3-ingredient party meatballs that could not be easier to make! These are perfect as a game day snack, for parties, or as a fun dinner with some rice or mashed potatoes and a salad.
These are always a hit at any party, and when I tell you they could not be easier to make, I am not exaggerating!
The (frozen!) meatballs are so tender from cooking in the slow cooker, and perfectly coated in a deliciously sweet and smokey sauce. People will hoover them!
Plus, I think it's a widely accepted fact that foods eaten off of toothpicks are more fun than all other types of foods.
This recipe uses frozen meatballs which makes it so easy!
I use all-beef meatballs, but you could substitute a combination of beef and pork, or even chicken meatballs if you wanted to. I would recommend looking for ones that are just plain (sometimes labeled "homestyle"), rather than Italian meatballs - you want the sweet + smokey sauce to shine!
The recipe calls for a (26-ounce) bag of meatballs, but this is pretty store-specific. If you can only find a bag that's slightly smaller or slightly bigger (28-ounce seems to be equally popular), feel free to use it!
The Sauce (+ variations)
This sauce is made of two easy-to-find ingredients: grape jelly and bbq sauce.
Another popular variation of this recipe uses Heinz chili sauce + bbq sauce. There is great debate on which combination is better. I (you may have guessed) am partial to the bbq sauce, but you really can't go wrong!
You can also swap out the grape jelly for other fruit preserves - raspberry, strawberry, apricot, orange marmalade, or a can of cranberry sauce for the holiday season.
The grape jelly + bbq sauce is a no-fail classic, but whichever sauce ingredients you choose, you'll whisk them together in your slow cooker, then stir in your meatballs to coat.
How to Cook
To cook these, you'll cover the slow cooker and cook on high for 2-3 hours or low for 3-4 hours. After the cook time, you'll set the slow cooker to the "warm" setting and keep it there - stirring occasionally - until they're gone or you're ready to refrigerate leftovers.
How to Serve
I love to serve these straight out of the crock pot! It's easy to transport, and it keeps the meatballs at the perfect temperature.
You can eat these with forks, but it's far more fun to do toothpicks. Regular ones work, or you can get fun ones. Gotta make those slow cooker meatballs fancy!
So basically, this is the easiest and most flexible recipe, that people love and is fun to eat and easy and hands off to take to parties, and there's virtually no way to mess it up. Enjoy!
Slow Cooker Frozen Meatballs with Grape Jelly + BBQ Sauce
- 1 cup grape jelly
- 1 cup BBQ sauce
- 1 (26-ounce) bag frozen beef meatballs
- Whisk together the jelly and BBQ sauce in the basin of a slow cooker. Add the frozen meatballs and stir to coat. Cook on HIGH for 2-3 hours or LOW for 3-4 hours.Serve immediately, or turn slow cooker to "warm" until ready to serve.