Try our slow cooker meatballs, then check out our harissa meatballs, Swedish meatballs, meatball pasta bake and more meatball recipes. For more silky tomato sauce-based dishes, see our best passata recipes.

Also check out more slow cooker recipes such as our slow-cooker pulled pork, slow-cooker beef curry, slow-cooker leg of lamb and slow cooker beef bourguignon.

For the best meatballs, this recipe uses two different types of meat for added flavour and texture.

How to make the perfect slow cooker meatballs: cook's tips

  • If you want to up the veggie content in this dish, add grated courgette or carrot to the sauce.
  • Browning the meat first helps create more flavour and adds a little extra structure to the delicate meatballs.
  • Switch it up by using the mix to create four large meatballs instead of 16 mini ones.

How to store slow cooker meatballs: Leftovers should be cooled and stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to three days.

How to serve slow cooker meatballs: Serve with your favourite pasta (we like spaghetti), crusty bread, rice or even a jacket potato.

Can it be made in advance? You could make the meatballs the day before and store in the fridge before adding to your slow cooker in the morning.

Slow cooker meatballs recipe


  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 small onion, finely diced
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 200g pork mince
  • 200g beef mince
  • 50g fresh breadcrumbs
  • ½ tsp dried oregano
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 tbsp fresh parsley, leaves and stems finely chopped
  • grated parmesan, to serve

For the sauce

  • 690ml good-quality tomato passata
  • ½ bunch basil, leaves and stems roughly chopped
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar


  • STEP 1

    Heat the oil in a frying pan and cook the onion over a medium heat for 3-4 mins until beginning to soften. Season, then stir in the garlic, cooking for 1 minute until fragrant. Season and remove from the heat.

  • STEP 2

    Put the mince in a large bowl along with the remaining ingredients (minus the parmesan) and seasoning. Add the onion mix and use wet, clean hands to mix well. Form into 16 golf ball size meatballs. Place the same frying pan back over a medium heat and brown the meatballs all over for 3-4 mins. You may need to do this in two batches.

  • STEP 3

    Place the meatballs in your slow cooker. Combine the sauce ingredients in a jug, season well then pour over the meatballs. Cook on low for 6-8 hrs, stirring halfway through, until the meatballs have cooked through and the sauce tastes deep and rich. Serve with your choice of side and sprinkle with the parmesan.

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