This classic Spaghetti and Meatballs recipe has instructions for making homemade meatballs mixed with marinara sauce and hot cooked spaghetti.
Spaghetti and meatballs has always been a favorite to order on an Italian restaurant menu. And many people make spaghetti pretty regularly at home. But do they include meatballs in that meal? Most likely, not! I’m teaching you how to make homemade meatballs so that everyone can enjoy the complete, classic Italian dish.
- ground beef
- panko breadcrumbs
- whole milk
- Parmesan cheese
- fresh parsley
- Italian seasoning
- garlic powder
- marinara sauce
- fresh basil
Try using a combination of ground meats. Italian sauce, ground pork, ground turkey and ground veal are all good choices. You can substitute regular breadcrumbs for the panko breadcrumbs. It’s super easy to buy good, jarred marinara sauce (I like the Classico brand). But if you’re up for it, try making my homemade marinara sauce. Spaghetti and meatballs doesn’t have to be made with only spaghetti! Try using other kinds of pasta like penne, rigatoni or rotini.
How to make homemade meatballs:
Combine ground beef, breadcrumbs, whole milk, Parmesan cheese, chopped onion, parsley, eggs, Italian seasoning, garlic powder and salt/pepper. Form the meat mixture into 3-tablespoon round balls. Place them on a baking sheet and bake until they are cooked through- about 20 minutes. Move the meatballs to a bowl and combine them with warm marinara sauce.
How to make Spaghetti and Meatballs:
Cook the spaghetti according to the package instructions. Toss the pasta with marinara sauce. Add the saucy meatballs to the pasta. Add more marinara sauce.
Plate individual servings, and garnish with Parmesan cheese and fresh basil.
Every day is a good day to make spaghetti and meatballs. It’s a filling meal that everyone loves. If you want to lighten things up, try serving meatballs with marinara sauce over zucchini noodles (zoodles) instead.
Leftovers of spaghetti and meatballs is the best thing ever. Have it for lunch the following day, or have it for dinner two nights in a row. Enjoy!
Spaghetti and Meatballs
- 2 pounds ground beef
- 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
- ½ medium yellow onion, peeled and grated
- ½ cup whole milk
- 2 large eggs
- ¼ cup minced fresh parsley
- ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 24 ounces marinara sauce, warmed
- 24 ounces marinara sauce, warmed (divided)
- 16 ounces spaghetti noodles, cooked to al dente (according to package instructions)
- fresh basil, for garnish (optional)
- fresh Parmesan cheese, for garnish (optional)
PREPARE THE MEATBALLS:
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet with foil and lightly spray the foil with olive oil cooking spray.
- Add all meatball ingredients (except marinara sauce) to a large bowl and use your hands to combine. Scoop the meat mixture into 3-tablespoon-sized balls and arrange them on the prepared baking sheet. You should get about 24 meatballs.
- Bake the meatballs until they are cooked through (ground beef should be cooked to an internal temperature of 160 degrees F, which you can check with an instant-read thermometer), about 15 to 20 minutes. If you want to brown the tops, broil the meatballs briefly after baking. Add the meatballs to a large bowl and toss with 1 jar of warmed marinara sauce.
ASSEMBLE THE SPAGHETTI AND MEATBALLS:
- Toss the cooked spaghetti with ½ jar of warmed marinara sauce. Place the meatballs on top of the spaghetti, and serve along with the remaining ½ jar of marinara sauce to spoon on top, if desired.
- Serve with fresh basil leaves and freshly grated parmesan cheese for topping.