I don't know what it is lately, but I have been AGGRESSIVELY craving spaghetti. No other pasta will do - if I can't twirl it around my fork and spray sauce everywhere while trying to eat it, I don't want it. Unfortunately, a pasta craving of any kind is not exactly in line with the healthy eating kick I'm desperately trying to get myself on, so when the craving hit yet again this week, I turned to one of my favorite food blogs, Skinnytaste, to see what I could do about it. Using her Skinny Italian Turkey Meatballs for inspiration, I threw together a bunch of stuff from my pantry and fridge and came up with my new favorite spaghetti and meatballs recipe - lightened up! While you can skip the browning step and just throw your meatballs directly in the sauce like she does, I prefer to brown the meatballs first to bring out more flavor and give the meatballs a better consistency. If you do skip browning and throw them right in the sauce, increase the cooking time to 20 minutes. Up to you!
Spaghetti and Turkey Meatballs
Adapted from Skinnytaste
- 1 lb ground turkey breast
- 1/4 cup panko breadcrumbs
- 1/4 cup grated parmesan
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
- salt and pepper to taste
- 3 teaspoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 diced onion
- 2 28 oz cans diced tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 12 oz whole wheat spaghetti, cooked
Combine first 6 ingredients (through salt and pepper to taste) in a bowl and mix together. In a large pot, sautee garlic and onion in 1 teaspoon olive oil until soft. Add diced tomatoes, oregano, and additional salt and pepper to taste and cover, bringing to a simmer.
In another pan, heat 1 teaspoon of olive oil over low/medium heat. Form meatball mixture into small meatballs (around the size of a ping pong or golf ball). Add half the meatballs to the pan, using a large spoon to turn meatballs after a minute on each side. The meatballs may stick to the pan a bit, so be careful. Brown all sides and return to plate. Add last teaspoon of olive oil and remaining meatballs, repeating the browning step.
Add all meatballs to sauce, making sure the meatballs are fully covered. Continue to simmer, covered, for 10 minutes, to allow meatballs to fully cook through. Serve meatballs and sauce over spaghetti and enjoy!