Slow Cooker Meatballs Recipe

Allison Ruth | Some the Wiser

Slow Cooker Meatballs with ground beef and lots of spices. This savory meal is super easy to make.

Slow Cooker Meatballs Photo

Though I can still hardly believe it, I am already in my third trimester of pregnancy. I’m only counting down the weeks and days now and the big day is approaching quickly. With the impending arrival of a fourth baby to my already busy house, I am taking meal planning very seriously these days. Both the freezer and my slow cooker will be my best friends over the next few months. These delicious and easy Slow Cooker Meatballs are at the top of my new mom menu plan.

Even without a new baby in the house, the slow cooker is a kitchen tool that I rely on often. Being able to pull dinner together first thing in the morning before the business of the day takes hold is always such a relief to me. With dinner simmering away in the slow cooker all day long, I am free to work, take care of kids, and run errands without fearing the 5:00 P.M. panic that hits when everyone is hungry and I haven’t set foot in the kitchen (or the grocery store) all day long.

Slow Cooker Meatballs Picture

These Slow Cooker Meatballs are the kind of easy, make-ahead meal that everyone needs in their recipe reserves. The prep work is minimal but the payoff is huge! The meatballs and sauce are excellent over rice, pasta, or on toasted bread for a hearty meatball sandwich. You can easily adapt them to your diet preferences by substituting lean ground turkey for all or part of the hamburger. Best of all, you can freeze any leftovers or double batches for later.

Having crossed the third trimester threshold, I have to admit I have my panicked moments where I question my ability to handle one more baby or one more meal. Can I really do this? Then I plant my feet firmly in the kitchen and whip up a batch of meatballs. Yes, I can do this, one meatball at a time. 

Slow Cooker Meatballs Image

Looking for more slow cooker inspiration to round out your meal plan? Katie's Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup recipe is just the ticket. Or maybe you'd like Shelly's Cheesy Jalapeño Popper Style Crockpot Pulled Chicken instead.

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Slow Cooker Meatballs Recipe

    4 Servings


  • 1 1/2 pounds Ground Beef
  • 1 cup Italian Style Bread Crumbs
  • 1 cup Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • 1 Egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup Fresh Parsley, chopped
  • 5-6 pinches Fennel Seed, divided between meatballs and sauce
  • 3 tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 1 large Onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup Boiling Water
  • 1/4 teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper
  • 1 6 ounce can Tomato Paste
  • 30 ounces Tomato Puree, 2 15 ounce cans
  • 2 tablespoons Oregano
  • 1 tablespoon Granulated Sugar
  • 3 tablespoons Fresh Basil, chopped
  • Salt and Pepper, to taste


  1. In a large bowl, mix the ground beef, bread crumbs, Parmesan, egg, parsley, and fennel.  Shape the mixture into balls, approximately the size of golf balls (using a cookie scoop works well).
  2. In a large skillet or Dutch oven over medium heat, add olive oil and sauté onion and garlic for about 5 minutes, or until onion is soft and golden.
  3. Stir in the tomato paste and sugar. Add the water and stir until well combined, about 1 to 2 minutes.
  4. Add the tomato puree, oregano, red pepper flakes, fennel, basil and stir.  Pour sauce into slow cooker. Place meatballs into the sauce mixture.
  5. Cook on Low for 6 to 8 hours.


Adapted from Dinner: A Love Story by Jenny Rosenstrach
Cooking Method:
Slow Cooker
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Related Recipes:
Slow Cooker Recipes, Family Meals and Snack Recipes, Easy Dinner Recipes, Easy Recipes, Ground Beef Recipes, Italian Recipes, Dinner Recipes
Recipe Yields:
4 servings
Prep Time:
Cook Time:
Total Time:
Related Post:
Author: Allison Ruth
Source: Adapted from Dinner: A Love Story by Jenny Rosenstrach
Recipe Yields: 4 servings
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 480 minutes
Total Time: 510 minutes

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size 4 meatballs
Servings Per Recipe 4

Amount Per Serving
Calories from Fat 281
Calories 693

% Daily Value*
Total Fat 35g
  Saturated Fat 5g
Sodium 602mg
Total Carbohydrate 36g
  Dietary Fiber 3g
  Sugars 14g
Protein 48g

* Percent Daily Value are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
** Nutrition Facts are estimated based on ingredients and data provided by Fat Secret. Please consult a doctor if you have special dietary needs.
Allison Ruth

About Allison

Allison is CEO, chief cook and bottle washer and more. She chronicles her adventures with three young girls and baby boy on Some the Wiser. We're honored to have her sharing her secrets to great Family Meals and Snacks too.

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