I grew up eating Campbell’s SpaghettiOs™ with meatballs. I would rush home from school at lunch and get me a big hot bowl of SpaghettiOs™, along with some grated Parmesan cheese. The key to proper SpaghettiOs™ eating for me was to eat all the noodles first, saving the meatballs for last. There were just never enough meatballs. And they were too small. Well, this recipe for homemade SpaghettiOs solves that problem and then some. Now you can have as many meatballs as you want and make them as large as you want.
This dish is fantastic, actually. As it is, it makes for a great meal for kids and adults alike. Or, add a bit of heat and make it a grownup version of the old classic.
- 1 pound lean ground beef
- 1 shallot minced
- 1/2 cup seasoned bread crumbs
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/4 cup ketchup
- 1 egg
- 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan plus more for serving
- Red pepper flake to taste (optional)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 pound small round pasta I used ditalini
- 4 cups really good tomato sauce I used Pomi
- Preheat oven to 400 F.
- In a large bowl, combine the beef, shallot, bread crumbs, oregano, ketchup, egg two tablespoons of the cheese, and red pepper flake (if using). Add a few pinches of salt and pepper.
- Heat the oil in a large skillet.
- Working in batches, roll the beef into small 1/2" or so round balls (I admit, mine were probably more like an 1" around). You'll make a lot of meatballs.
- Add meatballs to the skillet but do not crowd them. Brown on one side, then flip and brown on the other side. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate.
- Slowly place all of the meatballs into a dutch oven or other large oven-safe dish.
- Add the tomato sauce but do not stir.
- Cover and place in the oven for 20-30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, cook the pasta per package instructions and drain well.
- Remove meatballs from oven and gently stir in the pasta.
- Serve with more Parmesan cheese.