Our virtuous makeover of everyone’s favorite family-night dinner will send you racing to the dinner table. A hearty bowl of spaghetti and meatballs is as ubiquitous as it is timeless, though this Sunday supper can pack over 2,000mg sodium and 12g sat fat into a single serving. Our veggie-loaded version saves 450 calories, 8g sat fat, and 1,400mg sodium over the traditional recipe. Shiitake mushrooms amp up the meaty texture and umami flavor of meatballs, stretching 1 pound of beef across 8 servings. For a punch of fiber and a boost of nutrients, mix zucchini noodles with whole-wheat spaghetti. Bonus: One serving of our comfort food classic contains 11⁄2 cups of vegetables.

Photo: Greg Dupree

With iconic flavor and a virtuous twist, our remake of spaghetti and meatballs will bring the family favorite to new heights. This veggie-packed makeover of a comforting classic slashes 450 calories and more than half a day's sodium.

Jamie Vespa, MS, RD
August 23, 2017

A bowl of slurp-worthy spaghetti and meatballs is as ubiquitous as it is timeless, though this Sunday supper can pack nearly a day's worth of sodium (over 2,000mg) and 60% of your daily recommended limit for saturated fat (12g) in just one serving. The challenge: Re-create this family favorite to highlight the whole grains and add vegetables, while still keeping plenty of meaty, saucy goodness. Our solution: a version that boasts almost 11/2 cups of vegetables in each serving and delivers your daily quota for whole grains, while saving 450 calories, 8g sat fat, and a whopping 1,400mg sodium over most traditional recipes. This is pasta night reinvented.

View Recipe: Spaghetti and Meatballs

MEATBALLS
Shiitake mushrooms amp up beef's meaty texture and savory flavor while stretching 1 pound of meat across eight servings for robust meatballs.

SPAGHETTI
Whole-wheat spaghetti is intertwined with zucchini noodles to punch up fiber, add nutrients, and save 40 calories per ounce of noodles.

SAUCE
Homemade tomato-basil sauce can slash up to 200mg sodium per serving—that's 9% of your daily limit—over jarred pasta sauce.

HEALTHY SUPERMARKET PICK
Rao's Homemade Italian Peeled Tomatoes: Most canned tomatoes are loaded with sodium. (Some have over 200mg per serving!) We like Rao's, which have only 10mg sodium per serving. Can't find Rao's? Pick a variety with salt as one of the last items on the ingredients list.