20 Italian-Inspired Ground Beef Recipes


Ground beef is the star of these Italian-inspired recipes. These recipes include classics like spaghetti and meatballs and provide a fun twist on lasagna by using zucchini and eggplant. You'll still get the comforting flavors of Italian food that you love but with an extra serving of veggies. Recipes like Pasta Puttanesca with Beef and Zucchini Lasagna are delicious, filling and great for any weeknight dinner.

01 of 20

Classic Marinara Meatballs

You can't go wrong with these classic marinara meatballs filled with applesauce, zucchini, and green onions. Source: Diabetic Living Magazine

02 of 20

Pasta Puttanesca with Beef


This easy slow cooker ground beef and pasta recipe makes a great meal any night of the week. Source: Diabetic Living Magazine

03 of 20

Lasagna-Stuffed Meatloaf

Here we have all the delicious components of a meat lasagna, but in a totally new format. Instead of a meat sauce, we make a meatloaf and fill the center with a mini lasagna. We keep it healthy by sneaking in some veggie servings with spinach and making a homemade sauce that's delicious, beautiful and has way less sodium than store-bought versions. Source: EatingWell.com, August 2018

04 of 20

Ground Beef & Pasta Skillet


Sneak extra vegetables into your child's day (and yours too!) with this easy one-skillet pasta recipe. Finely chop mushrooms to resemble the texture of ground beef and stir them into a classic meat sauce for an extra-healthy twist on a dinnertime favorite. Source: EatingWell.com, June 2017

05 of 20

No-Noodle Eggplant Lasagna

No-Noodle Eggplant Lasagna

Satisfy your craving for cheesy, indulgent lasagna with this noodle-less version. Roasted eggplant slices stand in for noodles in this low-carb, gluten-free lasagna. Source: EatingWell.com, July 2018

06 of 20

Zucchini Parmesan

Zucchini Parmesan

Nothing goes to waste in this twist on eggplant Parmesan, as the scooped-out zucchini flesh gets mixed into the meat sauce. Use long, straight zucchini for this dish, which are easier to hollow out for stuffing. Source: Diabetic Living Magazine, Spring 2019

07 of 20

Meatballs with Roasted Green Beans & Potatoes


Meatballs, green beans and potatoes happily coexist while roasting together on a large sheet pan. Seasoned with fresh rosemary and Italian seasoning and served with pasta sauce and Parmesan, this one-dish meal is one you'll want to make again and again. Source: Diabetic Living Magazine

08 of 20

Zucchini Lasagna

Zucchini Lasagna

Roasted zucchini slices stand in beautifully for wheat pasta in this no-noodle lasagna. The simple swap reduces calories and eliminates gluten. It's also a great way to use up extra zucchini if your plants are prolific. Source: EatingWell.com, June 2018

09 of 20

Veal, Beef & Pork Sugo


This Italian tomato sauce recipe simmers for a long time, allowing some of the liquid to evaporate, concentrating the flavor. This easy recipe is perfect for meal prep--it makes a large batch, so serve some over pasta for dinner and freeze the rest for a quick meal in the future. Source: EatingWell Magazine, March 2019

10 of 20

Skillet Ravioli Lasagna

Skillet Ravioli Lasagna
Jasmine Comer

This easy inside-out ravioli lasagna is the ultimate weeknight comfort food--no layering or mixing bowls required. Feel free to swap in ground turkey for the beef. Look for fresh mozzarella balls (also called "pearls") in the specialty cheese section of your grocery store. Source: EatingWell.com, June 2019

11 of 20

Spaghetti with Quick Meat Sauce

Spaghetti with Quick Meat Sauce

Instead of opening a jar of sauce, try this easy spaghetti with meat sauce on a weeknight. Serve with steamed broccoli and garlic bread. The recipe makes enough for 8 servings. If you're serving only four for dinner, cook 8 ounces of spaghetti and freeze the leftover sauce. Source: EatingWell Magazine, November/December 2010

12 of 20

Beefy Stuffed Shells

Jumbo pasta shells stuffed with a hearty beef and mushroom filling are baked with tomato sauce and cheese for an Italian-style dinner that's ready in less than an hour. Source: Diabetic Living Magazine

13 of 20

Easy Lasagna


This classic beef lasagna recipe is easy to make and will be ready to eat in just over an hour. Source: Diabetic Living Magazine

14 of 20

Ziti with Meat Sauce

The 95-percent-lean ground beef helps lower the fat and calories in this hearty pasta dinner. Using whole wheat ziti boosts the fiber. Source: Diabetic Living Magazine

15 of 20

Italian Meatball Soup

Vegetables and lean meatballs streamline a traditional Italian meatball soup to make it lighter while keeping all the great flavor. Save some of the meatball soup to make a delicious casserole for later. Source: Diabetic Living Magazine

16 of 20

Nonna's Spaghetti & Meatballs


The meatballs and sauce are cooked in the slow cooker for this traditional Italian spaghetti and meatballs recipe. You could also serve the meatballs over creamy polenta or on a sandwich with melted provolone. Source: EatingWell Magazine, March/April 2012

17 of 20

Everything Pizza


This whole-grain pizza has everything on it--sauce, beef, bacon, veggies, olives, and cheese. Feel free to substitute different types of meat or vegetables to suit your taste. Source: Diabetic Living Magazine

18 of 20

Spaghetti Lover's Soup


This easy slow-cooker soup has all the great flavors of your favorite dish of spaghetti with beef sauce, without a lot of fussy preparation. Source: Diabetic Living Magazine

19 of 20

Marinara Meat Sauce Topped Baked Potato


Break out of your pasta routine by subbing in a baked potato in this simple and satisfying dinner for one. Source: Diabetic Living Magazine

20 of 20

Meatball & Creamed Spinach Skillet


Spaghetti and meatballs is a no-brainer, but pairing meatballs with a pile of creamed spinach topped with marinara and cheese is a flavorful twist. Pick your favorite frozen meatballs--beef, chicken or veggie--for this healthy dinner recipe. Source: EatingWell Magazine, September/October 2016

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