peel quite easily.