One-Pot Pasta with Turkey Meatballs

If you haven’t already noticed, I love the simple recipes found in Ellie Krieger’s cookbooks. She has found a way to link simple, healthy cooking with ingredients that taste great! Here’s another recipe from her new book, Whole in One, where she focuses on one pot, one skillet and one sheet pan meals for easy cooking and fast clean-up. I made some minor tweaks to her one-pot spaghetti and turkey meatballs recipe to meet my flavor preferences. I used a lentil-based pasta (Barilla’s Protein+ ) and to keep the pasta from overcooking, I followed the al dente directions on the box (shorter time than the 15 minutes recommended in the recipe). For extra umami richness, I added some anchovy paste with the tomato paste. Anchovy paste is always in my fridge because it’s an easy way to add depth of flavor (without being “fishy”) to any sauce. Rather than adding arugula to the pasta, I served the pasta with a large green salad on the side. It’s a fast recipe. I made it in about 30 minutes and best of all, only one pot to clean!

One-Pot Pasta with Turkey Meatballs


1/3 cup quick-cooking oats

3 tablespoons 1% low-fat milk

1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese, divided (and extra for serving)

1 large egg, lightly beaten

2 tablespoons very finely minced onion

2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley

2 tablespoons minced fresh basil

4 medium-sized garlic cloves, minced, divided

3/4 teaspoon salt, divided

1/4 plus 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided

1 pound 90% lean ground turkey

1/4 cup olive oil, divided

2 tablespoons tomato paste

1 tablespoon anchovy paste

1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes

12 ounces lentil-based pasta (or whole wheat)


  1. Place the oats and milk in a medium-size bowl, stir, and let sit for a minute or two until the liquid is absorbed. Add 1/4 cup of the Parmesan cheese, the egg, onion, parsley, the 1/2 of the minced garlic, 1/2 teaspoon of the salt, and 1/4 teaspoon of the pepper and stir to combine. Add the turkey mix with your hands to combine, but avoid overmixing. Form the turkey into twelve balls, wetting your hands if they become sticky as you work. The meatballs may be made a day ahead and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
  2. Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large, dutch oven, over medium-heat. Add the meatballs and cook, turning them two or three times, until they are browned all over, about 5 minutes. Transfer the meatballs to a plate.
  3. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil to the pot and lower the heat to medium. Stir in the remaining garlic, then add the tomato paste and anchovy paste. Stirring and cooking for about 1 minute. Add the tomatoes, 3 1/2 cups of water, 1/4 cup of cheese, the remaining 1/4 teaspoon of salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper, and bring to a boil.
  4. Add the pasta, pressing it down until it is completely submerged in the liquid. Place the meatballs in the pot, submerging them in the sauce as much as possible. Lower the heat to medium-low and cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the pasta is cooked al dente, the meatballs are cooked through, and the sauce has thickened, about 10 minutes. Remove the pot from the heat and serve with the basil and extra Parmesan cheese.

Serving Size: 1 cup pasta and sauce and 2 meatballs

Recipe adapted from Ellie Krieger’s new book, Whole in One.


3 Comments Add yours

  1. D65 says:

    What a great recipe. I’ll have to try this out 🙂


    1. Judy Matusky says:

      Thanks. It’s perfect for a quick weeknight meal.

      Liked by 1 person

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