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Spicy Italian Meatballs

Spicy Italian MeatballsJuicy meatballs are precisely what your next party needs. This slow cooker recipe for the saucy favorite features spicy Italian sausage and a tangy balsamic-tomato sauce.

Recipe Ingredients:

1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/2 cup fine dry bread crumbs
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
1/4 cup finely chopped bottled pepperoncini salad peppers
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning, crushed
1 clove garlic, minced
1 pound lean ground beef
1 pound bulk Italian sausage
1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
1/2 cup finely chopped onion (1 medium)
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano, crushed
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper

Cooking Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C).
  2. In a large bowl combine egg, bread crumbs, 1/4 cup onion, pepperoncini peppers, Italian seasoning, and the 1 clove garlic; mix well. Add ground beef and sausage; mix gently until combined. Shape mixture into twenty-four 2-inch meatballs. Place meatballs in a 15x10x1-inch baking pan. Bake for 30 minutes; drain well.
  3. Meanwhile, in a 4 to 5-quart slow cooker combine crushed tomatoes, 1/2 cup onion, the vinegar, 2 cloves garlic, oregano, and crushed red pepper. Add baked meatballs to slow cooker; stir gently to coat.
  4. Cover and cook on low-heat setting for 4 to 6 hours or on high-heat setting for 2 to 3 hours. Skim fat from sauce before serving.

Makes 24 meatballs.

Tip: Meatballs can be served on their own, over hot cooked pasta, or in buns for meatball sandwiches.

Nutritional Information Per Serving (1/24 of recipe): 133 kcal cal., 9 g fat (3 g sat. fat, 1 g polyunsaturated fat, 4 g monounsatured fat), 36 mg chol., 237 mg sodium, 5 g carb., 1 g fiber, 1 g sugar, 7 g pro.

Recipe provided by Better Homes and Gardens - BHG.com a member of the Home and Family Network for the best of cooking, gardening, decorating and more. ©2003 Meredith Corporation. All Rights Reserved.