Italian Essentials: Meatballs & Italian Sausages

Andy Anderson !


This is a recipe that my Aunt Josephine use to dish up when the weather began to turn cold.

When I would come over to visit, I always knew what we were going to have for dinner, because the smell of those meatballs and sausages slowly cooking in a spicy tomato sauce was absolute heaven.

Unfortunately, Aunt Josephine passed away before I got this recipe, so I came up with one of my own. And when I begin cooking it on a cool Autumn day, and those divine smells begin filling the house, I smile, and think of Aunt Joe.

So, you ready… Let’s get into the kitchen.


★★★★★ 1 vote

15 Min
35 Min
Stove Top




  • 2 Tbsp
    grapeseed oil, for sautéing
  • 6 - 8
    homemade meatballs, recipe recommendation to follow
  • 3 large
    italian sausages, mild or hot, your choice

  • 1 Tbsp
    sweet butter, unsalted
  • 1/2 medium
    yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 1 clove
    garlic, minced
  • 1/4 c
    chicken stock, not broth
  • 1/4 c
    dry white wine
  • 14 oz
    crushed tomatoes, canned variety
  • 1 Tbsp
    white, or apple cider vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp
    tomato paste
  • 1/4 tsp
    ground cumin
  • 1 tsp
    dried basil
  • 1 tsp
    dried oregano
  • ·
    salt, kosher variety, to taste
  • ·
    black pepper, freshly ground, to taste

  • ·
    pasta, your choice
  • ·
    parmesan cheese, freshly grated, for garnish
  • ·
    crusty bread

How to Make Italian Essentials: Meatballs & Italian Sausages


  2. Gather your Ingredients (mise en place).
  3. Recipe Recommendation:
    If you are looking for a good meatball recipe, look no further. This recipe was my Aunt Josephine’s:
    Delicious Beef & Pork Meatballs
  4. Tomato Recommendation:
    Some of my favorite canned tomatoes are: San Marzano, Crushed Peeled Tomatoes. However, if you are looking for a good canned tomato at a better price point, then I would recommend Hunt's brand.
  5. Add the oil to a large skillet over medium to medium-high heat.
  6. When it begins to shimmer, add the meatballs, and cook until browned all over, about 6 – 8 minutes.
  7. Remove from the skillet, and reserve.
  8. Prick the sausages with a fork, and brown them in the same skillet, about 4 – 6 minutes.
  9. Chef’s Note: If you wish, you can remove the casings from the sausages before cooking. That is what I do.
  10. Remove them, cut into bite-sized pieces, and reserve with the meatballs.
  11. Add the chopped onions to the pan, and cook until softened, about 3 – 5 minutes.
  12. Add the garlic, and stir until fragrant, about 60 seconds.
  13. Reduce the heat to medium-low, deglaze the pan with the chicken stock, and wine, and then simmer for 5 minutes
  14. Add the tomatoes, tomato paste, vinegar, cumin, basil, and oregano, and then season with a bit of salt and pepper.
  15. Bring the pan back up to a simmer, not a boil, and cook for 5 - 8 minutes.
  16. Chef’s Tip: Recheck the seasoning.
  17. Return the meatballs, and the sausage to the pan.
  18. Cover, and lightly simmer for 15 – 20 minutes.
  19. Chef’s Note: If you are using fresh tomatoes, add 20 minutes to the simmering time.
  20. Remove the lid, and simmer for an additional 5 minutes.
  22. Spoon over a plate of steaming pasta, sprinkle with some parmesan (freshly grated, of course), and don’t forget some nice crusty bread. Enjoy.
  23. Keep the faith, and keep cooking.

Printable Recipe Card

About Italian Essentials: Meatballs & Italian Sausages

Course/Dish: Beef
Main Ingredient: Beef
Regional Style: Italian

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