meatballs in tomato sauce

The first product I used from my Ciao Gusto hamper was a jar of passata sauce. This is a staple in my kitchen cupboard and can be used in so many recipes. Cirio Passata Rustica is one of the products from the very well known brand in Italy which has been going since 1856 when Cirio, a young boy born to an illiterate family in Sardinia, travelled to Turin and started preserving tomatoes in tin cans. Cirio is all about tomatoes, their brand includes tinned plum tomatoes, chopped plum tomatoes, a variety of passata sauces, a tomato puree and lots more.

I often use the tinned tomatoes as bases for casseroles, soups and pot roasts whereas the passatas are perfect for pasta sauces, like Arrabbiata, Amatriciana and a classical ragú. This time however I had some fresh meatballs and I wanted a recipe that was suitable for all of the family, that means tasty but not too spicy for the little ones.

Cirio vintage postcard


Linguine with meatballs in tomato and sweet pepper sauce

Linguine with meatballs in tomato and sweet pepper sauce
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
A simple and delicious tomato and sweet pepper sauce to accompany tasty meatballs. Great for dinner, suitable for all of the family
Recipe type: Main meal
Cuisine: Italian
Serves: 4
  • 1 tray of 12 meatballs
  • olive oil for frying
  • 1 onion finely chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic finely chopped
  • 2 peppers diced
  • 1 jar of Cirio Passata Rustica
  • salt and pepper
  1. Heat some olive oil in a pan and lightly fry the meatballs until they are browed all over, scoop out the meatballs and place to one side.
  2. Add the onions, garlic and sweet peppers to the pan and gently fry until softened. Add the jar of Cirio Passata Rustica and stir the ingredients together.
  3. Return the meatballs to the pan, correct the seasoning, cover and simmer gently for 20 minutes until the meat is cooked through.
  4. In the meantime, bring to the boil a pan of salted water. Add the linguine and cook until al dente.
  5. Once cooked, drain and add to the meatballs sauce, mix well and serve.
  6. Sprinkle parmesan cheese over the top and cracked black pepper
A simple recipe to prepare and ready to serve in no time at all. All of the family enjoyed this and dad added extra freshly ground black pepper to add a little kick to it.

We served a glass of Santa Margherita’s Pinto Grigio with our meal

meatballs in tomato and sweet pepper sauce


Easy slow cooker meatballs recipeLooking for a delicious recipe that is easy to prepare, nutritious, that everyone will like and cooks all by itself? I give you an easy slow cooker recipe for meatballs based on buying a tray of 20 beef meatballs found in most supermarkets amongst the 3 x £10 range.

I also wanted to try something different to the usual tomato sauce so I devised one with gravy and carrots, you can also spot a few french beans in there because I had them to use up in the fridge so I put them in as well but not necessary to the recipe ;)

Easy Slow Cooker Meatballs in gravy

1 tray of meatballs
olive oil for frying
1 onion
5/6 large carrots
1 or 2 cloves of garlic
500 ml beef stock
1 tbsp tomato puree
salt and pepper

Fry off the meatballs in a drop of olive oil to colour on all sides and add to the slow cooker on high setting. Add the chopped onions to the same pan and sweat until soft and golden, add the chopped garlic for a minute. Add to the slow cooker

Peel and chop the carrots and add to the slow cooker

Make up 500ml of beef stock using a stock cube and add to the slow cooker, squeeze over the tomato puree and season, stir well so all ingredients are even and cook on high for 5 hours.

We served ours with mash potato this time but they would be equally delicious with pasta

Easy slow cooker meatballs recipe

This recipe is incredibly versatile as you can throw in all sorts of vegetables – leeks, mushrooms, peas, sweetcorn and so on. Adapt the meatballs to your own taste so long as they have a little stock to cook in you’ll be fine.

Remember the meatballs will give off some fat whilst they cook I check every couple of hours and skim off the top but this can be done at the end too.

I’m adding this recipe to Mediocre Mums slow cooker link up on Sunday where you can find loads more recipes to choose from and get the most out of your slow cooker. click on the badge below ;)