Italian meatballs in tomato sauce
Poultry & Meat

Italian Meatballs in Tomato Sauce with Oat Flakes

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The Italian Meatballs in Tomato Sauce it’s a tasty dish, that fills the heart beside the stomach: small balls based on minced meat, milk, eggs, and cheese, slowly cooked in tomato sauce, for this version embellished with crunchy Oat Flakes.

Realize it is much simpler than you might imagine!

Making of meatball

The Italian Meatballs in Tomato Sauce is a dish that should be in the repertoire of all, for you to make a great impression with friends and family in your lunches or dinners.

And who does not have in mind the romantic image of Lady and the Tramp when they are share under a starry sky a gorgeous plate of spaghetti with Italian meatballs?

As an Italian doc as I am, a clarification is a duty: most foreigners associate meatballs with the famous Spaghetti with Meatballs.

What I can tell you is that, in reality, Italians don’t eat Spaghetti with Meatballs at all, but rather in Italy restaurants menu not even contemplate that dish.

So, what I can recommend if you want to eat like the Italians, is to prepare a little more sauce and once ready, use it to make a pleasant “Scarpetta” with homemade bread or to season the pasta for the next day.

There are many versions of meatballs. For this recipe of Italian Meatballs in Tomato Sauce, I used two delicious variations.

The first as regards the sauce, which I like most in the Neapolitan style, decisive and pungent: I only used garlic instead of the classic carrot onion and celery base. Secondly, I loved the meatballs come out well in soft but at the same time lighter and diet, so instead of bread, I let Oat Flakes soak in milk and then I added them to the dough. I was amazed at the final effect! Oats give a crispness and lightness that I really appreciated.

Meatballs today are universally recognized as a delicacy that makes adults and children happy. I use to always include them in the weekly menu of my family.

And to think that in the past the meatballs were used as a pot to cook with scraps or leftovers and therefore considered a poor dish.

A very important feature while you prepare the dough is to measure out the ingredients so that your meatballs have the right texture, soft and juicy on the inside and slightly toasted crust.

To make this double consistency, my trick is to first brown the meatballs on all sides over medium-high heat, and only as soon as you see that the Maillard Reaction has taken place add the tomato sauce.

Another trick: if you want to adopt the Italian style don’t add Parsley or Oregano to the sauce, try to throw in few leaves of Fresh Basil to fire off after you have finished cooking instead, leaving the closed pan with a lid for 10 minutes before serving to let so that the aroma of basil sprinkles all the sauce.

Yield: 4 serves

Italian Meatballs in Tomato Sauce with Oat Flakes

Italian meatballs in tomato sauce

The Italian Meatballs in Tomato Sauce it's a greedy and tasty, that fill the heart beside the
stomach: small balls based on minced meat, milk, eggs and cheese, slowly cooked in tomato sauce, for this version embellished with crunchy oat flakes.

Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Additional Time 10 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes


  • 500 g semi-lean ground beef
  • 50 g parmesan
  • 1 egg
  • 50 ml milk
  • 60 g oat flakes
  • nutmeg
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 3 spoons of oil
  • 600 ml tomato sauce (use San Marzano ones)
  • 6 basil leaves


    1. First, soak the oat flakes in the milk for 15

    2. Pour the minced meat into a bowl, add the Parmesan,
    a teaspoon of salt and 1 egg and start mixing with a spoon.

    3. Drain the oats from the milk and add it to the dough while grating a good dose of nutmeg.

    4. At this point, check the consistency of the dough, the
    result must be smooth and slimy. If yours remains too dry, pour half the milk in which you had soaked the oats into the dough. Adjust with salt and pepper to your liking (I usually add 3 or 4 of chopped black pepper and, if need be, a bit more salt).

    5. Stir again using your hands to thicken the consistency of the dough, then take about 1 tablespoon of meat and put it in a palm and with the other hand form a ball of about 3 cm in diameter. Keep going until you finish the meat.

    6. Put a large pan on the stove with 3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil and fry the garlic cloves without the skin until they become golden. If you like the sauce to have an intense and strong taste, leave the garlic in the pan, otherwise, once it is golden brown, remove it.

    7. Put the stove on medium heat and lay the meatballs one by one and cook for two minutes on all sides to form a thin crust.

    8. Add the tomato sauce, season with salt and pepper and lower the heat.

    9. From this moment, cook the meatballs in the sauce over low heat for 30 minutes.

    10. When cooked, pour the washed basil leaves over the sauce, close with a lid and let stand for 10 minutes before serving.


To add an extra cheesy flavor, once done sprinkle meatballs with some grated parmesan.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 559Total Fat: 32gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 19gCholesterol: 170mgSodium: 1173mgCarbohydrates: 22gFiber: 4gSugar: 6gProtein: 45g


  1. this is seriously an amazing recipe!
    love the texture.
    yummy and can’t wait to try it in my home.
    thanks for sharing this awesome recipe.

  2. Tanya says:

    Looks delicious! I’ve been looking for a great meatball recipe so I can’t wait to try this one!

  3. This looks good! Can’t way to try it out with my boyfriend. <3 Thank you!

  4. Wow this looks absolutely mouthwatering. I love making my own meatballs from scratch so I will be saving this to try out for dinner tonight!

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