Family Dinner Challenge – Michelle’s Easy Homemade Meatballs Recipe


May 1, 2019

michelles easy homemade meatballs for family dinner challenge may 2019

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Are you bored cooking the same family dinners over and over? It is easy to get stuck in a rut with family dinners. But help is at hand – Jill & I have taken to Instagram in a new monthly family dinner challenge where we are both given the same 4 or 5 basic ingredients and we have to create a wonderful family dinner which is then voted on by you! This month it was mince beef, an onion, tomatoes and garlic. Read on to get my Easy Homemade Meatballs Recipe!

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My family can be fussy eaters! They prefer plain to spicy, herby dinners. Like most parents I often struggle to find recipes that suit everyone. But these easy meatballs are ready in around 20 minutes and can be made using only 5 basic ingredients. Best of all, there are no eggs, so they are perfect for anyone with an egg allergy.

Of course you can add extra veggies, stock, herbs or anything you like to make it more herby or spicy, but these meatballs and homemade tomato sauce taste great just as they are!

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homemade meatballs passataThis recipe serves 4


  • Olive oil
  • Garlic (crushed)
  • 1 small onion (finely chopped) optional
  • 1 large carrot (finely chopped)
  • 500g minced beef
  • 500g – 700g jar passata
  • Pinch of brown sugar
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • For serving – pasta of your choice (I generally use tagliatelle or spaghetti) & grated parmesan.


  1. Heat a dash of olive oil in a large, shallow pan with a lid.
  2. Chop your onion and carrot finely and add to the pan.
  3. Cover and cook for 2 to 3 minutes.
  4. easy homemade meatballs recipe Add a crushed clove of garlic.
  5. It is at this stage that you can add extra veggies such as courgettes, aubergine, celery, peppers, mushrooms etc. You could also add herbs now too, oregano works well.
  6. Continue to cook for another 2 to 3 minutes, stirring constantly to ensure the garlic doesn’t burn.
  7. Pour in the passata.
  8. You could add a beef stock cube now too for extra richness.
  9. Add a quarter teaspoon of brown sugar (this enhances the tomato flavour)
  10. Cover and leave to cook out on a low heat while you prepare your meatballs.
  11. Place your mince in a large, clean bowl.
  12. Add a good pinch of salt and pepper.
  13. Wash your hands and remove any jewellery (you could wear gloves for this bit)
  14. Use your hands to bring the mince together.
  15. Once it is well mixed, roll into balls. (you could make a couple of large balls for each person or smaller ones if there are arguments over how many everyone gets!)
  16. Carefully add your meatballs to your tomato sauce.
  17. Cover  and continue to cook for 10 to 15 minutes (depending on the size of your meatballs)
  18. Cook the pasta of your choice according to the instructions.
  19. Serve your pasta with meatballs and sauce and a grating of parmesan cheese.
  20. Enjoy!

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Over to you now. Have you tried my easy homemade meatballs recipe? Please share your thoughts, additions or improvements with us in the comments box below.

Michelle's homemade meatballs

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