Kick up meatballs and sauce with lots of Ontario vegetables. This dish is delicious any night of the week, providing enough sauce and meatballs for two meals. Freeze half for a quick scrumptious weeknight dinner. Serve over spaghetti or make delicious meatball subs for the whole family.

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Servings: 12

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  • 3 Ontario Greenhouse Sweet Peppers (red, yellow or orange), halved and seeded
  • 2 small Ontario Onions, cut lengthwise into eighths
  • 2 large Ontario Greenhouse Tomatoes, sliced 1/2-inch (1 cm) thick
  • 1 head Ontario Garlic, top sliced off
  • Olive Oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 can (28 oz/796 mL) diced tomatoes
  • 1 can (14 oz/398 mL) tomato sauce
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) dried oregano
  • 8 fresh Ontario Basil Leaves, finely chopped


  • 1 stalk Ontario Celery, coarsely chopped
  • 1 Ontario Carrot, peeled and coarsely chopped
  • 1 small Ontario Onion, quartered
  • 1 Ontario Greenhouse Sweet Red, Yellow or Orange Pepper, seeded and quartered
  • 1/4 cup (50 mL) fresh Ontario Parsley
  • 1 clove Ontario Garlic
  • 1 lb (500 g) lean Ontario Ground Beef, Chicken, or Pork (or combination)
  • 1-1/2 cups (375 mL) dry breadcrumbs (more if needed)
  • 1/2 cup (125 mL) grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 Ontario Egg
  • 1 tsp (5 mL) dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp (2 mL) each salt and pepper
  • Olive oil


Place peppers, skin-side down, on parchment paper-lined baking sheet; add onions, tomatoes and garlic. Sprinkle with olive oil, salt and pepper to taste. Roast on lowest rack of 425°F (230°C) oven for 24 to 30 minutes or until browned around edges.

Meanwhile, in food processor, pulse celery, carrot, onion, sweet pepper, parsley and garlic until finely minced; drain and reserve excess juice for sauce. In large bowl, combine ground meat, bread crumbs, Parmesan cheese, egg, oregano, salt, pepper and minced vegetables; mix well, adding more bread crumbs if mixture doesn’t hold together well. Form into 2-inch (5 cm) balls.

In large skillet, heat 1 tbsp (15 mL) olive oil; brown meatballs all over, about 6 minutes.

Remove and discard as much of the skin as possible from roasted peppers; coarsely chop and set aside.

In large pot, heat oil over medium heat. Squeeze roasted garlic from skins into pot. Add roasted onions, chopped peppers and tomatoes; sauté until fragrant. Add tomatoes, tomato sauce, reserved juice from minced vegetables, vinegar, oregano, basil, and salt and pepper to taste; bring to boil. Add meatballs; reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 15 minutes or until meatballs are no longer pink inside.

Serve over pasta or on whole wheat buns.

Nutritional information

  • 1 Serving
  • PROTEIN: 14 grams
  • FAT: 9 grams
  • CARBOHYDRATE: 23 grams
  • CALORIES: 223