Meatball Salad {Italian Meal In One}

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Last Updated on August 3, 2020 by Deanna Samaan

Meatball Salad is an Italian meal salad. Italian homemade meatballs on top of a white balsamic salad will fill you up with its yummy flavor combination. Plus this Italian salad is a great use for  leftover meatballs



Meatball Salad is an Italian meal salad. Homemade meatballs on top of a white balsamic salad will fill you up with its yummy flavor combination. 


Meal Salads

Do you know what meal salads are? Meal salads are salads that so loaded with toppings they are an entire meal in one!



Meatball Salad is an Italian meal salad. Homemade meatballs on top of a white balsamic salad will fill you up with its yummy flavor combination.




Can you tell I love meatballs? I have shown you recipes like Slow Cooker Caprese Meatball Subs, Slow Cooker Meatball Stew, and even Meatball Ranch Stroganoff. I love meatballs what can I say? Don’t judge me!



Italian Homemade Meatballs

All seriousness, I think my love of Italian homemade meatballs comes from growing up. Meatball was a special thing in my family. My mom would make Italian homemade meatballs and hot sausage for special occasions and such. Leftover meatballs were used the next day in spaghetti. It always made the spaghetti taste so much better.


My family really loves meatballs. The funny thing is, we not even Italian. We are German, Irish and Polish. How this love affair with Italian stated not sure. I know my mom and dad when they lived in Mt Washington in Pittsburgh was friends with an Italian family owned a Pizzaria.



Meatball Salad pin

Funny Story Meatball Story

On that note, I will tell you a funny story about this meatball love and this Italian mother of the family that owned the Pizzaria. She was from Italy and she was older. So keep that in mind as you read this story.


I am the oldest in my family. When my mom was pregnant with me, the little old lady from this pizzeria in Mt Washington told her:


“Patty, Patty, eat lots of meatballs and little girl will have big boobs and little boy would have a big penis”


So, my mom did that as she was pregnant with me. I was about 4 months old when my mom got pregnant with my sister Lori.


We are only 13 months apart, Lori and I. My mom was sick of meatballs so she didn’t eat them with Lori. Next up is my sister Chrissy, she and Lori are only 15 months apart. My mom did half and half with meatballs.


The results: I do have big boobs, Lori doesn’t and Chrissy is in the middle. So maybe there was some wisdom in the old Italian woman’s advice to my mom all those years ago. Let’s see someone get a grant and research that notion about meatballs.



Meatball Salad is an Italian meal salad. Homemade meatballs on top of a white balsamic salad will fill you up with its yummy flavor combination.


Meatball Salad

So how did the meatball salad come to be? The truth be told, it was originally going to be a redo of the Meatball Salad Sliders. However, I felt summer slump and decided I did not feel like making sliders.


Instead, I decided that the meatball salad needed to be its own post. It so good that is why. I was first heard of a meatball salad from a friend who goes to Vegas on a monthly basis. She has it there all the time.



Meatball Salad


Leftover Meatballs Recipe

I had heard so much about meatball salad from her, that when I saw that a restaurant in Niles Ohio, which is famous for its Italian meatballs had a meatball salad, that I had to try it.


Anyway, she was right, the salad was amazing! This salad is the perfect leftover meatballs recipe.



Italian Salad Recipe

Anytime I had to cover in Niles I got that meal salad. I brought my friend one of that Italian salad recipe from Niles to her. She said it was identical to what she got in Vegas. So the Meatball Salad came about first in the sliders, and now on its own.



What To Do With Leftover Meatballs

So if you are looking what to do with leftover meatballs, then this meatballs with salad is perfect. This Italian salad recipe will fill you up in no time.



Meatball Salad is an Italian meal salad. Homemade meatballs on top of a white balsamic salad will fill you up with its yummy flavor combination.


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Meatball Salad
Yield: 4 Servings

Meatball Salad

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes

Meatball Salad is an Italian meal salad. Homemade meatballs on top of a white balsamic salad will fill you up with its yummy flavor combination.


  • 1/2 red onion chopped
  • 1/2 green pepper chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons molasses
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon Italian seasonings
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon red crushed pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper
  • 1 can can of tomato sauce (16 oz)
  • 1 package of meatball mix (it has pork veal ground beef it)
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tbsp white balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp of truffle oil
  • 1 clove of garlic minced finely
  • 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon thyme
  • 1 package of bagged salad



  1. Mix all the ingredients together for the meatballs
  2. Form the meatballs
  3. Bake the meatballs at 350 for about 20 minutes.


  1. Saute the onion and pepper in the olive oil, saute it till onions start to become clear.
  2. Next, add the brown sugar, garlic, and the vinegar. You can experiment with vinegar, I like to use a variety of red wine and balsamic. Stir and let it cook for about 1-2 minutes in the sugar vinegar mixture.
  3. Add the tomato paste and spices to the mixture, give a good stir and let cook another minute.
  4. Then add the molasses to the sauce, stir it in and let cook for about 2 minutes, this what they call the black tar in making the sauce, the tar is the secret to good sauce I was told and, it is what binds it all together.
  5. Add a can of tomato sauce to the black tar and stir it all together, this when you want to taste it and adjust, if too sweet add some more vinegar, need more spice, add it, too acidic add more molasses or brown sugar. Trust your judgment on this.
  6. Once you have the sauce all mixed together, add the cooked meatballs and mixed them in so they covered in the sauce.
  7. Set the meatballs aside


  1. Whisk together the ingredients to make the dressing for the salad.
  2. Place the lettuce in a bowl, and pour the dressing over the salad and toss the salad.
  3. Assemble
  4. Place the salad on a plate
  5. Top it off with some the meatballs
  6. Serve it up and ENJOY!


Now the one thing when comes to making the sauce, in all honesty, there is no measuring, it is all taste and trusting yourself. So all the amounts got listed in all honesty is approximate. You have to taste and adjust to what you like, this is what I like in a sauce. You could do a short cut and use a bottled sauce, I personally love making my own sauce.

Nutrition Information:

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 510

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  • heather (delicious not gorgeous)
    July 22, 2017

    would have never thought to pair meatballs and salad! sounds so tasty though, and a tad healthier than spaghetti and meatballs (;

  • Ginny McMeans
    July 22, 2017

    This is such an unusual salad. That sauce sounds absolutely delicious and I could use that on other things!

  • Jagruti
    July 22, 2017

    I liked your funny story 🙂 I can make this salad with vegetarian meat balls.

  • Kirstine
    July 22, 2017

    Those meatballs look nothing less than amazing…. good idea with the salad. Will make these for my 4 year old very soon.

  • Anita
    July 22, 2017

    First time seeing meatballs paired with salad. Feels a bit weird, but then, why not? 🙂

  • Michelle
    July 23, 2017

    I’m not Italian, too, and I love meatballs especially with spaghetti. Never thought to pair it with salad. I’ll have to try this recipe.

  • Lavonnia AllisonBurres
    July 23, 2017

    As many times as I’ve fixed those meatballs, I had never thought of that. I could have done that when my husband had his meatball subs!

  • ChrissyAdventures
    July 23, 2017

    Thank you for the printable recipe! I like the printable ones 😉 although I’m a vegetarian my husband is a meat lover and I have yet to perfect the perfect meatball recipe that he loves. So I plan on trying yours. And by the way, if anyone does the boob research, I seriously want to know the answer!

  • Debbie Savage
    July 23, 2017

    I am a total fan of meatballs! This looks so delicious! I love seeing your take on everyday favorites! This looks so good!
    xo Debbie |

  • David Elliott
    July 24, 2017

    I think I should try this out with my daughter as she is not a big salad fan but she loves her meatballs. After reading your story I will be curious to see how she develops and how many more boys I will have to shoo away.

  • Marie | Yay! For Food
    July 24, 2017

    What a funny story! So weird that it all came true! Anyway, I’ve never thought about pairing meatballs and salad together, but this looks so delicious and flavourful!

  • What an interesting dish. I’ve not seen anything quite like it before. Looks like it would be good for summer!

  • Laura Tobin
    July 24, 2017

    Funny story, I guess my mom ate a lot of meatballs whilst pregnant of me lol! Love your meatballs, they look so juicy, yum!

  • Michelle | The Last Food Blog
    July 24, 2017

    Loved that story! Meatballs are a firm favourite in my house, I’ve never tried them in a salad though. Will have to give it ago 🙂

  • Amanda
    July 24, 2017

    I never would have thought of putting meatballs on a salad, but it makes sense! This sounds scrumptious. I’ve not seen it in Florida. I’ll have to include this the next time I make meatballs.

  • Zipporah B
    July 24, 2017

    Ohhh meatballs sounds soo good right now. And I definitely feel you about the summer slump. I have no kids either so my Blog is kinda like my Baby right now. But I feel like it’s not getting a lot of love lately 🙁

  • Kim
    July 24, 2017

    This dish looks super delicious! My fiancé would love for me to make this for him haha!

  • Adeyemisi
    July 26, 2017

    Thanks for sharing with us your super amazing recipe??? can’t wait to start trying em