Joe Isidori Meatball Recipe

Chef Joe Isidori’s Irresistible Meatball Recipe: A Flavorful Italian-American Delight

Joe Isidori Meatball

    Joe Isidori Meatball

  • Cuisine: ItalianAmerican
  • Category: Main Dish
  • Prep Time:
  • Cook Time:
  • Servings: 4
  • Calories: 200 calories

What’s this?

Joe Isidori meatballs are a signature recipe created by Chef Joe Isidori.

They are flavorful and delicious meatballs made with a combination of ground beef, sweet Italian sausage, and various seasonings.

The meatballs are then cooked in a homemade tomato sauce and served with ricotta cheese and other garnishes.


Discover Chef Joe Isidori’s mouthwatering meatball recipe! Made with premium ingredients, these Italian-American delights are a true culinary sensation.


For the Tomato Sauce:

  • 2 #10 cans La Valle Ground Tomatoes (canned ground tomatoes)
  • ¼ cup Extra Virgin olive oil
  • 1.5 cups of onions, diced
  • 1 cup of garlic, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons of kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon of Oregano
  • 2 tablespoons of Granulated garlic
  • 1.5 teaspoons of ground black pepper
  • 2 cups of Mutti tomato paste

For the Roasted Garlic:

  • 1 Qt Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 2 cups Garlic, thinly sliced

For the Meatballs:

  • 2 lbs. Ground beef
  • 1 lbs. Pork King Sweet Italian Sausage
  • 1 cup Italian Bread crumbs
  • 3 Eggs, whole
  • 4 oz Romano cheese, grated
  • 3 Tbsp Parsley
  • 10 oz Polly-O Old Fashioned Ricotta
  • 1 tsp Oregano
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 3 Tbsp Roasted garlic, chopped

Method Instructions

For the Tomato Sauce:

  1. Toast the sliced garlic in extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) until golden.
  2. Add diced onions and cook until they become soft.
  3. While the onions are cooking down, add kosher salt, ground black pepper, oregano, and granulated garlic to release their aromatics.
  4. Add the Mutti tomato paste and cook until the bright red color turns into a lighter rust color.
  5. Pour in the La Valle ground tomatoes and bring the mixture to a boil. Then reduce the heat and let it simmer for 3 hours.

For the Roasted Garlic:

  1. Combine the extra virgin olive oil and thinly sliced garlic in a 4-quart sauce pot.
  2. Slowly bring the mixture to a simmer while constantly stirring.
  3. Remove from heat when the garlic turns golden. The residual heat will continue to cook the garlic and give it a toasted color.
  4. Stir the mixture until it cools.
  5. Once cooled, strain the roasted garlic and reserve both the garlic and garlic oil for various applications.

For the Meatballs:

  1. In a large mixing bowl, crumble the ground beef and sweet Italian sausage.
  2. Add the Italian bread crumbs, eggs, grated Romano cheese, parsley, ricotta cheese, oregano, salt, and chopped roasted garlic.
  3. Mix all the ingredients until they are evenly combined. Be careful not to overwork the mixture.
  4. Portion out 3 oz balls of the combined meat mixture.
  5. Deep-fry the meatballs in blended oil at 350˚F in small batches, ensuring they are in a single layer. Fry them until they become golden brown, which usually takes around 4-5 minutes.
  6. Remove the fried meatballs from the oil and place them in a stainless steel rondeau (a round, deep-sided pan).
  7. Cover the meatballs with the prepared tomato sauce until they are just submerged.
  8. Braise the meatballs in the tomato sauce by placing the lid on the rondeau and cooking them in the oven at 350˚F for 3-4 hours.
  9. Once cooked, transfer the meatballs to a family-style serving bowl.
  10. Ladle some tomato sauce over the meatballs.

Recipe video

Joe Isidori Meatball

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Recipe Tags: Joe Isidori Meatball, Joe Isidori Meatball Recipe, Recipe


To serve Chef Joe Isidori’s meatballs, follow these steps:

  1. Transfer the cooked meatballs to a large serving bowl.
  2. Ladle some of the tomato sauce over the meatballs, ensuring they are generously coated.
  3. For an extra touch of flavor, top the meatballs with dollops of creamy ricotta cheese.
  4. Drizzle some extra virgin olive oil over the meatballs for added richness.
  5. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Garnish with torn basil leaves and shaved Parmesan cheese for a fresh and aromatic finish.
  7. Serve the meatballs family-style, with a serving spoon for guests to help themselves.
  8. Pair the meatballs with your favorite pasta, such as spaghetti or rigatoni, or enjoy them on their own as a delicious main course.
  9. Don’t forget to provide some crusty bread on the side for dipping into the flavorful tomato sauce.
  10. Sit back, savor, and enjoy the mouthwatering experience of Chef Joe Isidori’s meatball masterpiece!


  1. Quality ingredients: Choose high-quality ground beef and sweet Italian sausage for the best flavor and texture. Also, opt for good-quality canned tomatoes and tomato paste for the tomato sauce.
  2. Proper seasoning: Ensure that the meat mixture is well-seasoned with salt, pepper, oregano, and garlic. Taste the mixture before shaping the meatballs to adjust the seasoning if needed.
  3. Gentle mixing: When combining the ingredients for the meatballs, mix them gently and avoid overworking the mixture. Overmixing can result in tough meatballs.
  4. Portioning the meatballs: Use a kitchen scale to ensure that the meatballs are evenly sized. This will help them cook evenly and make for a more aesthetically pleasing presentation.
  5. Deep-frying: When frying the meatballs, maintain a consistent oil temperature of 350˚F. Fry them in small batches and in a single layer to ensure they cook evenly and become golden brown.
  6. Slow cooking: Braising the meatballs in the tomato sauce at a low temperature for several hours allows them to become tender and infuses them with flavor. Make sure the meatballs are fully submerged in the sauce for the best results.
  7. Roasted garlic: The roasted garlic adds a delicious depth of flavor to the recipe. Take care not to burn it while toasting, as it can become bitter. Keep an eye on the garlic as it cooks.
  8. Serving suggestions: Serve the meatballs with the tomato sauce and top them with dollops of ricotta cheese, a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil, and garnishes like torn basil leaves and shaved parmesan cheese. This adds extra flavor and visual appeal to the dish.
  9. Make-ahead: The meatballs can be prepared in advance and refrigerated before frying or braising. This can help save time if you’re planning to serve them for a gathering or a busy weeknight meal.
  10. Enjoy leftovers: The meatballs and tomato sauce tend to develop more flavor when left to sit overnight. Consider enjoying the leftovers the next day for an even tastier meal.

Ingredient Substitutes

  1. Ground Meat: If you prefer different types of meat or have dietary restrictions, you can substitute the ground beef and sweet Italian sausage with ground turkey, chicken, veal, or a combination of these meats. Keep in mind that the flavor and texture of the meatballs may vary depending on the substitution.
  2. Bread Crumbs: Italian bread crumbs can be substituted with panko breadcrumbs or crushed crackers for a different texture. If you’re following a gluten-free diet, use gluten-free bread crumbs or almond meal instead.
  3. Cheese: Romano cheese can be substituted with grated Parmesan cheese or a blend of Parmesan and Pecorino Romano. Adjust the quantity according to your taste preference.
  4. Tomato Products: If you don’t have access to #10 cans of La Valle Ground Tomatoes, you can use crushed tomatoes or pureed tomatoes as a substitute. Adjust the quantity based on your preference for the tomato sauce consistency.
  5. Seasonings: Feel free to adjust the seasonings to your taste. You can add herbs like basil or thyme for additional flavor. Experiment with different spices like paprika, red pepper flakes, or fennel seeds to customize the taste of the meatballs.
  6. Roasted Garlic: If you’re short on time or don’t have roasted garlic available, you can use minced or crushed fresh garlic instead. The flavor profile will be slightly different, but it will still add a garlic kick to the meatballs.
  7. Ricotta Cheese: If you’re not a fan of ricotta cheese or don’t have it on hand, you can omit it or substitute it with shredded mozzarella cheese for a melty, cheesy topping.


Indulge in the delectable flavors of Chef Joe Isidori’s meatball recipe. Perfectly seasoned, tender, and accompanied by a rich tomato sauce, these meatballs are sure to become a family favorite. Elevate your Italian-American cooking with this sensational recipe today!

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