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Slimming World recipes: Meatballs and pasta in a spicy tomato sauce

 Photo: Courtesy

Serves 4

Ready in 50 minutes

400g dried penne pasta

For the meatballs:

250g lean beef mince (5% fat or less)

250g lean pork mince (5% fat or less)

1/2 onion, finely chopped

1 small garlic clove, grated

1/2 tsp dried sage

1/2 tsp smoked paprika

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Low-calorie cooking spray

For the sauce:

1 onion, finely chopped

2 garlic cloves, crushed

400g can chopped tomatoes

2 tbsp tomato purée

1 tsp white wine vinegar

1 heaped tsp dried oregano

1 vegetable stock cube

1 tsp dried parsley

2 tbsp finely chopped fresh basil

1/2 red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped

120g baby plum tomatoes, halved

100g baby leaf spinach


First, make the meatballs

Mix together both minces, the onion, garlic, sage, paprika and salt and pepper with your hands. Then form the mixture into 24 equal-sized balls.

Spray a large non-stick frying pan with low-calorie cooking spray and place over a high heat. Working in batches, fry the meatballs until browned and set aside (don’t worry if they aren’t cooked through at this stage).

To make the sauce:

Spray the frying pan with a little more low-calorie cooking spray, turn down the heat to medium and fry the onion for 10 mins, adding a little water if it starts to stick. Stir in the remaining sauce ingredients (except the tomatoes and spinach), add 350ml of boiling water and bring to a simmer. Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to the pack instructions.

Add the meatballs to the sauce and cook for 5 mins, then add the tomatoes and cook for a further 5 mins or until the meatballs are cooked through and piping hot. Add the spinach and cook for 2 mins or until the spinach has wilted.

Drain the pasta and mix through the meatballs and sauce, checking the seasoning before serving. Enjoy with lots of mixed salad.

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