This time of year, when the air is crisp and the leaves start to change, there is nothing better than slow-cooking a hearty and comforting dinner on Sunday afternoon. These braised meatballs with buttered noodles won’t be on your go-to quick and easy dinner rotation, but I can guarantee that you’ll add it to your special Sunday supper must-make list after you read this post.
Braised Meatballs with Buttered Noodles
I’m hoping to inspire you today because I was inspired to make these meatballs after finding a recipe for tomato and red wine braised meatballs on one of my favorite blogs, Macheesmo. I love the idea of braising meatballs in the oven, which is something I haven’t tried before, and if Nick says it’s good, then it must be true (have you seen his recipes? They all look delicious!). Using his recipe as inspiration I put together my own – his are more Italian-style and I decided to go a… well, I’m not sure what to call it, maybe middle-of-the-US-style meatballs? The combination of flavors I used (things like balsamic vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, and tomatoes) resulted in a beefy, savory concoction reminiscent of the types of things I ate growing up in Wyoming. Yeah, I’ll just go with that.
Anyway, let’s first discuss the meatballs – nothing complicated here, just simple and delicious beef and pork meatballs that first get seared on the stove top. The browned bits they leave behind in the pot are the beginnings of the most wonderful savory sauce that the meatballs then finishing cooking in after you transfer the pot to the oven. After an hour and a half the sauce reduces, the meatballs get all tender, and you get to serve up plates of juicy meatballs coated in a glossy, deeply flavorful sauce.
Oh, and the buttered noodles! They are so simple – just boil some egg noodles, toss them in some butter and herbs and, voila, you now have the perfect buttery bed of pasta for those tender and delicious meatballs. These braised meatballs are stick-to-your-ribs-oh-my-gosh-let’s-eat-it-all-and-pass-out-on-the-couch delicious and the perfect Sunday afternoon kitchen project that will leave everyone feeling happy, full, and loved.
Don’t you want to bring that kind of joy to the world?
More Meatball RecipesPrint
Tender, savory meatballs simmered for hours in the oven paired with buttery noodles is the ultimate weekend comfort food experience.
For the Meatballs
- 4 eggs
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 2 tablespoons 2% milk
- 1 teaspoon fennel seed
- 1teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 cup dried breadcrumbs
- 1 pound ground pork
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1/4 cup olive oil
For the Sauce
- 1/2 onion, cut into 2” chunks
- 2 large carrots, sliced into 2” pieces
- 4 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 1 (28-oz) can whole peeled tomatoes
- 1 cup vegetable stock
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1/2 cup roughly chopped parsley
How to Make the Meatballs
- In a large bowl, mix the eggs, Parmesan cheese, milk, fennel seed, Italian seasoning, garlic powder, and dried breadcrumbs. Add the ground beef and pork to the bowl and mix everything together until it’s combined (I use my hands to do this).
- Take about three tablespoons of the mixture and roll it between your hands to form the meatballs. You end up with about 24 balls – NEED ACTUAL NUMBER
- In a Dutch oven or stockpot – NEED POT SIZE, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Working in batches, cook the meatballs in the oil just until they are seared on the outside, which should only take a few minutes on each side. Remove them from the heat and set them aside.
How to Make the Sauce
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
- Add the onion, carrot, and garlic to the same pan you used to brown the meatballs. Add the balsamic vinegar and, using a spatula or wooden spoon, scrape up any browned bits off the bottom of the pot. Add the whole tomatoes plus all of the liquid in the can. Add the vegetable stock and bring the pot to a simmer. Add the tomato paste and Worcestershire sauce. Add the meatballs to the pot making sure that they are submerged in the liquid. Add the parsley and cover the pot with a lid (leave it slightly open to allow steam to escape while in the oven).
- Place the pot in the preheated oven and cook the meatballs for an hour and a half.
- Remove the pot from the oven and take out all of the meatballs and set them aside. Using a fine-mesh sieve, strain the liquid and discard the solids. Pour the sauce back into the pot and bring it to a boil over high heat. Once it boils reduce the heat to maintain a strong simmer and reduce the sauce for 20 minutes or until it starts to thicken. Add the meatballs to the sauce and reduce the heat to keep it all at a low simmer while you make the noodles.
TASTE FOR SALT
Recipe Inspired by Macheesmo
- Prep Time: 40 minutes
- Cook Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
- Category: Dinner
- Cuisine: American
- Calories: 485
- Sugar: 7.7g
- Fat: 32.3g
- Carbohydrates: 28.8g
- Fiber: 4.4g
- Protein: 21g
Keywords: braised meatballs