Pork-Meatball Skillet Bake

Pork-Meatball Skillet Bake
Photo: Justin Walker
Prep Time:
30 mins
Total Time:
50 mins

Tender three-ingredient meatballs are the star of this quick and easy skillet bake. They're seared and simmered in a sweet pepper-studded tomato sauce, then slices of toasted Italian bread are nestled into the skillet and everything is topped with mozzarella. After a trip to the broiler for maximum cheese-stretch effect, all you have left to do is to set the whole thing on the table and dig in.


  • 1 pound ground pork

  • 1 tablespoon fennel seeds, lightly crushed

  • 1 ½ ounces Parmigiano-Reggiano, grated (⅓ cup)

  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling

  • 2 red or yellow bell peppers, cored and cut into ½-inch strips (2 cups)

  • 1 onion, cut into ½-inch slices (1 ½ cups)

  • 1 can tomato sauce (15 ounces)

  • 3 thick slices crusty boule, halved

  • 6 ounces fresh mozzarella

  • Thinly sliced fresh basil leaves, for serving


  1. Mix together pork, fennel, Parmigiano, 3/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper in a bowl. Form into 1 1/2-inch balls. Heat oil in a large straight-sided skillet over medium-high. Add meatballs and cook, turning occasionally, until golden brown, 5 to 6 minutes; transfer to a plate.

  2. Add peppers, onion, and 1/4 cup water to skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, 4 to 6 minutes. Stir in tomato sauce and 3/4 cup water. Season with salt and pepper and return meatballs and any accumulated juices to pan. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low. Partially cover skillet and simmer until meatballs are cooked through, about 10 minutes.

  3. Preheat broiler, with rack 6 inches below element. On a baking sheet, drizzle both sides of bread with oil. Broil, flipping once, until toasted. Nestle into skillet and top everything with mozzarella. Broil until cheese melts, about 2 minutes. Sprinkle with basil and serve.

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