Recipe Summary

35 mins
8 hrs
8 hrs 35 mins


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Finely chop one-third of the onion; thinly slice the remaining onion. In a large bowl, combine chopped onion, egg, dried tomato, bread crumbs, and 1 teaspoon of the Italian seasoning. Add ground beef; mix well. Shape into 12 meatballs. In a large skillet, cook meatballs in hot oil over medium-high heat until brown on all sides. Carefully drain off fat. Transfer meatballs to a 4 1/2- or 5-quart slow cooker.

  • Meanwhile, cut off and discard upper stalks of fennel. If desired, reserve some of the feathery leaves for garnish. Remove any wilted outer layers; cut off a thin slice from fennel base. Cut fennel into thin wedges; add to cooker. Add sliced onion, the remaining 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning, broth, the water, garlic, and pepper.

  • Cover and cook on low-heat setting for 8 to 10 hours or on high-heat setting for 4 to 5 hours.

  • If using low-heat setting, turn to high-heat setting. Gently stir in uncooked pasta. Cover and cook for 20 to 30 minutes more or until pasta is tender.

  • Stir in spinach. If desired, garnish each serving with the reserved fennel leaves.

Nutrition Facts

283 calories; fat 10g; cholesterol 83mg; saturated fat 3g; carbohydrates 26g; mono fat 5g; poly fat 1g; insoluble fiber 3g; sugars 3g; protein 21g; vitamin a 2332.3IU; vitamin c 13.6mg; thiamin 0.2mg; riboflavin 0.3mg; niacin equivalents 5.3mg; vitamin b6 0.3mg; folate 104.8mcg; vitamin b12 1mcg; sodium 515mg; potassium 372mg; calcium 80.8mg; iron 3.4mg.