I know I’m not the first person to do this but I think it’s such a great idea to be able to cook meatballs and their sauce together, just like in this one-pot spicy meatballs in tomato sauce recipe.
Usually when making meatballs I’ll brown them off before finishing in the oven, or just cook them straight in a hot oven. These two methods mean that you do get a nice little crust on the meatballs. However, in the recipe I’m sharing with you today the meatballs are cooked in the tomato sauce. Therefore they are a little softer on the outside, almost like the texture that you get with the meatballs in some Asian style soups. It may sound strange to cook meatballs in this fashion but I can tell you it really works well. And there’s no easier way to prepare meatballs and tomato sauce.
I’ve been really getting into using my Dutch oven lately at home, it always gets a real workout in the winter months, before getting a well earned rest in the back of the cupboard during spring and summer. If you haven’t yet, check out my easy dutch oven beef & chic pea soup. It’s the one-pot that I use for this one-pot spicy meatballs in tomato sauce recipe. However, you can easily adapt this recipe for a crock-pot, slow cooker or even just a heavy bottomed pot with a lid on your stovetop.
Someone else in our house who has really been getting into the Dutch oven as well is…….. not Kylie but our smaller dog Rip. When I take it out of the cupboard he senses what is going to happen, some kind of food preparation that is and he takes up his position by the kitchen pantry. He watches me like a hawk, as I go to the cupboards and the fridge. By the time I have a cutting board out and something on it I hear heavy breathing and look down to see…
It’s kinda like he’s half begging, half waiting for something to drop. And when it does… man he’s on it quick. He’s the most dedicated little guy on the planet, he’ll stand in the kitchen all day just staring at you preparing food and waiting for the chance of a stray scrap of food falling off the counter-top. Now and then, whilst doing something like rolling the actual meatballs you will hear a little gasp or sigh, or the gentle tap-tap-tap of his tail hitting the ground in anticipation. So I can’t help it sometimes, I’ll hold a little morsel up in my hand, he’ll look up at it with one cute little paw held up…
I’ll drop it. And it’ll quickly disappear.
Anyway, back to this recipe. Super easy, you don’t have to sweat off any onions or garlic for the tomato sauce. There is onion and garlic in the meatballs themselves, and their flavour is kind of infused into the sauce during the cooking process. Again if you don’t actually have a Dutch oven, you can use a crock-pot, slow cooker or even just use a pot with a lid on the stovetop. If you do use the stovetop method take care to maintain a low heat and stir occasionally to ensure the pot doesn’t catch on the bottom.
We served these spicy meatballs with some whole grain spaghetti. But you can serve them with any of your favourite pasta, rice, vegetables or even on their own. Let me know how you get on with the recipe and I hope that you enjoy the eating as much as Rip enjoyed the watching of me preparing these one-pot spicy meatballs in tomato sauce!
- 14oz (400g) ground beef/ beef mince
- 1 free-range egg
- 2 tablespoons sweet chilli sauce
- 2 tablespoons Japanese soy sauce
- ½ cup cilantro/ coriander leaves picked, washed and chopped
- ½ cup whole grain breadcrumbs
- salt & pepper to taste
- 3 cloves crushed garlic
- 1 medium sized brown onion finely diced
- 14oz (400g )tin chopped tomatoes
- 1 cup chicken stock
- ½ cup white wine
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- salt & pepper
- Heat oven to 350 (180C). Place the ground beef in a large mixing bowl, add the rest of the meatball ingredients and gently mix them together using your hands. Season to taste and roll the mixture into balls roughly 1 inch in diameter (I got 30 balls from this recipe).
- Place your Dutch oven on the stovetop and place all the sauce ingredients inside. Give it a good stir and then cover and bring to the boil over a medium-high heat. When the sauce is up to the boil, remove from heat and add the meatballs. Use a kitchen spoon or simular to take care not to splash your self with hot sauce.
- Place the Dutch oven covered, in heated oven for 15 minutes. Remove and allow to stand for a few minutes before serving.