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Spaghetti Carbonara with Meatballs

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1 (20 ounce) package frozen precooked meatballs
1 (16 ounce) package spaghetti pasta, preferably whole grain
4 egg yolks
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup grated Romano cheese

Spaghetti Carbonara with Meatballs

Adding meatballs to Spaghetti Carbonara is an easy way to make this recipe heartier.

  • Serves 4
  • Easy

About This Recipe

Spaghetti Carbonara is a fabulously easy recipe and one I rely on when I’m just too tired to cook. It can be varied in many ways – one of my favorites is to use blue cheese, or use tortellini in place of spaghetti. You can also add pesto to the classic recipe. But I decided to make Spaghetti Carbonara with Meatballs.

This recipe changes the original in two ways. First, the meatballs make the recipe much more hearty and satisfying. Then, I use egg yolks in place of egg whites. This makes the recipe much richer. Because the yolks are more dense than the whole egg, I also increase the cream and use two kinds of cheese.


This recipe is just fabulous. Try it soon!

Tips for the best Spaghetti Carbonara with Meatballs:

  • Separate the eggs by breaking them carefully, then use the egg shells to transfer the yolk from one to the other, letting the whites drip into a bowl. You can also empty the egg into your hand, and let the whites drip through your fingers. Be sure you wash your hands with soap and water after you handle raw egg for food safety reasons.
  • The egg yolks will not get hot enough to kill any bacteria in this recipe. If you need to be careful about food safety (everyone should!) use pasteurized eggs and follow the use by dates religiously.
  • Toss the mixture over the heat. I know that most recipes tell you to take the pan off the heat, but I do not like eating uncooked egg yolk. Just keep tossing and it will all be fine.

Why this recipe works:

  • Adding frozen meatballs increases the appeal of the dish and adds extra layers of texture and flavor.
  • Egg yolks and cream make a wonderfully rich sauce that coats the pasta. The heat of the pasta cooks the egg yolks to make this recipe safe.
  • Romano and Parmesan cheese seem similar, but they are just different enough to make the pasta very flavorful.

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First, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Then, bake the meatballs as directed on the package. Remove from the oven and set aside.


Add the pasta to the boiling water.


While the pasta cooks, combine the egg yolks, cream, half of the Parmesan cheese, and all of the Romano cheese in a small bowl and beat well with a wire whisk.


When the pasta is cooked al dente, drain it, reserving about 1/2 cup of the cooking water. Return the pasta to the hot pot.


Add the egg mixture and toss with tongs to coat, adding the reserved cooking water as necessary. Add the meatballs and toss again. Sprinkle with the remaining Parmesan cheese and serve immediately.


Linda is a bestselling cookbook author and home economist who has written 54 books (53 cookbooks and Medical Ethics for Dummies) since 2005. She has worked for Pillsbury since 1988, on the Bake-Off and other projects. Linda has been a web presence since 2002, developing recipes and teaching people how to cook.

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