Pasta and Meatballs Meat Loaf


1/2 cup dried mini penne pasta (2 oz.)

4 long individual ciabatta rolls or hoagie buns

1medium onion, chopped

1/2 cup chopped yellow or red sweet pepper

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 tablespoon olive oil

2 eggs, lightly beaten

3/4 cup milk

2/3 cup fine dry bread crumbs

2 teaspoons Italian seasoning, crushed

1 1/2 pounds ground beef

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1 cup bottled pasta sauce, warmed

Shaved Parmesan cheese

Garlic Butter, see recipe below 

Toasted Bread Crumbs, recipe below

Fresh Italian (flat-leaf) parsley


Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Cook penne according to package directions; drain. Rinse and cool completely. Halve three rolls lengthwise; set aside. Use remaining roll to prepare Toasted Bread Crumbs, recipe below.

In large skillet cook onion, sweet pepper, and garlic in hot oil over medium heat for 5 minutes or until tender.

In large bowl combine eggs, milk, 2/3 cup of the Toasted Bread Crumbs, 1/2 tsp. salt, and Italian seasoning. With hands, fold in ground beef, cooked pasta, 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, and cooked vegetables. Form in six 6x3-inch oblong loaves (loaves will appear bumpy rather than smooth). Place in shallow baking pan.*(Bake, uncovered, 25 minutes or until an instant-read thermometer inserted into center of loaves reads 160 degrees F.

Spread split rolls with Garlic Butter. Bake about 10 minutes or until golden brown. Top each toasted roll half with warm pasta sauce and a mini loaf. Sprinkle with shaved Parmesan, remaining Toasted Bread Crumbs, and snipped fresh parsley. Makes 6 servings.

Toasted Bread Crumbs

Tear one roll in pieces and add to food processor or blender. Process or blend until coarse crumbs form. In 8-inch skillet, toast bread crumbs in 1 Tbsp. melted butter over medium heat until lightly browned. Remove 2/3 cup to add to the meat loaf mix. Use remaining crumbs for topping the meat loaves.

Garlic Butter


2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

1/2teaspoon dried basil

3 tablespoons butter


In small skillet cook garlic and dried basil in butter until garlic is tender.

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