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Saucy Meatball Sliders

Saucy Meatball Sliders with Classic Caesar Salad

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We’re meatball-obsessed on a regular day, but when Chef Elana whipped up her moist and flavorful version of meatball sliders in the Test Kitchen, our fandom was taken to new levels. These adorable little crowd-pleasers are made with crispy breadcrumbs and creamy ricotta for a lovely texture that suits simple marinara. They are saucy, slightly messy, and ridiculously tasty sandwiched between split brioche buns—we may have swooned a little. Served with a classic Caesar salad of romaine hearts, this Encore Recipe is a party you don’t want to miss.
Serving size
Prep & cook time
Cooking Skill
  • Calories 830
  • Protein 38g
  • Total Carb 55g
  • Total Fat 50g

Given the cook-at-home nature of Plated and natural variation in ingredients, nutritional information is approximated. See details.

Ingredients & Equipment

What we send

  • romaine heart
    • 1
    • romaine heart
  • lemon
    • 1
    • lemon
  • garlic
    • 1 clove
    • garlic
  • ricotta cheese
    • 1 tablespoon
    • ricotta cheese
  • breadcrumbs
    • 1/4 cup
    • breadcrumbs
  • 16-ounce jar marinara sauce
    • 1
    • 16-ounce jar marinara sauce
  • ground beef
    • 12 ounces
    • ground beef
  • brioche slider buns
    • 6
    • brioche slider buns
  • anchovy paste
    • 1/4 teaspoon
    • anchovy paste
  • mayonnaise
    • 3 packets
    • mayonnaise
  • grated Parmesan cheese
    • 1 ounce
    • grated Parmesan cheese

What You’ll Need

  • olive oil
  • eggs
  • kosher salt
  • black pepper
  • aluminum foil
  • baking sheet
  • 12" large pan


Wheat, Soy, Egg, Milk, Fish

Cooking Steps

  1. Prepare Ingredients

    Prepare Ingredients

    Preheat oven to 450ºF. Rinse romaine heart and thinly slice crosswise. Halve lemon. Mince garlic and sprinkle over ⅛ teaspoon salt. Using a large knife, carefully scrape over mixture at a 45º angle, pressing down. Repeat until garlic is broken down and a paste forms.

  2. Make Meatballs

    Make Meatballs

    In a large bowl, combine ricotta, breadcrumbs, 1½ tablespoons marinara sauce, 1 egg, ½ teaspoon salt, and pepper as desired. Pat beef dry with paper towel. Reserve a small handful of beef on a small plate for making meat sauce; add remainder to bowl with meatball ingredients. Using your hands, mix well, then form into 6 equal meatballs, about 2 inches thick.

  3. Bake Meatballs

    Bake Meatballs

    Place meatballs on a foil-lined baking sheet, spacing apart as much as possible. Bake until slightly browned and cooked through, 15-18 minutes.

  4. Cook Meat Sauce

    Cook Meat Sauce

    While meatballs cook, heat ½ tablespoon olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. When oil is shimmering, add reserved beef and cook, breaking up, until browned, about 3 minutes. Add remaining marinara sauce and cook, stirring, until sauce thickens, 3-4 minutes. Season with ⅛ teaspoon salt and pepper as desired. Remove pan from heat. Once cooked, add meatballs to pan with sauce and turn to coat.

  5. Toast Buns and Make Salad

    Toast Buns and Make Salad

    Discard foil from baking sheet. Slice buns open horizontally, if they arrived whole, then arrange cut-side up on baking sheet. Toast in oven until lightly golden, 2-3 minutes. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk together anchovy paste, mayonnaise, 1 tablespoon Parmesan, juice of 1 lemon, and garlic paste until fully combined. Season with ⅛ teaspoon salt and pepper as desired. Add romaine to bowl with dressing and toss to coat.

  6. Plate Meatball Sliders

    Plate Meatball Sliders

    Divide bun bottoms between serving plates. Add meatballs, then a generous spoonful of meat sauce, then remaining Parmesan. Finish with bun tops. Serve meatball sliders with Caesar salad and dig in. (Using your hands for the sliders is highly encouraged!)

What is Plated?

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