Italian Meatballs with Tomato Sauce

    9 hours

    This dish may take a little while to make, but the results are really worth it. Meatballs made with beef, pork, veal and Pecorino Romano are served with a rich tomato sauce.

    35 people made this

    Serves: 10 

    • 1.35kg tomato puree
    • 2.85 litres water
    • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
    • 2 bay leaves
    • 1 tablespoon dried basil leaves
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • 5 pork chops
    • 1 onion, diced
    • 225g mushrooms, sliced
    • 450g minced beef
    • 115g minced pork
    • 115g minced veal
    • 120g grated Pecorino Romano cheese
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
    • 135g dry breadcrumbs
    • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
    • 2 tablespoons dried parsley
    • 2 eggs

    Prep:1hr  ›  Cook:8hr  ›  Ready in:9hr 

    1. In a large pot combine tomato puree, water, garlic, bay leaves, basil and salt. Bring to the boil, turn heat down to low and simmer.
    2. In a frying pan, brown pork chops in olive oil then place in sauce mixture. Saute onions and mushrooms in same pan that you browned the pork chops. Add these to sauce as well. Simmer sauce a minimum of 8 hours, stirring occasionally.
    3. To make the meatballs: Preheat oven to 180 C / Gas 4. Combine beef, pork, veal, Pecorino Romano cheese, salt, pepper, breadcrumbs, garlic, parsley and eggs; mix well. Shape into balls. Place on a baking tray that has been sprayed with cooking oil spray.
    4. Bake meatballs for 20 minutes. Place meatballs in a serving bowl when baking is complete and place in refrigerator. About 2 hours prior to dinner, pop the meatballs into the sauce.

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    Reviews in English (23)


    I use double pork to beef and miss out the veal but the results are great, loved by all the family  -  22 Mar 2015


    The meatballs for this recipe are fantastic, but the proportions for the sauce are all wrong. There's so much tomato paste, and so little of anything else, that the whole thing ends up tasting like tomato paste. I would go with 30 ounces of paste and 18 ounces of tomato sauce, rather than 48 ounces of paste and no sauce. Also, throw in 2 onions instead of 1, twice as much mushroom, bay leaf, and basil, 6 (or more) garlic cloves, half a cup or so of parsely, and 2 teaspoons each of oregano and thyme. Stand by with some sugar (a tablespoon or two) if you need to cut it further. Also, when the porkchops simmer for 8 hours, they end up tasteless without adding anything to the sauce, so maybe put them in later. If there's less concentrated paste flavor and more other flavors, this sauce would be great. (Again, the meatballs are wonderful.) But as it is, it's not worth 9 hours of your time. (Also, this makes a lot more than 10 servings; I'd guess 15 or 20.)  -  09 Jan 2006  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)


    I made the meatballs only. Although I didn't care for the original recipe, my second batch was fabulous with a few modifications. ***I only used 3/4c. bread crumbs. I used 1/2# sweet Italian pork sausage rather than ground pork and veal. And I used an Italian Herb blend rather than just dried parsley.*** I did simmer them in jarred sauce. Both the meatballs and sauce improved each other! YUM, YUm, Yum, yum!  -  24 May 2003  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)