Spaghetti and meatballs


  • 100g mushrooms, really finely chopped

  • 250g 5% or less fat beef mince

  • 1 heaped tsp garlic granules

  • Sprinkling dried oregano

  • 250g cherry tomatoes, chopped

  • 1 400g can of chopped tomatoes 

  • 1 tbsp tomato purée

  • Handful of black olive, rinsed if briney

  • 2 tbsp capers

  • Brown spaghetti, cooked according to the instructions


  • In a bowl, mix the mince, mushrooms garlic and oregano. 

  • Form into little meatballs, or 'polpette'. It doesn't matter how big you make them, though bear in mind when you bake them they will need less time if they're little, but do try to make them a multiple of 4 so you don't get squabbles when you dish up. 

  • Place the little balls onto a lined baking sheet and cook at 180 fan for 15-25 minutes, depending on the size. 

  • Meanwhile, add the chopped cherry tomatoes to a pan with the chopped tomatoes. Cook until the fresh tomatoes are starting to break down. 

  • Add the purée, stir through and allow to cook off for a minute or so. 

  • Add the olives and capers and reduce the sauce to a simmer. Cover and leave cooking for 15 minutes, or until you're ready to serve.

  • Stir the cooked meatballs into the sauce, making sure not to knock them about too much, and serve heaped onto cooked spaghetti and with a smattering of fresh parsley.

Serves 4



  • Using lean red meat and replacing a good chunk of it with meaty mushrooms, helps to reduce the saturated fat content considerably.  

  • No additional fat or salt is added to this dish.

  • Tomatoes are chock-full of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants such as lycopene. 

  • Wholegrains are low on the glycaemic index, are toothsome and filling and can help lower cholesterol.