Spaghetti and meatballs is one of my children’s absolute favorite meals. They would eat it every day if I let them. This winter I am trying to introduce more soups into their diet, so I recently made their favorite meal into a soup version. It still contains all the elements of their favorite dinner, but the sauce is a broth and their favorite meatballs are miniaturized for easier soup handling.
My little experiment turned out to be a big hit. To them, it still tasted a lot like spaghetti and meatballs. The broth was full of bright tomato flavor with a dash of Parmesan and basil, the spaghetti noodles were still completely present — albeit broken into smaller pieces for slurping— and the meatballs were completely the same. It turned out to be a great riff on a family favorite. It will be a keeper this winter for sure!
Spaghetti and Meatball Soup
Makes: 8 cups
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 cup yellow onion, finely chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 1 pinch red pepper flakes
- 1/4 cup white wine
- 2 (28-ounce) cans whole tomatoes in juice
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 2 tablespoons dried basil
- Salt and pepper (to taste)
- Mini meatballs (recipe below)
- 1/2 pound spaghetti, broken into 3-inch strands
- In a large pot over medium heat warm the olive oil. Add the onions and stir until softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in the garlic and pepper flakes, cook for 1 minute.
- Pour in the white wine and allow it to simmer until it is completely evaporated. Then add the tomatoes, chicken broth, basil, salt, and pepper.
- Bring the soup to a boil for 1 minute, then reduce the heat and allow it to simmer for 10 minutes.
- Working carefully, use an immersion (or regular) blender to purée the soup until completely smooth. Return it to the pot to simmer over medium heat.
- Add the meatballs and spaghetti to the soup, and cook both for 20 minutes, or until the soup has thickened and the pasta is cooked through. Serve.
- 1/3 pound ground beef
- 1/3 pound ground pork
- 1/3 pound ground veal
- 2 slices of white bread soaked in 1/3 cup milk
- 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon parsley, finely chopped
- 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
- Place all of the ingredients in a large glass bowl and mix well with clean hands.
- Once everything is combined, form small meatballs, about 1/2 inch in diameter.
- Place a large skillet over medium heat. Brown the meatballs all over, about 5 minutes, to keep in their juices. Transfer the browned meatballs to the soup, per above recipe.