If you love to entertain but hate to spend all your time cooking for the party, you’re going to love these Easy Sweet & Sour Meatballs.
One of my favorite parts of the busy holiday season are all the parties that accompany this time of year. I love to throw parties as much as I love to attend them because: 1) it’s the best incentive to make my house sparkle and shine and 2) I love getting to see so many of my favorite people all at once.
And since my favorite part of ATTENDING parties is getting to sample lots of great food, I like to make sure that I have a generous buffet of goodies when I’m the hostess. And those leftover finger foods make delicious snacks the next couple of days after the party.
In my younger days, I thought it was cheating if I didn’t make everything from scratch. Since then, I’ve learned that most people don’t care if you cut a few corners and it is far easier to enjoy the party when you’re well rested so it’s best to have a few shortcuts intermingled with your gourmet fare. My very favorite “cheater” recipe is for Sweet & Sour Meatballs.
About These Sweet & Sour Meatballs
If you have the time, you can make the meatballs from scratch. However, this sauce is so flavorful, it effortlessly dresses up frozen meatballs so you can get away with making that time-saving switch here. The very best part of this recipe though is how unbelievably easy it is!
Chances are, you have seen recipes similar to this one before. The unlikely pairing of chili sauce and grape jelly is a secret that’s been out of the bag for a while now.
Although I am a fan of the original, insanely easy variation, I prefer the sauce with just a few added ingredients to enhance the flavor.
Don’t be frightened by the ginger and ground mustard. The amounts I use are too small to create a kick but are just enough to balance the sweet jelly and tangy chili sauce. I have two kids who detest spicy food and they still LOVE these sweet & sour meatballs.
How to Make Sweet & Sour Meatballs
You won’t break a sweat making these meatballs since you basically just dump all of the ingredients into your slow cooker and let it do all the work!
You’ll need meatballs, chili sauce, grape jelly, Worcestershire sauce and just a little ground ginger and ground mustard.
Place the meatballs in the slow cooker. If you want, you can mix the sauce ingredients together (but I almost always skip this step).
Then, pour all of the sauce ingredients (mixed or not), over the meatballs.
Cook on low for 4-5 hours or high for 2-3 hours. That’s it!
Serve right from the slow cooker or transfer to a plate if you want to be fancy. Just remember to have toothpicks nearby so guests can pick them up easily.
Ready to make some sweet & sour meatballs? Here are the exact measurements.
Easy Sweet & Sour Meatballs
- 2 lbs frozen meatballs
- 12 oz jar chili sauce
- 16 oz jar grape jelly
- 1 teaspoon ground mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 T Worcestershire sauce
- Place meatballs in crockpot.
- Combine all other ingredients in a small bowl and mix well.
- Pour mixture over meatballs.
- Heat on low for 4-5 hours or on high for 2-3 hours.
More Easy Appetizers and Finger Foods
If you love meatballs, check out Instant Pot Asian Meatballs, or these Crockpot Grape Jelly BBQ Meatballs are one of the easiest and best appetizers to take to a party or social gathering. If you liked the simplicity of these Sweet & Sour Meatballs, you might enjoy another of my favorite party finger foods – Zucchini Pizza Bites.
I’ve also put together a collection of over 100 of the best finger foods and easy appetizers. This is the list I use to choose my party menu.