How to Make Sweet and Sour Meatballs

How to Make Sweet and Sour Meatballs

By Maria Alison | Main Dish

May 06

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I’ve never met a meatball I didn’t like. It’s like baby meatloaf bathed in finger-licking-good sauce. And when you add in sweet and sour, I get a little giddy. Are you ready to learn how to make sweet and sour meatballs?Plate of sweet and sour meatballs with text overlay that says, "From Scratch Sweet and Sour Meatballs".

This sweet and sour meatball recipe from Maria is fun because it’s from scratch and I love to pair meatballs with jars of our homemade fruit jellies or jams. Grape is a particular favorite, but Maria’s got some other tasty options as well.

Maria: It’s spring!!! Which (for my area) means better weather, and lush green gardens. It also means more family get togethers. My family loves nothing more than to gather at someones house, catch up on each other, and and eat good food together.

I love to bring sweet and sour cocktail meatballs. It makes about 25 meatballs per batch, so I multiply it to suit my needs. But you could freeze leftovers if you needed to. The taste is great. Imagine a fabulous meatball (go ahead…think about it). Okay, now put an insanely good sweet and sour twist on it.

I know right?!?!?

Where has it been all this time?!

Resources for Sweet and Sour Meatballs Recipe

Jelly- Homemade jam or jelly makes everything taste better and much more frugal. Here is our low sugar no pectin grape jelly recipe

Homemade Sweet and Smokey Barbecue sauce- because you know I’m all about the from scratch goodness. Here’s an easy to make homemade barbecue sauce. 

Cornmeal– seriously, cornmeal has gotten enough play time. It’s very frugal, gluten free, and I only purchase organic because I ain’t having any GMO’s in my kitchen (and my aunt just cringed if she read this because I used ain’t, but when I get heated about things, the ain’t just comes out) It’s a great replacement for breadcrumbs in many recipes ~Melissa

It is a relatively simple process, but here are a few tips

How to Make Meatballs

-Crushed saltines (for bread crumbs) make for really yummy meatballs. Just don’t overdo it with the salt if you go this route. Melissa~You can also mix cornmeal in with bread crumbs or for a gluten free option.

-Set aside a good chunk of time to make this. It takes about 30-40 minutes depending on how fast you are.

-If you plan on serving it like sweet and sour chicken, over rice or something, then double or triple the sauce for pouring over the rice. Because ya can never have too much sauce, right?

Melissa~ You can use an ice scream scoop to get more uniform sized meatballs, I use the same trick for cookies as well.

Learn how to make meatballs with this delicious from scratch sweet and sour meatball recipe with gluten free otptions

Sweet and Sour Meatballs (adapted from The View From Great Island)

Plate of sweet and sour meatballs with text overlay that says, "From Scratch Sweet and Sour Meatballs".

Sweet and Sour Cocktail Meatballs

Author: MelissaKNorris
Print Recipe


For the Meatballs:

  • 3/4 lb. ground pork
  • 3/4 lb. ground beef
  • 1/2 cup cracker crumbs bread crumbs or cornmeal
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 egg
  • 2-3 tablespoons cooking oil

For the Sauce:

  • 1 jar about one cup apricot, grape, or apple preserves
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar you could also use honey
  • 3 tablespoons sriracha sauce hot chili sauce
  • 1/2 cup barbeque sauce
  • 3/4 cup apple cider or apple juice


  • Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • In a medium sized bowl, combine the meat, cracker crumbs (or bread crumbs), onion, salt, pepper, and the egg using your hands.
  • Form 1 inch balls and set aside.
  • Heat the oil in a skillet. Brown the meatballs in batches, turning occasionally.
  • Bake the meatballs on a cookie sheet for 10 minutes.
  • While the meatballs are baking, bring all of the sauce ingredients to a boil. Reduce heat and let simmer until thick (about 10 minutes).
  • Mix in the baked meatballs and serve hot.


Adapted from {The View from Great Islands|}

Maria Maria Alison is family-focused Christian, who’s finding new ways to feed her family quality home-cooked food on a budget. She understands how difficult it can be to prepare a meal from scratch with such a busy schedule. On Maria’s blog Ten at the Table you will find time saving recipes that are friendly to your budget and your health.

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