Pantry Challenge: Spaghetti and Meatballs

December 21st, 2008 by katie

I know I haven’t been updating my weekly dinners page but this time of year dinners are pretty spontaneous, despite my best intentions. Nevertheless, we are having dinner. Last night, I raided the pantry and freezer for ground beef, italian sausage, and some whole wheat spaghetti. I figured a quick spaghetti and meatballs would really hit the spot before settling in to watch the Christmas specials on TV. I used my meatloaf recipe as a guide for the meatballs because I nearly always have those ingredients on hand and made a simple tomato sauce to go along with them.

Spaghetti and Meatballs

serves 8, prep 10 min, cook time 1 hour
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced, as desired
  • 2 (28 oz) cans crushed tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup carrot puree
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 lb ground chuck
  • 1 lb italian sausage or 4 links
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely minced or made into a paste
  • 1/4 cup bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup dried parsley
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • salt and pepper
  • spaghetti noodles
  • crusty bread
  1. Heat oil over medium in a large pot. Saute onion until clear then add garlic and cook until soft.
  2. Add tomatoes, carrot puree, and season with some salt and pepper. Simmer while making the meatballs
  3. In a large bowl, use a fork to thoroughly mash and combine beef, sausage, eggs, garlic, bread crumbs, parsley, and parmesan cheese.
  4. Form walnut sized meatballs and sear in a large, hot skillet. Once all sides are browned, deglaze with a splash of red wine.
  5. Add meatballs, gently, to sauce to finish cooking. Add red wine and parmesan cheese to sauce.
  6. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add a handful of salt and spaghetti noodles.
  7. Once noodles are al dente, 8-12 min depending on your noodles, reserve 1 cup of water from the pot and drain.
  8. Add water to sauce as needed to thin. Taste and season with salt as needed. Serve!

I am assuming most of you won’t be hanging around here much next week and neither will I.  Considering I have purchased exactly one Christmas gift for my three children, I have some shopping to do!  I will be back after the holidays, probably with even more Pantry Challenge posts, since it seems we have, eh, overextended ourselves this year.  I will also be ringing in the New Year with some diet tips since I have already overextended my waistband as well.

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Posted in Budget, Main Dish, Pantry Challenge

8 Responses

  1. Shannalee

    That photograph is simply GORGEOUS. Perfection. Straight out of a magazine.

    I could learn a lot from your photography, it’s clear!

  2. Lisa@The Cutting Edge of Ordinary

    How funny, I just said to my family the other day “When I’m off next week I think I’ll make a big ole batch of spaghetti and meatballs”. There’s just something comforting about a big ole plate of it that makes it all good! Enjoy your holiday and thanks for all the great recipes in ’08! Looking forward to 2009!

  3. Stacy

    I am so jealous of your gorgeous photography!

  4. Melissa

    That really is a great photo! You know what I love about spaghetti and meatballs is how easy it is to mess with. It’s one of the only things I don’t use strict recipes for and never worry about messing up.

  5. DD

    Would it be absolutely terrible if I said I’ve never made meatballs before? And to think my boyfriend’s favorite meal is spicy spaghetti. You have a lucky house.

  6. Greg Turner

    Great photo! I love that thrown-together meals are often the tastiest and most comforting. This seems like a solid, simple recipe.

  7. Mrs. L

    I think we’ll be right there with you since we kinda over extended too! Merry Christmas.

  8. alexandra's kitchen

    That is the prettiest pantry creation I have ever seen. Well Done! Looks heavenly. And is that your precious child below? So beautiful! cupcakes looks delicious

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About chaos

cha·os -noun 1. a condition or place of great disorder or confusion. My chaotic kitchen is the result of three kids, two adults, dog, cat, and fish, a food obsession, a wine drinking hobby, and too few hours in the day. Between trying to feed a family of five healthy, happy meals, watching my weight, saving my pennies, and staying partially sane I have picked up a few tricks along the way. So here they are: the very best tips, tricks, and recipes from my chaotic kitchen-to yours!

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