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Italian Meatball Stew

This hearty one-dish dinner features small meatballs braised with vegetables and topped with Parmesa...

Like most stews, this comforting, colorful bowl of goodness is even better the next day (if there’s any left!). To save time, look for precut butternut squash in the produce section.

Makes 6 servings


1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 pound ground round beef (85 percent lean)
1/3 cup Italian-flavored dry breadcrumbs
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup chopped onions
1 small clove garlic, peeled and crushed
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
14.5-ounce can beef broth
14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes, drained
2 cups butternut squash, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 cups zucchini, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 sprigs fresh thyme or 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese


  1. In a large bowl, whisk together egg and salt until frothy; add ground beef and breadcrumbs and mix together well.
  2. Shape mixture into about eighteen 1.5-inch meatballs.
  3. In large skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add meatballs and cook, turning occasionally, until browned all over. Transfer to plate.
  4. Reduce heat to medium and add onions and garlic to skillet. Cook, stirring often, until tender and beginning to brown, about 2 minutes. Stir in flour and cook for 1 minute longer.
  5. Stir in beef broth. Add tomatoes. Stir in squash, zucchini, thyme, pepper and meatballs.
  6. Bring mixture to simmer, cover skillet with lid or foil, and cook until zucchini is tender and squash is beginning to fall apart, about 40 to 50 minutes. (Alternatively, bake stew in 325 F oven for the same amount of time.)
  7. Top with Parmesan cheese and serve.

Nutrition information (per serving) 282 calories; 10.2 g fat; 107 mg cholesterol; 603 mg sodium; 17.4 g carbohydrate; 2.7 g fiber; 30.1 g protein.