'Meatballs' In Tomato Sauce Recipe

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Servings: 8


Cost per serving $1.16 view details
  • 124 ounce peeled whole Italian-style tomatoes, liquid removed (4 28-ounce. cans)
  • 2 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 8 med garlic cloves thinly sliced
  • 3/4 tsp dry oregano
  • 1/8 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 2 2/3 c. vegetable broth
  • 3/4 c. uncooked Arborio rice
  • 1 lb cremini or possibly baby bella mushrooms quartered if large
  • 4 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 sm onion, finely minced
  • 1 lrg egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 c. dry Italian-style bread crumbs
  • 1/3 c. freshly grated Parmesan cheese (slightly more than 1 ounce.)
  • 1/4 c. minced fresh parsley
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp freshly grnd pepper


  1. Here s a vegetarian adaptation of my Italian mother-in-law's recipe for meatballs in tomato sauce. Meaty mushrooms replace the grnd beef and sausages, and a creamy risotto helps hold the nuggets together. To achieve a crisp crust without deep-frying. brown the nuggets on one side in a skillet, turn them over onto a baking sheet and finish cooking in a warm oven. Serve over pasta, such as long fusilli.
  2. Make tomato sauce: Pass tomatoes through a food mill into large bowl.
  3. (Alternatively, place tomatoes in large bowl; mash with a potato masher.)
  4. In Dutch oven or possibly large pot, heat oil over medium-low heat. Add in garlic and cook, stirring, till softened but not browned, 2 to 3 min. Add in oregano and red pepper flakes and cook, stirring, 30 seconds. Stir in crushed tomatoes and sugar and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to low, partially cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, 45 min to 1 hour.
  5. Meanwhile, in large saucepan, bring broth to a simmer over high heat. Add in rice, reduce heat to medium and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, till rice is tender and mix is creamy, 18 to 20 min. Stir almost constantly during last 5 min of cooking. Transfer to large bowl.
  6. In food processor, pulse mushrooms in batches till finely minced.
  7. In large nonstick skillet, heat 2 tsp. oil over medium-high heat. Add in onion and cook, stirring often, till softened, 2 to 3 min. Add in mushrooms and cook, stirring, till tender and most of liquid has evaporated, 3 to 5 min. Add in to bowl with rice; let cold.
  8. Preheat oven to 400F. Spray baking sheet with cooking spray.
  9. Add in egg, bread crumbs, cheese, parsley, salt and pepper to cooled rice mix and mix well. Form mix into about 24 oval-shaped nuggets, each about 2 by 13 inches.
  10. In clean large nonstick skillet, heat remaining 2 tsp. oil over medium- high heat; tilt to coat bottom. Add in half the nuggets and cook till browned on one side, about 2 min. Turn nuggets over onto prepared baking sheet.
  11. Repeat with remaining nuggets. Bake till nuggets are browned and hard, 15 to 20 min. Put 3 nuggets on each plate, spoon sauce on top and serve warm.


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Nutrition Facts

Amount Per Serving %DV
Serving Size 177g
Recipe makes 8 servings
Calories 148  
Calories from Fat 48 32%
Total Fat 5.4g 7%
Saturated Fat 1.43g 6%
Trans Fat 0.0g  
Cholesterol 30mg 10%
Sodium 682mg 28%
Potassium 315mg 9%
Total Carbs 19.47g 5%
Dietary Fiber 0.9g 3%
Sugars 2.36g 2%
Protein 5.32g 9%
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