Big-Batch Meatballs and Red Sauce

Prep Time
1h 25 min
6 - 9 servings

Buy some extra meat and simmer a little extra sauce. Then pack your freezer with dinner that just has to be thawed, reheated and tossed with some pasta.




cup olive oil
cloves garlic, thinly sliced
2 28-oz
cans whole peeled tomatoes, crushed by hand
Handful torn fresh basil leaves
Kosher salt


slice stale white sandwich bread
cup milk
1 ½
lb(s) ground beef
1 ½
lb(s) ground pork
cup grated Parmesan
large eggs, beaten
small onion, grated
cup fresh parsley, roughly chopped
cloves garlic, finely grated
Kosher salt
large pinch crushed red pepper flakes
Olive oil, for the baking sheets



This recipe has been updated and may differ from what was originally published or broadcast.

Step 1

Swirl the oil and garlic in a medium saucepan over medium heat until the garlic is just lightly browned and fragrant, about 4 minutes. Add the tomatoes and 1 cup water, and bring to a high simmer. Reduce the heat to medium-low, add the basil and 2 teaspoons salt and simmer, uncovered, until thickened, 20 to 25 minutes. Set aside and keep warm.

Step 2

Preheat the oven to 425ºF. Tear the bread into very small pieces and put it in a small bowl. Pour the milk over the bread, and let sit until the bread is soft, about 5 minutes.

Step 3

Combine the bread mixture with the beef, pork, Parmesan, eggs, onions, parsley, garlic, 2 teaspoons salt and red pepper flakes in a large bowl, and thoroughly mix with your hands. Divide the mixture evenly into 36 mounds, and roll each into a ball.

Step 4

Brush 2 rimmed baking sheets generously with oil. Evenly divide the meatballs between the sheets, and roll them around to coat in oil. Bake until golden brown and cooked through, rotating the sheets halfway through if needed, 15 to 20 minutes.

Step 5

Transfer the meatballs to the warm sauce, and cook for 5 minutes over medium-low heat. Let the meatballs and sauce cool completely, divide evenly among four 1-quart containers and freeze for up to 1 month.

Step 6

To reheat: Let a container of the meatballs and sauce thaw in the refrigerator overnight. Transfer them to a microwave-safe container, and microwave in 2-minute increments, gently stirring after each, until the meatballs are heated through.

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