Mozzarella Stuffed Meatballs (in Homemade Tomato Sauce) Recipe


  • 2 pounds ground beef or turkey
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil (if using turkey)
  • 1/2 onion finely chopped
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup Panko bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup fresh grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 2 tablespoons fresh basil (or 1 teaspoon dried basil)
  • 2 teaspoons fresh ground black pepper
  • 3/4 pound fresh mozzarella cut into small cubes
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 28 oz canned whole tomatoes with juice
  • 28 oz canned diced tomatoes with juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon white sugar
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 6 oz tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoons fresh parsley
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 lemon (for zest only)


  1. Using a veggie peeler, peel off two very thin pieces of lemon zest making sure only to get the yellow part (not the white).

  2. Heat olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add onion & garlic and cook until soft, about 4 minutes. Add remaining sauce ingredients. Reduce heat to low, cover and let simmer 1 hour.

  1. Preheat oven to 375.

  2. Cut mozzarella into 24 small squares, set aside.

  3. Mix together turkey or beef, olive oil (if using turkey) onion, egg, panko bread crumbs, parmesan cheese, parsley, basil, and pepper. Mix just until combined (over mixing will create tough meatballs).

  4. Divide meat into 24 even pieces. Wrap each piece around a piece of cheese. Roll into a ball ensuring all of the cheese is completely covered by the turkey mixture.

  5. Place on a pan lined with parchment paper. Bake 30 minutes (a little of the cheese may leak out of some of the meatballs, that’s ok, there will still be more inside!)

  6. Remove meatballs from the oven, stir into the sauce and let simmer an additional 20 minutes.

  7. Serve on pasta.

    Nutrition Facts

Calories: 128

Fat: 7g

Saturated Fat: 3g

Cholesterol: 41mg

Sodium: 202mg

Potassium: 217mg

Carbohydrates: 4g

Fiber: 1g

Sugar: 1g

Protein: 14g

Vitamin A: 265%

Vitamin C: 7.3%

Calcium: 116%

Iron: 1%

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