Meatballs – for the slow cooker

Serves 4-6 (makes 30-35 mini meatballs)

Don’t have time to finely dice an onion? Grate it on the big holes of a box grater. I’ve made this recipe with a variety of ground meats, including ground bison and ground turkey, and they all seem to work equally well. It’s easy enough to double the recipe to feed a crowd, and in that case you can use more than one kind of ground meat – for example, combine 1 pound of ground beef and 1 pound of ground turkey.


1 cup finely diced onion
1 pound ground beef, bison, or turkey
1/4 cup Italian-seasoned bread crumbs
1 whole egg, lightly beaten
1/4 cup grated parmesan
1 tablespoon worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 tablespoon italian seasoning
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

24 ounces of your favorite pasta sauce (I use Bertolli Marinara)


Preheat oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with foil and spray with non-stick spray.

In a large bowl, add all ingredients except pasta sauce. Mix together with your hands or a sturdy spoon until thoroughly combined. Shape 1 tablespoon sized meatballs and place them on the prepared baking sheet. (To keep them all a uniform size, use a measuring spoon or cookie scoop.)

Add sauce to slow cooker and set to low. Bake meatballs at 400°F for 5 minutes, then set oven to broil and cook for another 5 minutes. Remove meatballs from oven and add to slow cooker. (If sauce isn’t enough to cover meatballs at least 3/4 of the way, add a little water or chicken stock until it does.)

Cook on low for 4-6 hours. Serve on buns with provolone cheese for meatball sammies, or the tradition way over your favorite kind of pasta.

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