Italian Meatballs in Sauce (Moose, Pork & Beef)

deb baldwin


I got this recipe off of Williams-Sonoma. I did very little tweaking, because this is a classic.
I found out I love, love meatballs.
I didn't get a photo because they where eaten up to fast.
"I raise my hand, because I am guilty"

Made this last night..They are good. I used a sauce out of a jar and added more italian seasoning and minced garlic..Yumm


★★★★★ 2 votes

20 Min
1 Hr
Stove Top



  • 3 or 4 slice
    coarse bread, crumbled (1 1/2 cups)
  • 1/2 c
  • 1 lb
    ground or chopped moose
  • 1 lb
    italian sausage (bulk or casings removed)
  • 2
    eggs, slightly beaten
  • 1 c
    parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1/4 c
    parsley flakes
  • 1
    garlic clove, minced
  • 1 1/2 tsp
    sea salt or regular salt
  • ·
    pepper to taste
  • 2 Tbsp
    olive oil

  • 1
    small onion, choped
  • 1
    garlic clove, minced
  • 2 can(s)
    (28 oz ea) plum tomatoes, crushed with juice
  • ·
    salt and pepper to taste
  • ·
    italian seasoning, to taste
  • 2 or 3
    fresh basil leaves, torn into small pc if you have it

How to Make Italian Meatballs in Sauce (Moose, Pork & Beef)


  1. To make meatballs, in a small bowl, mix the crumbled bread and milk and let stand for 10 mininutes. (to much bread crumbs for me so I will use a little less next time. Do not use a soft bread, as it will be more pastey.)
  2. Take about 1 pound of moose (or venison).
    Leave semi-frozen and cut into 1/2" pieces..Put in food processer (semi-frozen) and chop fine. If meat thaws to fast, set on (wax paper) cookie sheet and put in freezer for 30 minutes.
  3. In a large bowl, combine moose, italian sausage, eggs, cheese, parsley, garlic, salt and pepper.
    Squeeze the bread with your hands to remove the excess moisture and then discard the liguid (milk). Add the bread to the meat mixture and mix gentley until combined.
  4. Use an ice cream scoop or your damp hands and form meat balls into 2" balls. Use a genteltouch, handling the meat mixture lightly. If you pack or squeeze the meatballs, they can become tough and dry. (they are also hard to fry, but worth it)
    As the balls are made, set them aside on a large plate or tray.
  5. In a fry pan large enough to hold all the meatballs in a single layer, warm the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the meatballs and cook, turning them occasionally, until crisp and brown on all sides, about 15 to 20 minutes. Transfer the meatballs to a plate and drain off all but 2 Tbs. of fat from pan.
  6. SAUCE: To make sauce, return the pan to medium heat, add the onion, and saute'. add the crushed tomatoes and juice. Stir well and deglaze the pan. Season with salt and pepper to taste and bring to a simmer.
    (I added italian seasoning as it was just to tomato-ee for me.)Cook until the sauce thickens, about 20 minutes..Stir in Basil.
  7. Return meatballs to pan with sauce and cook, basting them often with the sauce, until hot and cooked through (10 min.) Serves 6 to 8.
  8. These meatballs can be prepared up to 2 months in advance. So I divided the meatballs (for 2 dinners) and placed the raw meatballs on a cookie sheet that had parchment or wax paper on it. After about 2 hours, transfer them to an airtaight container..Before cooking them, defrost in refrigerator over night.(I let the meatballs set in the freezer overnight and used my food saver to vaccum pack.)I also cooked all the meatballs and then froze the meatballs, as above, and sealed.
  9. You can use your own homemade sauce that you enjoy or bottled of marinara sauce if in a pinch.

    Cooks Note: I also added 1 pound of hamburger to this meat mixture and it made 3 batches of meatballs (12 each).
    Cook in sauce and serve over pasta.

Printable Recipe Card

About Italian Meatballs in Sauce (Moose, Pork & Beef)

Main Ingredient: Wild Game
Regional Style: Italian

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