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Baked Spaghetti and Meatballs

baked spaghetti and meatballs topped with cheese on a white plate
Made in the oven and full of the best Italian flavors, this baked spaghetti and meatballs is so easy to make and with satisfying results.
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Table of Contents
  1. BAKED SPAGHETTI AND MEATBALLS INGREDIENTS
  2. HOW TO MAKE THIS BAKED SPAGHETTI AND MEATBALLS RECIPE
  3. HOW TO SERVE
  4. STORAGE
  5. FAQ
  6. MORE RECIPES YOU'LL LOVE
  7. JUMP TO RECIPE

Baked spaghetti and meatballs is an easy casserole, made in the oven and full of the best Italian flavors. Spaghetti noodles and homemade meatballs are smothered in sauce and coated with gooey, melted cheese. All this combined makes this simple baked spaghetti and meatballs recipe insanely delicious.

Nothing completes a spaghetti dish like cheesy, garlic bread. Sneak a vegetable in with your bread by using our Cauliflower Breadstick recipe. This Cheesy Pull-Apart Bread and Garlic Bread are two other delicious options. They are awesome to dip into the pasta sauce from your baked spaghetti and meatballs.

A pizza sitting on top of a paper plate, with Meatball and Spaghetti

MORE PASTA RECIPES
Creamy Garlic Pasta | Elbow Macaroni Pasta Salad


BAKED SPAGHETTI AND MEATBALLS INGREDIENTS

Meatball and Spaghetti

You will need:

For the Meatballs

  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 pound Italian ground pork
  • ½ cup Italian breadcrumbs
  • ¼ cup whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 1 tablespoons dried parsley
  • 1 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten

For the Pasta

  • 8 ounces spaghetti noodles, cooked per package directions
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ¾ cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • ¼ cup parmesan cheese, shredded
  • 1 tablespoon fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • ⅛ teaspoon black pepper
  • 32 ounces of your favorite red pasta sauce

For the Casserole Toppings

  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • ¼ cup Parmesan cheese, shredded
  • 1 tablespoon fresh parsley, finely chopped

SUBSTITUTIONS AND ADDITIONS

MEATBALLS: If you prefer not to make your own homemade meatballs, you can use store-bought frozen meatballs in this recipe. Just make sure to completely thaw them before using them in your casserole. Likewise, you can freeze your homemade meatballs and thaw them out to use them at a later date.

PASTA: Any type of noodles would work for this recipe. If you prefer to use smaller, bite-sized noodles in place of the long spaghetti noodles, I would recommend penne or rotini. If you don’t have spaghetti noodles but would like to stick with a long noodle, you could use angel hair, fettuccine, or linguine.

SAUCE: Any red sauce will work to make baked spaghetti and meatballs. For a fun twist on this recipe, you could also use a pink (rosé) sauce that combines white and red sauce. You could also opt to use a white sauce if you prefer!

If you would like to make your own tomato sauce, you could try our homemade pasta sauce recipe.

HOW TO MAKE THIS BAKED SPAGHETTI AND MEATBALLS RECIPE

STEP ONE: Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and set aside.

STEP TWO: In a large bowl, combine ground beef, ground pork, Italian breadcrumbs, whole milk, minced garlic, Italian seasonings, onion powder, dried parsley, Parmesan cheese, salt, pepper, and lightly beaten eggs. Using your hands, mix all ingredients in the bowl until just combined, being careful not to overmix the meat.

baked spaghetti and meatballs process shot

STEP THREE: Use a small scoop to form small meatballs, or a large scoop to form large meatballs. A small scoop will make about 34 meatballs, and a larger ice cream scoop will form about 17 meatballs. You can also use your hands!

PRO TIP: An ice cream scoop works well but using your hands to form the meatballs will give you the best results.

STEP FOUR: Place the meatballs on the foil-lined baking sheet and place them in the oven. Cook at 400°F for 18-20 minutes if making small meatballs, 25 minutes if making large meatballs. They should be cooked through at this point and browned on the top. Remove from the oven and set aside.

STEP FIVE: In a large pot of water, cook spaghetti per package directions until pasta is al dente. Drain water and add cooked pasta noodles back to the pot. Drizzle olive oil over noodles and toss to coat. Add ¾ cup mozzarella, ¼ cup parmesan cheese, 1 tbsp fresh parsley, and ⅛ tsp ground black pepper. Toss pasta to coat with cheese and seasonings.

PRO TIP: Al dente is the ideal consistency for pasta. The pasta will be tender and will still have a slightly firm texture when you bite into it.

STEP SIX: Turn the heat down on your oven to 375°F. Spray a 9×13 baking dish with cooking spray. Add the noodle mixture to the bottom of the baking dish.

STEP SEVEN: Remove meatballs from the baking sheet and place them on top of the noodle mixture. Nestle each meatball down in the noodles so that only the top half is sticking out.

baked spaghetti and meatballs steps of placing meatballs in pasta in a white pan

STEP EIGHT: Add 32 ounces of your favorite pasta sauce to the top of the casserole. Use a fork to kind of spread out the noodles in-between the meatballs so the sauce can fall down in the noodles.

baked spaghetti and meatballs steps of pasta sauce being spread into meatball pasta in a white pan

STEP NINE: Cover the casserole and place in the oven at 375°F. Cook for 20 minutes. Remove foil and sprinkle remaining cheeses (1 ¼ cup total) over the top of the casserole.

STEP TEN: Place back in the oven at 375°F and continue to cook for 15 minutes or until cheese is melted and sides are bubbling.

PRO TIP: If you want to brown your cheese slightly, you can turn your broiler on for the last minute of melting the cheese. Make sure to keep a close eye on it so it doesn’t burn.

HOW TO SERVE

This delicious casserole is the perfect comfort food. Add garlic bread or dinner rolls and a caesar salad on the side for a complete meal. And of course, an extra sprinkle of tangy parmesan cheese is never a bad idea. What about sticking with the Italian theme and adding our easy tiramisu recipe for dessert?

STORAGE

IN THE FRIDGE: Store leftover baked spaghetti and meatballs in an airtight container in the fridge if you plan to eat it within a few days.

IN THE FREEZER: This casserole also makes for a great freezer meal. Place the airtight container in the freezer for up to 3 months and allow it to thaw out completely before reheating it in the oven. You can also store any leftover meatballs in the freezer. They are easy to thaw out and reheat in a casserole or put on top of spaghetti when you are ready to use them at a later date. Simply store them sealed tight in a Ziploc freezer bag.

overhead shot of baked spaghetti and meatballs topped with cheese on a plate

Baked spaghetti and meatballs is an easy casserole with classic flavors that you love in a pasta dish. Spaghetti noodles and homemade meatballs are swimming in pasta sauce and coated with a delicious cheese blend. This is a simple oven-baked dish for your next family dinner night.

FAQ

How do I know when my pasta is al dente?

To test your pasta for al dente, take a bite of the pasta a minute or two before the package instructions indicate it should be done. When you bite into it, and your teeth feel some resistance, but the pasta is still tender, your pasta is al dente.

Can I freeze the meatballs and add them to the casserole later?

You can prepare the meatballs ahead of time and freeze them. Thaw them out and add them to your casserole for a quicker prep time.

Can I use a different type of pasta?

You could use a small, bite-size pasta such as penne or rotini or, if you want to stick with long pasta, you could use fettuccine or linguine.

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baked spaghetti and meatballs topped with cheese on a white plate

Baked Spaghetti and Meatballs

5 from 1 vote
Made in the oven and full of the best Italian flavors, this baked spaghetti and meatballs is so easy to make and with satisfying results.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 25 minutes
Servings 6

Ingredients
  

  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 pound Italian ground pork
  • 1/2 cup Italian breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 cup whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon dried parsley
  • 1 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten

Pasta Ingredients

  • 8 ounces spaghetti noodles, cooked per package directions
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3/4 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded
  • 1 tablespoon fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 32 ounces of your favorite red pasta sauce

Casserole Topping

  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded
  • 1 tablespoon fresh parsley, finely chopped

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil and set aside.
  • In a large mixing bowl combine ground beef, ground pork, Italian breadcrumbs, whole milk, minced garlic, Italian seasonings, onion powder, dried parsley, Parmesan cheese, salt, pepper, and lightly beaten eggs. Using your hands mix all ingredients in the bowl until just combined, being careful not to over mix the meat.
  • Use a small scoop to form small meatballs, or a large scoop to form large meatballs.
  • Place the meatballs on the foil lined baking sheet and place in the oven. Cook at 400°F for 18-20 minutes if making small meatballs, 25 minutes if making large meatballs. They should be cooked through at this point and browned on the top. Remove from the oven and set aside.
  • Cook spaghetti per package directions. Drain water and add noodles back to the pot. Drizzle olive oil over noodles and toss to coat. Add ¾ cup mozzarella, ¼ cup Parmesan cheese, 1 tbsp fresh parsley, and ⅛ tsp ground black pepper. Toss pasta to coat with cheese and seasonings.
  • Turn the heat down on your oven to 375°F. Spray a 9×13 baking dish with cooking spray. Add noodle mixture to the bottom of the baking dish.
  • Remove meatballs from the baking sheet and place them on top of the noodle mixture. Nestle each meatball down in the noodles so that only the top half is sticking out.
  • Add 32 ounces of your favorite pasta sauce to the top of the casserole. Use a fork to kind of spread out the noodles in-between the meatballs so the sauce can fall down in the noodles.
  • Cover the casserole and place in the oven at 375°F. Cook for 20 minutes. Remove foil and sprinkle remaining cheeses (1 ¼ cup total) over the top of the casserole.
  • Place back in the oven at 375°F and continue to cook for 15 minutes or until cheese is melted and the sides are bubbling.

Video

Notes

TIP: If you have leftover meatballs from this recipe you can freeze them. They are easy to thaw out and reheat in a casserole when you are ready to use them at a later date.
 
TIP: An ice cream scoop works well but using your hands to form the meatballs will give you the best results.
 
TIP: Al dente is the ideal consistency for pasta. The pasta will be tender and will still have a slightly firm texture when you bite into it.
 
TIP: If you want to brown your cheese slightly, you can turn your broiler on for the last minute of melting the cheese. Make sure to keep a close eye on it so it doesn’t burn.

Nutrition

Calories: 746kcal | Carbohydrates: 45g | Protein: 54g | Fat: 38g | Saturated Fat: 17g | Cholesterol: 196mg | Sodium: 1814mg | Potassium: 1054mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 1113IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 533mg | Iron: 6mg
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Proudly Prepared by the Spaceships Kitchen

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