Ziti with Mini Meatballs
This savory meatball dish cleverly mixes grated mushrooms with ground beef when preparing the meatballs, adding a savory note and cutting the amount of saturated fat and calories.
- 1 pound ground sirloin,
- 8 ounces mushrooms, trimmed, cleaned and grated,
- ½ cup grated Parmesan, plus more for serving (optional),
- ½ cup Italian seasoned dry breadcrumbs,
- 1 large egg,
- ½ teaspoon salt,
- ½ teaspoon black pepper,
- 2 tablespoons canola oil,
- 1 box (16-ounce) ziti,
- 1 pkg (5-ounce) baby kale, chopped,
- 3 cloves garlic, sliced,
- ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes,
- ½ cup low-sodium chicken broth,
In a large bowl, combine ground sirloin, grated mushrooms, 1/4 cup of the Parmesan, the bread crumbs, egg and 1/4 teaspoon each of the salt and pepper. With wet hands, roll into 3/4- to 1-inch meatballs (about 54). In a 12-inch nonstick skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil over medium-high heat.
Meanwhile, bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add ziti and cook 10 minutes. Drain, reserving 1/2 cup pasta water.
Once oil is hot, add half the meatballs. Cook 4 minutes, turning until browned all over. Transfer to a plate and add remaining 1 tablespoon oil to skillet. Cook remaining meatballs and remove to plate.
Reduce heat in skillet to medium and add kale, garlic and red pepper flakes. Cook 2 minutes. Stir in chicken broth, reserved pasta water and remaining 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Cook 2 more minutes. Stir ziti into skillet.
In a large bowl, combine meatballs and pasta mixture with remaining 1/4 cup Parmesan. Gently toss to combine. Serve with additional grated Parmesan, if using.
All recipe ingredients should be cooked to a safe internal temperature according to USDA guidelines. After preparing a recipe, please store any leftovers in the refrigerator.