Puff Pastry Meatball Marinara Bites


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Today I’m bringing you another puff pastry recipe in honor of Pepperidge Farm’s 1,2,3 Puff! Contest. Submit your original Puff Pastry recipe for a chance to win an all expense paid trip to New York City for two! Considering that I’ve always dreamed of going to New York City, I really want some of y’all to enter (and win!) so that I can live vicariously though you :).

For complete contest rules and information on entering, (and also to see ME on the Pepperidge Farm webpage, which I think is just too stinking cool!) click here.

I came up with this little idea thinking it would be a quick and easy fix for all of those holiday parties we have coming up. Originally, I just made six of them (the beauty of this recipe is that you can just as easily make six as you can sixty) and as I finished up the photographs I found my husband and my son waiting like vultures, drawn by the aroma. That plate emptied out quick as a wink and I was urged to make more, which I did. Those disappeared just as fast. I made more again...those were gone as well.

What began as an appetizer idea ended up being supper. Fair warning, that package of mini pastry shells comes with twenty four for a reason. You’ll need that many. :)

southernplate.com 154To make these bites you’ll need: Spaghetti Sauce (I used garlic and it was wonderful), meatballs (my homemade recipe or store bought frozen ones that have been precooked), mozzarella cheese, and a package of mini puff pastry shells.

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Place desired amount of puff pastry shells top side up on an ungreased baking sheet.

Bake according to package directions.

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Look how pretty, perfect, and flaky!

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Gently remove tops.

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Place about 1/2 – 1 tsp of garlic marinara sauce in each one.

You knew you could put those baby spoons to good use again one day!

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Place a meatball in each one.

My homemade meatballs are about 1 inch round and I had to break off about half to put inside as a whole wouldn’t fit.

But this was the PERFECT bite size!

If you use frozen precooked meatballs, you can simply cook them in the microwave or oven before doing this part.

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Top each one with a piece of cheese. Place bites on baking sheet an return to oven until cheese is melted.


Remove with spatula and place on plate to serve warm.

Puff Pastry Meatball Marinara Bites
  • 1 package Pepperidge Farm Mini Puff Pastry Shells
  • 1 can or jar Garlic Marinara Sauce
  • Block Mozzarella cheese
  • Meatballs (frozen, precooked. Either store bought or homemade - you'll need 1 meatball for every two bites)
  1. Bake puff pastry shells according to package directions. Cook meatballs until heated through. Carefully remove tops of each mini puff pastry shell. Spoon in ½ - 1 teaspoon of marinara sauce. Gently stuff ½ of a meatball into each shell. Top with a small slice of mozzarella cheese. Return to oven for just a few minutes, until cheese is melted.

I’ve enjoyed bring you my recipe and experience with mini puff pastry shells in this post, sponsored by Pepperidge Farm Puff Pastry. Now my son and husband are asking if we can have these for supper again tonight! heehee

Do you have a Puff Pastry creation to share? Enter the 1, 2, 3 Puff! Recipe Contest and you could receive an all-expense paid trip to New York City for a taste of the sweet life! Find more great recipes and enter to win at www.123puffpastry.com!

Don’t count the days-make the days count.

~Muhammad Ali

Submitted by Elaine. Thank you, Elaine! To submit your quote (or read over 400 other quotes submitted), click here.


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  1. Elaine says

    Gosh those look really tasty. I just got up and am having coffee and I could even eat a few of those for breakfast! Speaking of that it makes my mind wander to turning that into a breakfast bite. Maybe a dab of scrambled egg with bacon or sausage bits. Ham and cheese? Seems like this could start a while new trend of puff pastry. Hope everyone is looking forward to a great autumn weekend.

      • Terri go Dawgs says

        This post looks easy breezy, just in time for Halloween gatherings and upcoming Thanksgiving too. Mix it up using Elaine & Lisa ideas, the SP Chicken salad recipe, even tuna salad and it could become like an appetizer “buffet”. Fall is here, let’s have some parties!

  2. says

    Yummmy…but do the bottoms get soggy? I’m looking for lots of little bites for the THREE parties that somehow we are already hosting during December (not to mention Thanksgiving dinner, too!)–how far ahead could you make them? Keep them warm in a chafing dish in a single layer during the party or do you think these are better suited for a “heat and eat”— gather around the kitchen as I magically pull appetizer after appetizer out of the oven event!Those are our usual Friday night dinners with friends!

    • says

      Hey Nancy!
      Mine didn’t have time to get soggy, lol. However, if you want to make them ahead of time (I always love to do that myself) you could line the bottom with just a sprinkling of cheese before putting your marinara sauce in to add a little insurance by creating a little barrier between the sauce and the pastry. I don’t think they’d get soggy but thats what I’d do to make sure!

      You can DEFINITELY make the puff pastry a few hours ahead of time and just store like you would bread to keep it fresh, then microwave the meatballs and assemble the entire whooha in a matter of minutes. They are so yummy…loved the garlic flavored sauce!

  3. April in CT says

    I love the idea of doing these with sausage balls too! My MIL doesn’t eat meat, but she eats seafood so these as a tuna melt would be great! I’m always on the lookout for things she can eat when they come visit for several weeks during Thanksgiving. Can’t wait to try these..now for the pastry shell hunt!

    • Terri go Dawgs says

      Hi April!
      I just thought to mention to you, perhaps look for the pastry shells on the internet, pulling up different stores near to you. Or maybe even go to Pepperidge Farm to ck where it is stocked. I have saved gas and time tracking things down, sometimes, that I had a hard time finding. Good luck from another Southern gal in a Northern state.

      • April in CT says

        Hey Terri! If I can’t find them at my local grocery (I have to go this weekend..boo, hiss!) I’ll give that a try. Thanks for the suggestion! I have several new items on my list to look for including caramel macchiato coffee creamer and pumpkin pie yogurt. I guess I’m working on gaining extra holiday pounds early! LOL

        • Terri go Dawgs says

          You’re welcome. Aw, too bad the items you are seeking are refrigerated or else I could look for you and mail them to you. I hear ‘a on holiday pounds …I just made SP’s Streusel Topped Pumpkin Spice muffins and ate one for lunch. tee hee
          Maybe if you tell what town you live in, another SP friend in your town can tell you where to find something you are searching for. ~fingers crossed~

  4. Sheila M. says

    How funny that I was actually thinking of doing something similar and then I saw your post! These look really good! Thanks for sharing this recipe; it’ll be a real help for the upcoming holidays!

  5. Kristeen ( The Gough Inn ) says

    I wonder what tuna would teast like in the pastry?? — if I mix the tuna with pickles, olives, celery with Mayo and mustard mixed together as if you are fixing it for a tuna sandwhich. Then put some cheese at bottom of pastry then the tuna mix and chesse at top then warm up — wonder if that would work??? But I am for sure going to try your way — off to the store to grab the puff pastry… Thanks for sharing!

  6. Kristeen ( The Gough Inn ) says

    Well the tuna is better without no mayo no mustard — just cook the celrey and
    onion to soft stage add olives & tuna as well as salt & peper — then add the cheese. It’s better to be on the dry side when I placed the mix into the pastry — not bad!

  7. Donna in SC says

    Love how these turned out Christy! and I agree with Lisa, they would be wonderful with the little sausage balls too…maybe with a sliver of jalapeno pepper on the top of the melted cheddar! OH MY what HAVE you started here girl!? (But don’t stop!)

    • says

      I know Brittainy, yall are just wonderful! I’ve got some of the finest people walking this earth reading Southern Plate and I sure am lucky to have yall!

      I don’t know about me being talented but I will admit to a busy mind and great fortune in having people like you read my ramblings!
      Christy :)

  8. Bev says

    How about pumpkin pie filling without the crust. (I guess you would call that pumpkin pudding.) After it is cooked drop a dollop into each pastry cup. Top with a smaller dollop of whipped cream (fresh of course, using your recipe). These would make super little desserts for a party.

  9. says

    These look like a must try! I am always looking for a little something substantial for guy appetizers. Don’t get me wrong, I love my fu fu dips, but sometimes the guys just want their meat and potatoes, if you know what I mean! I bet you could mix it up with Italian sausage and have a Pizza Tart?


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