Easy Sicilian-Style Meatballs

Easy Sicilian Meatballs with Currants

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Pine nuts, currants, and plenty of Parmesan cheese go into these easy Sicilian-style meatballs. Serve these Sicilian meatballs with a simple ragù and pasta or on toasted hoagie rolls with melted provolone for a super flavorful meatball sub!

Sicilian Meatballs

These meatballs are plump, juicy, and loaded with flavor. The sweetness and nuttiness of currants and pine nuts work so well with the pork. Heavy cream, eggs, and Parmesan cheese keep these meatballs decadent and moist as they cook!

These meatballs remind me a bit of the meatballs I used to get at Frankie’s Spuntino when I lived in Brooklyn. They used raisins, so if you can’t find currants, feel free to make that swap instead.

I prepare a simple ragù using carrots, which add a nice sweetness to offset the acidity of the tomatoes. You can also use a 32-ounce jar of your favorite tomato sauce and skip the homemade ragù altogether. I’ve done it both ways! Serve these easy Sicilian-style meatballs and ragù with your favorite pasta like spaghetti, fettuccine, or tagliatelle. The meatballs would also be delicious with rigatoni!

You can also serve this with fresh basil or freshly minced parsley to add a nice bit of herby freshness.

Easy Sicilian-Style Meatballs

I hope you love this recipe as much as I did! If you make it, please rate the recipe and drop a comment below to let me know what you think!

Easy Sicilian-Style Meatballs

Easy Sicilian-Style Meatballs

Pine nuts, currants, and plenty of Parmesan cheese go into these easy Sicilian-style meatballs. Serve it with a simple ragù and pasta (recipe below) or on toasted hoagie rolls with melted provolone for an amazing Sicilian-style meatball sub!
4.41 from 10 votes
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Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 25 minutes
Servings: 5
Calories: 636kcal




  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream or whole milk
  • ½ cup breadcrumbs, plus more if necessary
  • ½ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 shallot, peeled and minced
  • 3 cloves, garlic peeled and minced
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • ¼ cup pine nuts, crushed
  • ¼ cup dry currants
  • ½ cup loosely packed parsley, minced
  • pounds ground pork, beef, or a mix of the two
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons neutral cooking oil, for frying

Pasta and ragù:

  • 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion, peeled and diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 3 small carrots, peeled and small-diced
  • ½ cup beef stock or red wine
  • 1 28- ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 16 ounces spaghetti or tagliatelle
  • Salt pepper, crushed red pepper, and sugar to taste
  • Fresh basil and grated Parmesan cheese, optional, for serving


Prepare the meatballs:

  • In a mixing bowl combine the breadcrumbs with the cream or milk and let stand for 5 minutes.
  • Add the Parmesan cheese, shallot, garlic, eggs, pine nuts, currants, and chopped parsley and mix to combine.
  • Add the ground meat and season liberally with salt and pepper. Work with your hands–being careful not to over-mix–until all the ingredients are combined.
  • Spoon out a heaping tablespoon of the mixture and roll it into a meatball, being careful not to overwork the meat, and transfer it to a plate. Form the rest of the mixture into meatballs. Set aside.

Fry the meatballs:

  • In a wide pot, heat the oil over medium heat until hot and shimmering. Add the meatballs in an even layer. Cook in batches for 3-4 minutes per side until well-browned all over, about 10–12 minutes total. Remove the meatballs from the pot and transfer to a plate. Wipe out the excess oil, leaving any fond in the pot.

Prepare the ragù:

  • Heat 1 teaspoon olive oil in the pot over medium heat until very hot. Add the onion and cook for 4-6 minutes until golden brown and beginning to soften.
  • Add the carrots and cook for 8-9 minutes, stirring regularly, until they begin to soften. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute or until fragrant.
  • Pour in the stock or wine and scrape up any browned bits stuck to the bottom. Bring to a boil for 5-6 minutes until reduced slightly.
  • Add the tomatoes and season with salt, pepper, crushed red pepper, and a pinch of sugar.
  • Add the meatballs to the sauce. Bring to a boil. Cover and reduce the heat to low. Simmer, stirring periodically, for 45 minutes.

Cook the pasta:

  • While the sauce is simmering, prepare the pasta according to package instructions. Drain and reserve ½ cup pasta water.

To serve:

  • Spoon the meatballs onto a large serving platter. Return the sauce to a low boil and add the pasta cooking water. Toss the pasta with the sauce and serve with the meatballs. Garnish with fresh basil and more Parmesan cheese if you like. Enjoy!


Calories: 636kcal | Carbohydrates: 97g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 18g | Sodium: 517mg | Fiber: 8g | Sugar: 14g | Vitamin C: 21mg
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