Spaghetti has always been one of my favorite meals, and it was one of the first things I ever learned to make on my own. My go-to recipe has always been a really easy version – ground beef and a jar of Prego poured over noodles. Some nights though, I want to go the more gourmet route. I had one of those nights last week, so I decided to spice things up with mozzarella stuffed meatballs, and a homemade marinara sauce. The end result was delicious, and absolutely worth the extra time it took to make it.
For the Mozzarella Stuffed Meatballs:
1 pound lean ground turkey
1/2 cup white onion, finely chopped
1/2 cup Panko breadcrumbs
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded
1/4 cup milk
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tbsp mustard
3 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp Tabasco sauce
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp garlic salt
2 mozzarella string cheese sticks
For the Marinara Sauce:
2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 cup white onion, chopped
2 tsp minced garlic
1 (6oz) can tomato paste
1/3 cup water
1 (28oz) can crushed tomatoes
1 tbsp sugar
1 tsp basil
1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
whole wheat spaghetti noodles
Parmesan cheese, shredded (for garnish)
In a large bowl, combine the ground turkey, egg, onion, breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, milk, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, garlic, Tabasco sauce, salt, pepper and garlic salt.
Mix together until thoroughly combined.
Cut the string cheese into bite-size pieces.
Use a 1/4 measuring cup to form the meatballs. Place a small dent in the center of the meatball, and put the chunk of mozzarella cheese inside.
Cover the cheese completely, to form a round ball. Place in a greased baking dish.
Bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes, until cooked through.
While the meatballs are in the oven, start on the sauce. Saute the onions and garlic in the olive oil until the onions are translucent.
Stir in the tomato paste and the water.
Add the tomatoes, sugar, basil, Italian seasoning, salt, and pepper.
Cover and simmer for 15-20 minutes.
Serve the meatballs and sauce over the spaghetti noodles, and enjoy!