Meatballs with Pesto Spaghetti; more spring flowers

These meatballs were an unintentional experiment.

We were planning on having burgers….

As happened so often this spring the weather turned and mon mari decided that he would rather not grill burgers in the rain.

That was fine as I was no longer in the mood for eating burgers, as it was cold, damp and windy.

Meatballs seemed a better idea.

Plus I would have to boil water for the pasta which would help heat the kitchen !

The only problem was that I was out of eggs.

Amazingly, I was able to make meatballs without the egg (my mother would be appalled that I even considered it) and neither one of us noticed a difference.

I added the spaghetti to the sauce in the skillet to thicken it rather than using a thickening agent. It just seemed like a better plan. Try to time the pasta to be almost done when the meatballs are done so it can be drained and added right to the skillet. It will absorb more of the sauce.

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Meatballs with Pesto Spaghetti

Easy meatballs made without eggs with spaghetti finished in the sauce for a flavorful main course

  • Author: Katie Zeller
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 2 servings 1x
  • Category: Pasta
  • Cuisine: American


  • 12oz (360gr) ground beef
  • 3 tbs bread crumbs
  • 1 tbs Dijon-style mustard
  • 1 tbs ketchup
  • 1 tbs red wine
  • 1 tsp basil
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 2/3 cup (6oz, 180ml) chicken stock
  • 4 tbs pesto sauce
  • 4oz, (125gr) spaghetti


  • Cook pasta according to package directions, but drain when there is a minute left of cooking time
  • In a large bowl mix bread crumbs, mustard, ketchup, wine, herbs and paprika.
  • Add beef and mix well.
  • Form into meatballs, about 1.5″ (5cm) in diameter; you should get 16.
  • Heat stock in a large skillet over medium heat. It should be at least 1/4″ deep. Add more if needed. 
  • Drop the meatballs in carefully, trying to keep them separate.
  • Cover and simmer until meatballs are done, about 15 minutes.  Stir once or twice.
  • Add pesto, stirring gently to combine.
  • Add pasta and stir well. Simmer for 1 minute, or until sauce thickens a bit.
  • Remove from heat, and serve.


Cooking the pasta until almost, but not quite done allows it to finish in the sauce, thickening the sauce and adding flavor to the pasts.

Keywords: pesto spaghetti, meatballs

Meatballs with Pesto Spaghetti

As long as I am still complaining about our spring…. There were some positive results.

My peonies are lovely – and more buds than usual as they didn’t get accidentally mowed down:

Our roses are the most prolific they have ever been.

The red ones for gorgeous:

But they have no scent.

The pink roses have a wonderful scent.

And today it was windy and rainy…..

I’m glad I enjoyed them while they were at their peak.

5 thoughts on “Meatballs with Pesto Spaghetti; more spring flowers”

  1. I always add a splash of the pasta water to whatever I’ve made. It just makes the sauces so much smoother and the sauces seem to stick to the pasta better. I’m growing basil so hoping to make fresh pesto with it though no pine nuts.

    I’ve had two good days this week. The rest have once again been rainy and miserable. It’s miserable today. Still somewhat foggy at noon. But with all the rain, my plants are thriving. I’ve not lost anymore cuke leaves so you must have been right about the slugs. I think I’ll buy just one more plant to replace the eaten one. I inherited an onion set from Thing 1. She just had way too many, so I planted those as well. We’ll see if they grow. Hope so!

    • We had high winds and rain yesterday…. Had it been in another month when the plants are bigger I’m sure I would have lost a lot. All the damp just makes the slugs move around more lol

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