Herbed Potluck Meatballs

I was in a bit of a hurry when I took this photo so it's a bit blurry

This past week was our new graduate student potluck that we host every new semester. I enjoy meeting new people but all the while I try to bring something substantial for myself because I never know what people will bring. I like having something good for me that everyone can enjoy. I also like something easy to prepare. For this potluck I made meatballs. Last time I made pulled pork and had about 3 servings of leftovers, so I thought this would be the case for my meatballs. I should have made more because at the end of dinner there were only 2 meatballs left! These were so simple and so good I even made another smaller batch this weekend. There's not a huge list of ingredients, with most of the flavor coming from taking the extra step to roast the meatballs before putting them into the slow cooker.

This recipe was made even easier by using store-bought sauce. I read a lot of labels before selecting Ragu, which happened to have a relatively short ingredient list plus it was pretty cheap. I selected a no sugar added version. I was surprised by how many sauces had soybean oil...I figured they'd use olive oil because they're pasta sauces, but again you have to be careful with the labels.

Inexpensive, plus the list of ingredients seem pretty natural

Herbed Potluck Meatballs
Printable Recipe

2 1/2 lbs ground sirloin
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 cup finely diced onion
1 tbsp dried parsley
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp dried oregano
2 cups marinara sauce
salt and pepper, to taste
small amount of olive oil

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
2. Line a large baking pan with foil for easy cleanup and lightly brush with olive oil.
3. In a large bowl mix the meat, garlic, onion, herbs, and some salt and pepper. Your hands are the best tool for this. Form meatballs from about a tablespoonful of meat. I managed to make 51 meatballs. Line them up on the baking pan.
4. Bake the meatballs for 18 minutes (longer if you make larger meatballs).
5. Add about 1/2 cup of sauce to the bottom of the slow cooker. Add a single layer of meatballs, adding a little sauce on top of them. Continue layering meatballs and sauce. Turn the slow cooker on low and cook for 2-4 hours, just long enough to allow the meat and sauce to blend in flavor. Serve warm.

Labels: , , , , , , ,