Spaghetti and Meatballs with Red Sauce

This easy family meal is always a hit with the kids. We like to pair it with a bottle of our Alder Springs Syrah.

Tip from Hilary: To pack as much nutrition as possible into this dish, substitute a spaghetti squash for the noodles. To prep the squash, slice it in half lengthwise, scoop out the seeds, cover it with olive oil, salt and pepper, place it face-down on a sheet pan, and bake it for about 45 minutes at 375°.


  • sourdough bread
  • milk
  • 1 lb ground sirloin
  • 1 egg
  • onion powder
  • garlic powder
  • Parmesan cheese
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 lb pasta (or spaghetti squash)
  • olive oil
  • shallot
  • garlic
  • 1 28-oz can San Marzano tomato sauce
  • 1 28-oz can San Marzano tomatoes, whole
  • Italian seasoning
  • bay leaf


Preset your oven to 375 ° if you plan to bake (rather than fry) your meatballs. Make ¼ cup of sourdough breadcrumbs in a food processor or blender. Soak the breadcrumbs in milk for a few minutes.

Add the breadcrumb mix to 1 lb ground sirloin, and combine with 1 egg, and approximately 1 tsp onion powder, 1 tsp garlic powder, ¼ cup Parmesan cheese, and 1 tsp each salt and pepper. Mix and form into tablespoon-size balls.

You can either cook these on the stovetop, frying them over medium-high heat, or bake them in the oven on a sheet pan for less mess, at 375 ° for about 20 minutes. We usually go the oven route to cut down on cleanup time.

To make the sauce, chop about 1 Tbsp shallot and two garlic cloves, and sauté over medium-low heat with 2 Tbsp olive oil in a large pan. Add a 28-oz can of San Marzano tomato sauce and a 28-oz can of San Marzano whole tomatoes. Add about 1 Tbsp Italian seasoning and a bay leaf. Simmer for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat a pot of salted water to boil, add 16 oz pasta, and cook to al dente, unless you’ve decided to serve spaghetti squash.

Use an immersion blender to lightly purée the tomato sauce, leaving the amount of chunkiness you like in your sauce. (Side note: This also makes a simple, delicious tomato soup.) Season with salt and add in the cooked meatballs to simmer together and allow the flavors to marry before serving.

Image courtesy of Gary Barnes for Pexels.