This recipe for slow cooker Sunday Gravy might just be one of the best Italian recipes ever. This dish can be a little expensive and time consuming to make but it is well worth it in the end. There are three different types of meats that are in this dish—meatballs, boneless ribs, and Italian sausage. The slow cooker does most of the work but you will still have to brown the meat in the pan. You will notice that there are not many seasonings included in the ingredients list for the sauce because most of the flavor comes from the meat while it is being slow cooked. The pork really helps to give this dish a unique and delicious flavor. If you are looking to feed a large crowd this recipe will serve many people. The gravy goes great served on top of just about any type of pasta. Enjoy.
- 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 1lb country style boneless pork ribs
- 1lb mild Italian sausage links (sliced)
- 1lb ground beef
- 3 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
- 1 large egg (slightly beaten)
- ¼ cup Italian breadcrumbs
- 1 ½ tablespoons minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ¼ cup milk
- ¾ teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 ½ teaspoons dried parsley
- 1 small onion (diced)
- 3 garlic cloves (minced)
- 1 (28 ounces) can crushed tomatoes
- 1 (28 ounces) can diced tomatoes (with juice)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ground black pepper (to taste)
- To make the meatballs—in a large bowl combine ground beef, Italian breadcrumbs, egg, milk, parmesan cheese, 1 ½ tablespoon of garlic, 1 teaspoon salt, ½ teaspoon ground black pepper, and parsley. Shape the mixture into small-medium sized meatballs.
- Heat a large skillet to medium-high heat. Add 3 tablespoons of olive oil and cook the boneless ribs on one side until browned, flip them over, and cook on the other side until browned.
- Transfer to the slow cooker.
- Add the prepared meatballs and the sausage link slices to the pan and cook until browned (you may have to cook them in batches depending on the size of your pan). Transfer to the slow cooker.
- In the same skillet add the remaining tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat and add the onion.
- Cook the onion for 3-4 minutes and then add the minced garlic and cook for 30 seconds. Transfer the onion and garlic to the slow cooker.
- Add the crushed and diced tomatoes, salt, and pepper to the slow cooker on top of the meat mixture.
- Turn the slow cooker on high and cook for 5-6 hours or until the meat is fully cooked and the boneless ribs pull apart easily. Serve with pasta.