Two minute meatballs

meatballs

Okay, so I cheated when I made dinner using this prepared Italian sausage meat as the base for meatballs, but you know what? These meatballs were pretty great tasting, held together beautifully, and gave my son a new version of his favourite pasta meal without causing me, his chief cook and bottle washer, any muss or fuss.

After the meat was browned, I added pasta sauce and sliced green olives to the pan and simmered the mixture for 20 minutes. I served the completed sauce over papparadelle noodles and it was a very good meal.

I’ll definitely buy this sausage meat product again to use to make pizza toppings or for making a meat sauce to spread between sheets of lasagna. I may use it for making meatballs again, too.

What grocery store short-cut products do you use to make dinnertime preparation easier? Do jars of minced ginger make you cringe or yell ‘ha-zaa!’? Will bought salad dressing cut it on a weeknight or do you start from scratch every time?

13 Responses to Two minute meatballs

  1. Rosa says:

    I generally make everything from scratch… The only short-cut product I buy is baked beans and we only eat those on rare occasions.

    Cheers,

    Rosa

  2. Cheryl A says:

    I’ve used that sausagee meat for meatballs too, but I do half sausage and half ground beef. It got my non-meatball eating brother-in-law to eat spaghetti and meatballs.

    Speaking of Italian… Our lazy meal in this house is Oliveri Sachettini filled with chicken, bacon, and pepperoni with a spicy red pepper sauce (jarred). Maybe not so healthy, but we only have it once a month or so. The Monster loves her ghosts, as we call them because of their shape.

  3. Rebecca says:

    What a great idea! And I hadn’t thought of using an ice cream scoop for meatballs, so I’ve gotten two great ideas from the same post. Huzzah!

    My favorite dinner shortcut is Sister Schubert’s frozen dinner rolls. Jeff “needs” to have bread with every meal, and I definitely don’t, so it’s nice (and economical) to be able to heat just one or two rolls at a time.

  4. Kitt says:

    You’ve seen my monkey bread, which is totally a supermarket cheat, but very worth it. Another worthwhile shortcut is buying bagged shredded cabbage to make hot Indian slaw. Sure, cabbage is way cheap, but my time isn’t.

  5. Amy says:

    Did you pan fry or bake your meatballs? I usually bake them to keep their shape but then they can sometimes be a bit dryer textured…

  6. danamccauley says:

    Amy: I pan-fried these ones until brown, drained off the fat and then added the sauce. The real cooking happened in the liquid.

  7. Cheryl says:

    I use jarred marinara, all the time. Canned beans (though I just bought some dried ones to soak, I’m doubtful I’ll convert), pre-grated mozzarella, jarred ginger for emergencies. (Is there such a thing as a ginger emergency?)

    Oh, and frozen pizza for babysitter nights for the kids.

  8. I try to make things from scratch but admit openly to using Thai Kitchen curry pastes. I also used tinned beans for some items (but dried beans for soups). I keep a jar of Classico pasta sauce on hand for emergencies and used dried pasta.

    I also have low-sodium chicken broth on hand. I can’t make enough homemade stock and run out of freezer room quickly.

    Hmmm. That’s quite a list. I’m not nearly as pure as I’d like to think.🙂

  9. Heather says:

    We have pasta about once a week, and as it is our crazy day, it’s nearly always sauce from a jar with frozen meatballs. I’ve found a nice mix of frozen veggies to add to the sauce. We eat chicken nuggets often too.

  10. What a cool trick!
    Short-cutsssssssss…. hmmm, I think I only use store bought marinara sauce as a base for other dishes and sometimes caneed chicken broth. But I like to make things from scratch. I find that bottled/canned/etc don’t taste as good af if I made them myself. Even if it’s from a fancy food store. I believe that anything home-made is always better even if you are a bad cook.

  11. Heather says:

    Okay, tried the meatballs last night…It was a HIT! Hubby took left overs for lunch today and was dissappointed to find that there were only two meatballs left in the pasta, he and my boys loved them! BTW I used mild sausage meat.

  12. Cheryl says:

    I’m making your sausage meatballs tonight! My kids are VERY excited.

  13. danamccauley says:

    Excellent – I hope the kids like them.

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