To stretch the ground beef, we use high-fiber bulgur and whole-wheat breadcrumbs in the meatballs, which are baked rather than fried.

Instructions

  1. To prepare meatballs: Combine bulgur and water in a small bowl. Let stand until the bulgur is tender and the liquid is absorbed, about 30 minutes.
  2.  
  3. Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat a rack with cooking spray and place it over a baking sheet lined with foil.
  4.  
  5. Combine ground beef, sausage, onion, egg whites, garlic, oregano, salt, pepper, breadcrumbs and the soaked bulgur in a large bowl; mix well. Form the mixture into 1-inch meatballs (about 24). Place the meatballs on the rack and bake for 25 minutes. Blot well with paper towel.
  6.  
  7. To prepare sauce & spaghetti: Put a large pot of lightly salted water on to boil. Bring sauce to a simmer in a Dutch oven. Add the meatballs to the sauce and simmer, covered, for 20 minutes. Stir in basil (or parsley).
  8.  
  9. Meanwhile, cook spaghetti (or linguine) until just tender, 8 to 10 minutes. Drain and transfer to a serving bowl. Top with the sauce and meatballs and serve with grated cheese.

 

Tips

Tip: To make fresh breadcrumbs: Trim crusts from firm sandwich bread. Tear the bread into pieces and process in a food processor until coarse crumbs form. One slice makes about 1/3 cup.
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