Ah meatballs. How do I love thee? Let me count the ways. There's the classic, with spaghetti, linguine or even better, silken ribbons of pappardelle. There's the lunch version…a sub roll stuffed with walnut-sized meatballs, sauce and the perfect slice of mozzarella. And then there's the grandaddy of baked pasta dishes; lasagne Napoletana, with its sublime layers of meatballs, a fine tomato sauce, ricotta, and all manner of other wonderful things.
Here's how you make a delightful slow cooker version. The simplest way from scratch! Feeling lazy? You can substitute frozen meatballs, but we think the from scratch version tastes better.
Slow Cooker Meatballs
4 hours 20 minutes
¾ cup italian seasoned bread crumbs
½ cup cream
2 pounds ground beef
1 teaspoon dried oregano
½ cup parmesan powdered
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 eggs, beaten
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
1 28 oz marinara or spaghetti sauce
1 16 oz can diced tomato
3 tablespoons tomato paste
In a small bowl, combine bread crumbs and cream, and then mix well. Allow to sit for 10 minutes, letting the bread crumbs soak up the cream.
In a large bowl, add in ground beef, oregano, parmesan, garlic, egg, salt and pepper. Add in soaked bread crumbs, and then mix well. Make sure everything is fully incorporated.
Shape into 1 inch balls. If you want to make them bigger, just increase cooking time by 1 hour for every inch.
In a 6-quart slow cooker, add in marinara, diced tomato and tomato paste. Mix well, making sure tomato paste is fully incorporated into marinara.
Add meatballs to sauce in slow cooker. Gently toss in sauce by rocking the pot side to side.
Cook on high for 4 hours or low for 8 hours.
Skim of any fat then gently stir and serve with your favorite pasta!