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Homemade Spaghetti and Meatballs

Spaghetti and meatballs, my recipe contains juicy pork & beef balls with parmesan & pine nuts and a tomato & Worcestershire sauce, erm sauce.

Cooking my version of this modern classic dish takes around 40 minutes and prep takes around 10-15, but all of the preparation can be done in advance!

Homemade spaghetti and meatballs with grated parmesan cheese and basil.

Meatball Pasta My Way

You only have to mention spaghetti and meatballs on social media and eventually a tedious gatekeeping bore will turn up and lecture on how “un-Italian” it is.

As if this somehow devalues what is an obviously loved, delicious and hearty meal for millions around the world.

Meatballs are magic and I love them, they feature here all of the time.

I have everything from minted lamb meatballs to pork meatballs in a beer sauce. And beefy teriyaki meatballs and meatball pasta bake. Oh, yeah, chicken, I have a chicken kofta meatball curry too!

My version of this modern classic features a mix of beef and pork mince. They are packed with toasted pine nuts, parmesan cheese and fresh parsley.

The tomato sauce is incredibly simple and it gets a punch of flavour and spice from some reduced Worcestershire sauce. It gives it a whole “bloody mary” vibe that I love!

Homemade spaghetti and meatballs with grated parmesan cheese.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do you have any recommendations on the meat for this recipe?

I prefer fattier cuts of both types of meat for my meatballs.

Aim for around 15% fat or you will end up with dry meatballs. No amount of tomato sauce can cover up dry balls!

What is tomato passata?

A question often asked by my US-based readers, it is nothing more than sieved tomatoes and in the US it is called tomato puree.

If all you have is tinned tomatoes, blend them well and pass them through a sieve because I like a smooth sauce in this recipe.

Can I make this in advance?

Yes, the sauce and meatballs will save perfectly well in the fridge for 2-3 days, all you then need to do is cook some pasta and combine it all.

Will the meatballs freeze well?

Definitely! Mix them up and drop them into a freezer bag, squeeze out any air and finally drop them in the freezer.

They will be fine for up to 3 months, I personally prefer to defrost mine before cooking them.

Can I freeze the meatballs in the pasta?

Yes, although it is not an approach that I favour, reheating the meatballs can lead to them drying out a little.

The sauce also becomes a little “duller”, and I personally prefer the sauce to be cooked fresh.

But the freezing process is the same as for the raw meatballs, just drop them in a freezer bag, squeeze out the air and drop them in the freezer.

Again I would defrost them before serving, I would reheat them gently in a saucepan with a lid over a low heat.

Close-up pasta with meatballs, grated parmesan cheese and basil.

Serving Suggestions

As far as I am concerned spaghetti and meatballs are all that is needed here, no sides are required!

My wife kind likes to add garlic bread and to be fair that sentence could equally be appended to any of my recipes!

I do however think that the sauce must be stirred through the pasta.

Undressed pasta is not good to eat and pasta needs to be dressed whilst hot.

So please, for the love of all that is good, stir your sauce through your pasta before putting it on the plate… or don’t, it’s your dinner after all!

Overhead homemade spaghetti and meatballs with grated parmesan cheese.

Equipment Used

I only recommend specific brands of equipment if I think they make a material difference to a recipe. If you have any questions feel free to ask them in the comments section below the recipe.

  • 28-30cm (11-12″) frying pan or skillet.
  • 20cm+ (8″+) saucepan.
  • Mixing bowl.
  • Chopping board.
  • Kitchen knife.
  • Weighing scales and or measuring cups and spoons.
  • Grater.
Homemade spaghetti and meatballs with fresh basil and grated parmesan cheese.
Yield: 2 Servings

Homemade Spaghetti and Meatballs Recipe

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes

Spaghetti and meatballs is an all-time comfort food family favourite, mine packs pork and beef meatballs with parmesan cheese, pine nuts and parsley and then cooks them in a tomato sauce featuring a Worcestershire sauce reduction! Simple, delicious and a real break from the norm!


For the Meatballs

  • 150g (5oz) Minced Beef
  • 150g (5oz) Minced Pork
  • 30g (¼ Cup) Pine Nuts
  • 50g (⅓ Cup) Onion
  • 2 Cloves Garlic
  • 10g (¼ Cup) Fresh Parsley
  • 1 Egg Yolk
  • 25g (⅓ Cup) Dried Bread Crumbs
  • ½ Tsp Salt
  • ½ Tsp Black Pepper
  • 50g (⅓ Cup) Parmesan Cheese (plus extra for garnish)

For the Sauce

  • 225g (1 Cup) Tomato Passata
  • 50ml (3 Tbsp + 1 Tsp ) Worcestershire Sauce
  • 2 Tbsp Cooking Oil
  • ½ Tsp Onion Salt
  • 1 Tsp Dried Oregano
  • 1 Tsp Dried Basil
  • 12 Fresh Basil Leaves (plus extra for garnish)
  • 175g (6oz) Spaghetti


  1. Grate the onion.
  2. Mash the garlic cloves.
  3. Chop the parsley.
  4. Toast the pinenuts in a heavy-based frying pan or skillet (28-30cm or 11-12") over a high heat for 2-3 minutes
  5. Add all of the ingredients for the meatballs into a bowl and just bring them together to form a large ball.
  6. Roll into 10, 45g, or 35mnm (1½") meatballs.
  7. Add the oil to the pan and sear the meatballs until coloured on all sides approx 4-5 minutes.
  8. Remove the meatballs from the pan and drain off all but a scant covering of oil before returning to the heat.
  9. Pour in the Worcestershire sauce and then reduce for a minute and a half or so, scraping the base of the pan as you go.
  10. When the Worcestershire sauce has reduced significantly reduce the temperature to medium.
  11. Pour in the tomato passata, and add the dried basil, oregano and garlic salt.
  12. Return the meatballs to the pan and toss to coat with the sauce.
  13. Add a lid, reduce to a low simmer and cook for 20 minutes.
  14. After the meatballs have been cooking for 10 minutes cook the pasta as per the instructions on the packet in well-salted boiling water () .
  15. Drain the pasta reserving 75ml (⅓ Cup) of the pasta water.
  16. Remove the meatballs from the sauce and add the drained pasta and stir adding the cooking water as you go to form a nice coating.
  17. Finely shred the fresh basil leaves and stir them through the sauce.
  18. Serve the spaghetti, topped with your meatballs and then sprinkle with as much freshly grated parmesan as you like.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 894Total Fat: 48gSaturated Fat: 15gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 27gCholesterol: 246mgSodium: 1985mgCarbohydrates: 56gFiber: 5gSugar: 10gProtein: 59g

Calorific details are provided by a third-party application and are to be used as indicative figures only.

Did you make this recipe?

If you made this recipe, I'd love to see what you did and what I can do better, share a picture with me on Instagram and tag me @krumplibrian and tell me how it went!

Katie C

Thursday 28th of September 2017

This is a beautiful bowl of spaghetti and meatballs! WOW!!! Talk about comfort food. This looks fantastic.

Brian Jones

Thursday 28th of September 2017

Thanks Katie, the pine nuts in them add so much to the dish, we love these meatballs!


Sunday 6th of December 2015

I've never had pine nuts in my meatballs, but I think I am definitely going to have to give it a try! I could eat meatballs as a meal by themselves, though.

Brian Jones

Monday 7th of December 2015

They really work apparently it is a really old idea to add pine nuts and I love it... With you on munching down on a big plate of meatballs!

Byron Thomas

Saturday 5th of December 2015

There are three things about this dish that I'm totally digging - the beef, the pork, and the pine nuts. Great looking dish!

Brian Jones

Sunday 6th of December 2015

Teehee, thanks Byron :)

Mary (The Godmother @ Goodie Godmother)

Friday 4th of December 2015

The Godfather is resident "meat expert" around here, and I'm leaving the tab open to share this recipe with him! We need to try pine nuts in the meatballs, I bet it's delicious! So far we've done ground almond, hazelnut, and macadamia as a way to use up the bits of flour from my baking, but we haven't blended beef and pork, or added some of the other flavors (I don't think... I don't really pay attention to him when he's working to be honest). Looks delicious!

Brian Jones

Sunday 6th of December 2015

Haha, thank you, I hope it met with approval, I love mixing pork with beef for meatballs... Pork has a far superior fat quality and quantity for me and beef a superior flavour, so the best of both worlds :)


Thursday 3rd of December 2015

Ugh; perfect. Wish I could dig into this right now!!

Brian Jones

Sunday 6th of December 2015

Thank you :)

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