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One-Pot Spaghetti and Meat Sauce (Stove-Top recipe)

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This EASY One Pot Spaghetti and Meat Sauce is kid-friendly and delicious made with ground beef, the spaghetti cooks right in the pot with the sauce! No extra pots to wash, fast and delicious!

Spaghetti and Meat Sauce
Spaghetti and Meat Sauce

A few weeks ago I shared this easy Instant Pot Spaghetti and Meat Sauce using jarred marinara sauce and turkey instead of beef. Tons of questions if it could be made on the stove, so of course to answer those questions I had to test it on the stove for the timing of the pasta. I wanted to make the meat sauce in this version from scratch and was craving beef in my sauce, but of course you can make this with turkey and jarred sauce if you wish! This has become a family favorite in my house. If you need more dinner ideas see all my other ground beef recipes.

One-Pot Spaghetti and Meat Sauce

BTW, I swear by Tuttorosso crushed tomatoes (green label) when I make my sauce from scratch! You can’t make a bad sauce with them unlike other brands that tend to be acidic and need lots of doctoring. Bonus, they are also non-gmo and use a non-bpa liner in the cans.

How To Make One Pot Spaghetti and Meat Sauce

This EASY Spaghetti and Meat Sauce is cooked all in one pot! The meat sauce is made from scratch on the stove and cooked with the spaghetti all at the same time. No extra pots to wash, fast and delicious!

More Pasta Recipes You Might Enjoy:

One-Pot Spaghetti and Meat Sauce (Stove-Top recipe)

4.50 from 66 votes
This EASY Spaghetti and Meat Sauce is cooked all in one pot! The meat sauce is made from scratch on the stove and cooked with the spaghetti all at the same time. No extra pots to wash, fast and delicious!
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: American, Italian
Spaghetti and Meat Sauce
Prep: 5 mins
Cook: 25 mins
Total: 30 mins
Yield: 5 servings
Serving Size: 1 1/2 cups


  • 1 lb 90% ground beef
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup diced onion
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes I love Tuttorosso
  • black pepper to taste
  • 2 cups water
  • 4 torn basil leaves plus optional more for garnish
  • 8 ounces wheat or gluten-free spaghetti broken in half (I love Delallo)
  • Grated parmesan cheese optional for serving


  • Heat a large heavy pot or Dutch oven over high heat. (If your pot is not heavy, the sauce may burn.)
  • When hot add the beef and salt and cook, breaking up about 3 minutes.
  • Add the onions, and garlic and cook until softened, 3 to 4 minutes.
  • Add the crushed tomatoes, black pepper, water and basil and stir, add the spaghetti, making sure the liquid covers everything without stirring.
    Spaghetti and Meat Sauce
  • Cover and cook medium-low heat (do not open) until the water is absorbed and the pasta is cooked, about 17 to 20 minutes.
  • Serve topped with grated cheese if desired!

Last Step:

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I used thin spaghetti, pasta time may vary depending on the shape and brand.


Serving: 1 1/2 cups, Calories: 377 kcal, Carbohydrates: 43.5 g, Protein: 23.5 g, Fat: 10.5 g, Saturated Fat: 3.5 g, Cholesterol: 58.5 mg, Sodium: 567 mg, Fiber: 5 g, Sugar: 6.5 g


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196 comments on “One-Pot Spaghetti and Meat Sauce (Stove-Top recipe)”

  1. I’ve made this several times now and it’s pretty tasty and easy. I like that it cuts down on dishes a bit cooking in one pot and not needing a strainer. However the base recipe seems like it produces so much sauce compared to the amount of noodles. You can easily save the leftover sauce and make another meal. Last night I made this with 12oz pasta instead of 8oz and it was just about perfect and left enough food for lunch the next day. I also cut down the water by about 1/4 cup and use an entire onion. Because of all the modifications I rate it 3 stars.

  2. Unfortunately, the pasta was gummy. The meat sauce was delicious. I tried to take out the pasta and save the sauce but was unsuccessful. 

  3. We did not like this recipe. Pasta was gummy and sauce didn’t have enough flavor. First recipe of yours we haven’t loved!

  4. My husband enjoyed the flavor but I used a gluten free spaghetti (corn and pasta blend) which turned out to be ‘gluey’ when cooked in the sauce.  I took care to not overcook (this pasta cooks in 6-9 min) but it still wasn’t al dente.  I’ll try the recipe again with a whole wheat thin spaghetti and see if that works better,  If not, it’s two pots for me:  one for sauce and one for noodles.

  5. Avatar photo
    Heather Hasto

    My family loves this, BUT we make it in the InstaPot! Like you, it has become a family favorite.

  6. Hi there! When I click on WW personal points in this recipe, the ingredients on the WW app show 93% ground turkey not  90% ground beef and it has a different recipe nam.  It also has tomato sauce instead of crushed tomatoes.  It is throwing the points off pretty substantially so I’m worried that the personal point link isn’t working correctly. 

  7. Thank you for sharing your recipe. The instructions were easy to follow and the dish was delicious. I used ground turkey instead of the ground beef.  When I make it next time, I’ll add Italian turkey sausage in addition to the ground turkey to enhance the flavor.  Thank you for a great recipe!

  8. Wow this was so delicious and easy! I’ve never made sauce from scratch before and this did not disappoint at all. This will be my new go-to spaghetti recipe for sure! My husband who doesn’t usually care for spaghetti loved it too!

  9. Kid favorite! My picky three year old couldn’t get enough of this. Cleaning up was also a breeze with one pan, and I somehow managed to strike the perfect al-dente at 17 minutes. Yummy perfection.

  10. I made this tonight very easy and very tasty I had to add just a bit more water about 2 1/2 cups 
    Other than that easy tasty and my granddaughter loved it 

  11. Avatar photo
    Jamille Carter

    My family and I really enjoy this recipe. For those saying that is was flavorless, I’ve learned to always add extra seasonings to recipes. Added Italian seasoning as well as garlic seasoning and onion powder. Comes out delicious! I always double the recipe, and the noodles do end up clumpy, but nothing stirring and leaving it on the stove (heat off) for a few, extra minutes can’t fix. Turns out delicious! 

  12. Can this recipe be doubled and if so, do I double the time as well?? I only assume to double the time since there will be more liquid. Thanks to whoever can answer! Greatly appreciate it 🙂

  13. I make this with hot Italian chicken sausage and use chicken broth instead of water.  Use one whole onion and Italian seasoning.  But great base recipe. 

  14. Loved this recipe!! I don’t have a dishwasher so I’m all about the “one pot” thing when I can! My only small issue was my spaghetti clumped together and because the recipe said not to open the lid I didn’t know until it was done. Not a huge deal and still edible! Next time I will be sure to spread the spaghetti out more when I put it in! 

  15. My noodles were all stuck together. The sauce was great but the noodles not so much. I used the gluten free spaghetti and broke in half. What did I do wrong? 

  16. I was quite impressed with this recipe. It was super easy and had more flavour than I expected. 
    I couldn’t figure out the pasta conversion from dry oz to grams (I’m in Canada). Online calculators gave me 100g which is impossible for 5 servings, so I used about 360g and adjusted points. This gaves about 7-8 servings, I’d say. One to be repeated for sure!

  17. Has anyone made this with penne? How long would the cooking time be? Penne is much easier for my kids to eat.