If you’ve followed my blog at all before now, you may know that I hate washing dishes. I find that the most tedious part about being a food blogger and the mom of a large family. My husband is great about helping with dishes but with our big family, a small apartment size dishwasher, and recipe testing, the dishes need to be done several times a day. That is why one pot meals are my favorite. Being able to cook an entire dinner in one cooking vessel is essential to our family life. After dinner, we prefer to play board games, watch a movie together, or just chat about our days. No one wants to be in the kitchen for hours washing the dinner dishes. My big kids are now old enough that they can help with the dishes (such a blessing!) but they tend to do a little grumbling and complaining if mom uses every pot in the pantry.
I was more than happy to come up with an easy 30 minute, 5-ingredient, easy meatballs one pot meal for Bertolli and Carando. This is a dish I plan to make time and time again for my family. The Bertolli Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil and Bertolli Tomato & Basil Pasta Sauce give this dish a rich flavor. You can purchase these products at your local Ahold store. I shopped for mine at Stop & Shop (you can visit their coupon page for savings). The meatballs are in the fresh meat section, the pasta sauce is in the pasta aisle, and the olive oil is with the other oils.
I make meatballs from scratch quite often but being able to just open the package and dump them in the pan was so, so nice. I was thrilled to find out these Carando Italian Style Meatballs are grain and gluten-free. They are pretty much just pork, cheese, and seasonings. The perfect low carb grab and cook entree. Most other store-bought meatballs I have looked at are full of fillers like breadcrumbs.
Visit this page for more info & recipe inspiration.
Using a mandoline to thinly and evenly slice the zucchini is a real time saver. The handheld mandolin I use is under $20 and an essential part of my kitchen. This way the zucchini will all cook evenly. If you have a spiralizer, you can also make this dish with zucchini noodles.
The back of the Carando Italian Meatball package gives baking instructions for the meatballs but I prefer to pan cook them so they get a nice golden crust. Every couple minutes I just go give the pan a shake so they roll over to a new side.
Once the meatballs are cooked, you move them to the serving dish and then cook the zucchini and make the sauce in the same frying pan. No need to wash in between. This saves on time and dirty dishes.
I consider the mascarpone cheese the secret ingredient in this recipe. Combined with the Bertolli Tomato & Basil Pasta Sauce it creates a light pink sauce with a delicate flavor. My family kept exclaiming over how good the sauce was. I thought about licking my plate clean. I didn’t, but I was definitely tempted.
Easy Meatballs with Zucchini & Mascarpone
2 tbsp Bertolli Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 packs of Carando Italian Meatballs (16 oz each)
1 cup Bertolli Tomato & Basil Pasta Sauce
3 medium zucchini, thinly sliced
8 oz mascarpone cheese
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
Drizzle the olive oil in a large frying pan. Add the meatballs. Cook on high, stirring frequently until golden brown, about 10 minutes.
Reduce the heat to low, add the pasta sauce, and cover. Cook for an additional 10 minutes or until the meatballs are fully cooked and register 160 degrees on a meat thermometer.
Remove the meatballs from the frying pan and place in a large serving bowl.
Add the zucchini. Cover and cook for 3-4 minutes or until the zucchini are softened. Add the mascarpone, salt, and pepper, and stir gently until the cheese melts and a creamy sauce forms. Pour over the easy meatballs and gently combine. Serve immediately.
- 2 tbsp Bertolli Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 2 packs of Carando Italian Meatballs 16 oz each
- 1 cup Bertolli Tomato & Basil Pasta Sauce
- 3 medium zucchini thinly sliced
- 8 oz mascarpone cheese
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- Drizzle the olive oil in a large frying pan. Add the meatballs. Cook on high, stirring frequently until golden brown, about 10 minutes.
- Reduce the heat to low, add the pasta sauce, and cover. Cook for an additional 10 minutes or until the meatballs are fully cooked and register 160 degrees on a meat thermometer.
- Remove the meatballs from the frying pan and place in a large serving bowl.
- Add the zucchini. Cover and cook for 3-4 minutes or until the zucchini are softened. Add the mascarpone, salt, and pepper, and stir gently until the cheese melts and a creamy sauce forms. Pour over the meatballs and gently combine. Serve immediately.
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