Hearty and full of flavour, this easy Italian meatball soup is the perfect comfort food for a chilly day. The rich tomato broth pairs beautifully with tender Italian-style meatballs to create an unforgettable soup the entire family will love.
It’s no secret I love comforting soups and stews. Living in Scotland means that I can pretty much enjoy a comforting bowl of goodness year-round. This easy Italian meatball soup is one of my favorite things to make when I’m torn between making a delicious soup or pasta (yet again!)
Making these hearty meatball soup in a rich tomato sauce means that I don’t have to choose. The combination of succulent Italian-style meatballs and pasta makes this soup incredibly satisfying, which means that you can serve it on its own.
However, you can transform dinner into a true feast by serving the meatball soup with a chunk of crusty bread. I sometimes make my trusty crispy focaccia to go with it.
For the meatballs
450 g (1 lb) ground beef (at least 15% fat)
2 medium garlic cloves, crushed
½ teaspoon dried oregano
½ teaspoon dried basil
½ teaspoon dried sage
½ teaspoon dried parsley
1 medium egg
25g (⅓ cup) grated Parmesan
30 g (1 ounce) breadcrumbs
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
For the soup
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
1 medium carrot, diced
2 celery stalks, diced
2 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 x 400 g (14 oz) can crushed tomatoes
1 litre (4 cups) beef stock
1 tablespoon dried oregano
150 g (1 ½ cup) elbow pasta (or another type of short pasta)
2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
25g (⅓ cup) grated Parmesan, plus extra for serving
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Preheat the oven to 190 degrees C (375 degrees F). Coat a baking sheet with nonstick spray.
Add the ground beef, garlic, herbs, egg, Parmesan, breadcrumbs, and salt and pepper in a large bowl. Stir well to combine. Add a dash of water if needed.
Using a scoop or a spoon, shape the mixture into 1 ½ inch meatballs. Arrange them on the prepared baking sheet. You should have a total of 25-30 meatballs. Spray the meatballs with oil spray and bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown.
Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large heavy pot or a Dutch oven and saute the onion, carrot, and celery for 7-8 minutes over medium heat.
Add the garlic and continue to cook for another minute until fragrant. Next, stir in the crushed tomatoes, beef stock, and oregano. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
Add the pasta and continue to simmer for 10-12 minutes until al dente. Transfer the baked meatballs to the pot and stir in the fresh parsley and Parmesan.
Season to taste and serve on its own or with some crusty bread.