Grandma's Homemade Italian Sauce and Meatballs Recipe -
Grandma's Homemade Italian Sauce and Meatballs Recipe
  • READY IN 9 hr

Grandma's Homemade Italian Sauce and Meatballs

Recipe by  

"This recipe has been handed down for generations and is always a hit. Both the sauce and meatballs freeze well. I freeze in dinner size portions so my husband and I don't have to use the bottled sauce!"

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Ingredients Edit and Save

Original recipe makes 10 servings Change Servings
  • PREP

    1 hr
  • COOK

    8 hrs

    9 hrs


  1. In a large pot combine tomato paste, water, garlic, bay leaves, basil, and salt. Bring to a boil, turn heat down to low and simmer.
  2. In a skillet, brown pork chops in olive oil then place in sauce mixture. Saute onions and mushrooms in same pan that you browned the pork chops. Add these to sauce as well. Simmer sauce a minimum of 8 hours, stirring occasionally.
  3. To make the meatballs: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Combine beef, pork, veal, Romano cheese, salt, pepper, bread crumbs, garlic, parsley and eggs; mix well. Shape into balls. Place on a baking sheet that has been sprayed with cooking spray.
  4. Bake meatballs for 20 minutes. Place meatballs in a serving bowl when baking is complete and place in refrigerator. About 2 hours prior to dinnertime pop the meatballs into the sauce.
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Reviews More Reviews

Most Helpful Positive Review
Nov 01, 2003

I made the meatballs only. Although I didn't care for the original recipe, my second batch was fabulous with a few modifications. ***I only used 3/4c. bread crumbs. I used 1/2# sweet Italian pork sausage rather than ground pork and veal. And I used an Italian Herb blend rather than just dried parsley.*** I did simmer them in jarred sauce. Both the meatballs and sauce improved each other! YUM, YUm, Yum, yum!

Most Helpful Critical Review
Jan 09, 2006

The meatballs for this recipe are fantastic, but the proportions for the sauce are all wrong. There's so much tomato paste, and so little of anything else, that the whole thing ends up tasting like tomato paste. I would go with 30 ounces of paste and 18 ounces of tomato sauce, rather than 48 ounces of paste and no sauce. Also, throw in 2 onions instead of 1, twice as much mushroom, bay leaf, and basil, 6 (or more) garlic cloves, half a cup or so of parsely, and 2 teaspoons each of oregano and thyme. Stand by with some sugar (a tablespoon or two) if you need to cut it further. Also, when the porkchops simmer for 8 hours, they end up tasteless without adding anything to the sauce, so maybe put them in later. If there's less concentrated paste flavor and more other flavors, this sauce would be great. (Again, the meatballs are wonderful.) But as it is, it's not worth 9 hours of your time. (Also, this makes a lot more than 10 servings; I'd guess 15 or 20.)


29 Ratings

Jan 31, 2005

I just made the meatballs in this case, took advice from other user and only used 3/4 cup of italian bread crumbs, turned out very good, everybody loved them, will make again for sure. 5 star no problem

Jan 22, 2003

This recipe was good, but not the perfect meatballs I have been searching a LONG time for.(I'm pretty picky about my meatballs ;) Actually, I think that all they need is a little more garlic. I must say that they did taste their best the next day and then the next day after that, as most do. I will be trying them again with just a wee bit of modification to "Jess-ize" them. Thank you for sharing...

Feb 11, 2008

I only used the meatball recipe and made with my own pasta sauce. Everyone raved about the meatballs. Very good recipe.

Feb 26, 2003

I just made the meatballs. We really liked them and will make them again. Next time I will try the sauce.

May 24, 2003

I got this recipe for just the meatballs and they were horrible! Way too many breadcrumbs and they tasted like mush.

Nov 01, 2003

I'm not a huge meatball lover but I made these for my husband and he enjoyed them. I made a lot and froze them and they tasted good whenever I used them. I really liked the parmesan flavor. I'll make them again.


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  • Calories
  • 422 kcal
  • 21%
  • Carbohydrates
  • 38.5 g
  • 12%
  • Cholesterol
  • 111 mg
  • 37%
  • Fat
  • 17.6 g
  • 27%
  • Fiber
  • 6.9 g
  • 28%
  • Protein
  • 31.5 g
  • 63%
  • Sodium
  • 1900 mg
  • 76%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

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