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Not-So-Traditional Spaghetti and Meatballs

Not-So-Traditional Spaghetti and Meatballs


"Everyone will wonder what you did differently this time around. The secret is cilantro. Cilantro is wonderful in guacamole but it takes on a whole different flavor in these delicious meatballs. Trust me, I've made these for many potlucks and everyone always loves them. Even people who swear they hate cilantro. Serve the meatballs and sauce over spaghetti."
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2 h servings 438 cals
Serving size has been adjusted!
Original recipe yields 8 servings


  • Calories:
  • 438 kcal
  • 22%
  • Fat:
  • 20.4 g
  • 31%
  • Carbs:
  • 36.3g
  • 12%
  • Protein:
  • 26.4 g
  • 53%
  • Cholesterol:
  • 121 mg
  • 40%
  • Sodium:
  • 2450 mg
  • 98%

Based on a 2,000 calorie diet

See full nutrition

Nutritional Information

1 Serving
Servings Per Recipe:
Amount Per Serving
  • * Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
  • ** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.
  • (-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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  • Prep

  • Cook

  • Ready In

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Place wire racks over 2 baking sheets lined with aluminum foil.
  2. Combine beef, salt, oregano, basil, black pepper, rosemary, and chili powder in a large bowl. Stir in eggs, onion, cilantro, and garlic until evenly distributed. Gradually incorporate bread crumbs until mixture is moist but not gooey.
  3. Scoop up meat mixture using a mini ice cream scoop and shape into balls that are slightly smaller than golf balls. Arrange meatballs on prepared wire racks.
  4. Bake in the preheated oven until golden, about 30 minutes. Flip and continue baking until browned on the other side, about 15 minutes more.
  5. Transfer meatballs to a large pot; pour in pasta sauce. Bring to a simmer; cook until flavors combine, at least 30 minutes.


  • Cook's Notes:
  • Your onion, garlic, and cilantro must be finely chopped or you'll have big chunks sticking out of your meatballs. I chop everything by hand; I tried using a food processor before and it turned my onion into mush. Everything should hold easily when you try and form your meatballs without having to press the mix together too much. Too dry? Add more egg. Too wet? More breadcrumbs.
  • If you need to, you can use up to three 24-ounce jars of Prego(R) to cover all the meatballs you have made. The meatballs will give the sauce you use a wonderful flavor.
  • These are great for making a day in advance; they taste even better the next day.
  • Instead of baking the meatballs, you can also cook them on the stovetop in a lightly-oiled skillet over medium heat until they develop a nice dark color. You'll have to work in batches. Drain on paper towels to remove excess oil.

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Read all reviews 3
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I apologize for having used oatmeal instead of Italian seasoned bread crumbs, but when I saw all the wonderful herbs in this recipe just I had to try it - regardless that I lacked bread crumbs i...

I took the previous reviewer's suggestion and halved the salt but it was still too salty. I really don't think you need any extra salt for this recipe.

Way too much salt in the original recipe! I don't like using much salt in my food anyways, so I only used 1/2 tsp. I don't care for the chili powder, but the cilantro was certainly a unique addi...

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