Sweet and Sour Meatballs

These Sweet and Sour Meatballs are perfect for either appetizers or a hearty, winter meal!

These Sweet and Sour Meatballs are perfect for either appetizers or a hearty, winter meal!This past spring (which feels like ages ago now), our neighbors hosted a graduation party for their daughter.  (She had just finished med school…how awesome is that?  And she wants to work in pediatrics.  Even more awesome!)  The party was at a local restaurant/banquet hall, and they told us to bring Robbie along.  Now I had my reservations about taking Robbie out to a party at night considering that he goes to bed around 7pm.  But we did it, and it was amazing!  They had a DJ, and Robbie bopped his way back and forth across the dance floor all night long.  I swear that kid is going to do something related to music when he gets older!

These Sweet and Sour Meatballs are perfect for either appetizers or a hearty, winter meal!While Robbie was jamming out to classic party songs, Laura and I took turns sneaking over to the appetizer table.  They had a huge cheese board set up, and I’m pretty sure I could eat my weight in cheese.  But it was actually the meatballs that had me coming back for more.  I seriously kept doing fly-bys by the appetizer table, and each time my plate would magically have more meatballs on it.  Funny how that happens, right?  Turns out Laura was doing the same thing on her trips by the appetizer table, too!

These Sweet and Sour Meatballs are perfect for either appetizers or a hearty, winter meal!Confession: I actually took out my phone and snapped a quick pic of those meatballs.  It wasn’t so I could go home and remember the party.  (It was a great party, though!)  It wasn’t so I could post them on social media showing everyone what I was eating that night.  (That’s not how I roll.)  It was so that I could remember to recreate these Sweet and Sour Meatballs back home.  Well, I forgot about those meatballs until I was going through my iPhone pics the other night.  And there it was.  Appetizer heaven!

These Sweet and Sour Meatballs are perfect for either appetizers or a hearty, winter meal!I know meatballs are a popular party food, but I don’t think I’ve ever made them for that purpose here at home.  (We typically do meatball subs instead of just meatballs.)  As we’re smack in the middle of the holiday season right now, I figured it would be a good time to share a tasty appetizer.  One of our favorite things to do during the holidays is open a bottle of wine and just have appetizers for dinner.  Sometimes this involves friends and neighbors.  Sometimes it just involves the two of us.  Either way, it’s still fun!

These Sweet and Sour Meatballs are perfect for either appetizers or a hearty, winter meal!These Sweet and Sour Meatballs are perfect for either appetizers or a meal.  If you are having friends over, just stick some toothpicks in these meatballs and call it a day.  If it’s a smaller gathering, then just serve these Sweet and Sour Meatballs over rice.  Either way, it’ll be delicious!  Oh, and if you’re making these an appetizer, make extras.  You just might find your guests doing extra fly-bys next to the meatball table.  I speak from experience here!  Enjoy!

And since that photo of Robbie was taken so long ago, I figured we should include a more recent one, too.  This is him with Santa this past weekend.  He was so excited to see Santa…until we got there!

These Sweet and Sour Meatballs are perfect for either appetizers or a hearty, winter meal!

Sweet and Sour Meatballs

These Sweet and Sour Meatballs are perfect for either appetizers or a hearty, winter meal!
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 24 servings
Calories: 102kcal

Ingredients

For the Meatballs

  • 1 Tbsp canola or vegetable oil
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 large egg
  • ¼ cup bread crumbs
  • ½ cup white onion diced
  • tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tsp garlic minced
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper

For the Sweet and Sour Sauce

  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 Tbsp cornstarch
  • cups water
  • ¼ cup white vinegar
  • 3 Tbsp soy sauce
  • 3 Tbsp ketchup
  • {optional} 1 Tbsp sriracha hot sauce

For Serving

  • {garnish} ¼ cup green onions sliced
  • {optional meal} 3 cups rice prepared
  • {optional appetizer} toothpicks or party picks

Instructions

For the Meatballs

  • Preheat oven to 400°F.
  • Brush the bottom of a large cast iron skillet with canola oil; set skillet aside.
  • Using a large bowl, combine all of the remaining meatball ingredients.
  • Shape into 1” meatballs and place in prepared skillet.
  • Place cast iron skillet in oven and bake for 23-25 minutes, or until meatballs are fully cooked.

For the Sweet and Sour Sauce

  • Meanwhile, using a small saucepan, combine all sauce ingredients.
  • Stir and bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat and let simmer for 12-15 minutes, or until sauce has thickened noticeably.

For Serving

  • Once meatballs are fully cooked, drain fat from skillet and pour sauce over meatballs. Stir until meatballs are well coated.
  • Before serving, garnish with sliced green onions.
  • Serve over cooked rice as a meal or with toothpicks as an appetizer.

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26 Comments

  1. I can only imagine Robbie dancing along – too cute…and that Santa pic? Priceless!! OMG – how adorable!!
    I love little bits and bites and could probably eat my weight in cheese too, lol. These meatballs sound divine and I can understand why you took a pic of them at the party! The things we do for food, right 😉 ? These would be perfect for holiday entertaining….or some random Friday night 😀

    1. Oh my gosh, that Santa pic. We had been prepping Robbie all morning for visiting Santa, and he was so excited…until it came time to sit in Santa’s lap. Poor guy!! And these meatballs are phenomenal, Dawn…seriously! I don’t use the word phenomenal much, but these meatballs deserve it! 🙂

  2. Don’t you wish you could just dance like a kid all over the place without a care in the world? Both of the pics of Robbie are adorable, but that Santa one is hilarious! I could also eat my weight in cheese and probably meatballs too! Appetizers (and breakfast!) for dinner is the best and these meatballs would be perfect for dinner and a party – or like Dawn said, a random Friday night! Happy Holidays, David!

    1. Oh geez, you’re telling me, Rachelle! Somewhere along the line, our sense of public embarrassment takes over…but good thing kids don’t have that. Robbie bopped across the dance floor by himself for a good hour that night!! As far as these meatballs, they are SO good. Like I kinda want to just get up from my computer and go make another batch. Right now. At 9:15am. 🙂 Thanks so much, Rachelle, and happy holidays to you, too!

  3. I’m literally laughing out loud at the pic of Robbie with Santa. My mom has the same picture of me–I was so afraid of Santa as a kid. The guy watches you while you sleep! It’s right there in the song lyrics! I wish I could see a video of Robbie at the party. He probably has better dance moves than I do. . .These meatballs sound fantastic. I love that the sauce has Sriracha in it. So good! Have a great week!

    1. Haha! I think every kid has a picture like this with Santa. It’s just a requirement, right? But with that said, it still broke my heart. The poor guy was so upset! And sadly I don’t think we took a video of Robbie dancing at that party. We should have, though! But if you need your fill of Robbie videos, then just check out my personal Facebook feed. Laura is good about posting videos of him! In the meantime, I hope you’re enjoying Oregon, my friend! Happy holidays!!

  4. Awwww, Robbie is so cute!! And these meatballs look crazy delicious! My husband is kind of a fiend for meatballs so he would go gaga over these! I love surprising him with his favorite dinners and this recipe just made the cut!

    1. Why thank you so much, Christina! Robbie really is a cute kid. 🙂 So if you like surprising Kieran with dinner, then make these meatballs. Seriously. They are like comfort food heaven! We served ’em over rice to make them a meal, but they could be served by themselves as a party app. Hope the holidays are treating y’all well so far, my friend!

  5. I LOVE that photo of you and Robbie, David. Such handsome fellas…I love that Robbie was bopping around the party! And that last photo – I have to be honest, I want to rescue him from scary Santa, lol!

    On to the meatballs – holy yum!! Perfect meal or party app!

    1. Thank you so much, Marissa! It’s not the best photo as it was taken on our old phones, but I still wanted to include it. Robbie danced the night away that night…and it surprised both me and Laura! 🙂 And that photo with Santa? Totally broke my heart! And as far as these meatballs, SO GOOD! Seriously. These meatballs might have just become a staple in our house. Thanks so much, my friend!!

  6. Oh my gosh, David! I love the Santa photo! So precious. And these meatballs will be making their way to my dinner table. They look and sound so delish! I’m always looking for something new, and I never think of meatballs as anything but part of a pasta or sandwich. Hmmm.. thanks for the recipe!

    1. That photo of Robbie and Santa made me so sad. He was SO excited to go see Santa…until we actually got there. Poor guy! So I totally know what you mean about meatballs. I never think about ’em either when it comes to menu planning, but they are so good. And versatile, too. We served these over rice to turn them into a meal, but they could be served by themselves as an appetizer. And I bet there’s a way to turn these into a good meatball sub, too! Either way, enjoy! And thank you!

  7. I love sweet and sour combinations!! these meatballs sound amazing David! Robbie is so cute! I wish you and your beautiful family a happy Christmas!! hugs my friend!

    1. Hey there, Gaila! I’m right there with ya on sweet and sour. It’s a relatively new flavor combo for me, but I am hooked now. These meatballs made for such a delicious comfort food dinner! Merry Christmas to you and your family as well, my friend! I hope you all have a wonderful, relaxing holiday. 🙂

  8. I love meat balls and that’s a nice twist by accompanying them with a sweet and sour sauce. That glistening effect in your photographs David is enticing me closer and closer to the computer screen and I’m trying to get those tasty morsels to leap through the screen and into my mouth! (No such luck, so far!). So Robbie was bopping his way all over the dance floor that party night was he? What about his Dad? Maybe you’re more brave than me when it comes to dancing at parties? I normally avoid that as much as possible. LOL

    1. Oh my gosh, don’t lick your computer screen, Neil…I can promise you with 100% accuracy that it won’t taste very good. 🙂 (Well, that is unless you make a batch of these meatballs and then rub the sauce all over your screen…but then again, why would you want to do that?) Eh. Me dancing? Yeah, right! Robbie gets his dancing moves from his mother for sure. I’m the one on the sidelines bopping my head along…to the beat of an entirely different song. Haha! I hope you and Lynne have a wonderful Christmas, my friend! Thank you!!

    1. I think every kid has at least one photo of crying in Santa’s lap. I mean I get it. It’s scary sitting in a stranger’s lap while Mom and Dad carry on and tell you to smile for the camera! But still. The poor kid was SO excited to see Santa…until we got there. Thanks so much for the kind comment about the meatballs, Dawn. These really are quite delicious. Perfect comfort food for a cold day! 🙂

  9. Robbie is a very stylish dude. Certainly, the parents still determine his outfit choices, but there’s something more than the parent’s choice. Also, talking about those meatballs, I have a theory. Meatballs (assumingly) round, right? So, this shape is perfect for jumping and bouncing. Thus, every time you passed the table they just jumped in you plate. Thus, you’re the victim here, David! I just hope you didn’t suffer too much every time you needed to handle those cheeky meatballs. And these sweet&savory meatballs look delicious. Can you please throw a few at your computer – I’ll try to catch them from my side:)

    1. Oh, Robbie totally knows how to be stylish! Sure, we dress him, but he knows how to act the part. 🙂 You know, I kinda like your theory about these meatballs. It wasn’t my fault they kept ending up on my plate! No, they just bounced their way over on their own accord. haha! Fortunately, I didn’t suffer too much, and I’m glad I could help these meatballs out…they were mighty tasty! In the meantime, I’ll be sitting here throwing meatballs at my computer screen for the rest of the day. I hope you catch a couple!

  10. Santa is a scary dude to little tots! Hopefully Little Robby will survive the trauma of that picture 🙂 These meatballs must be delicious. I love that they have a sweet and sour sauce – who can resist that? These would disappear quickly off any buffet table!

    1. Yeah, I totally get it! Santa doesn’t look like any ‘normal’ person, so it makes sense that little ones would be afraid. But it still breaks my heart. I mean Robbie was SO excited to see Santa…until we actually got there. As far as these meatballs, though? Delicious! We served ’em over rice for a meal, but they’d be a great appetizer as well. Hope the holidays are treating you and your family well so far, Kathy! Thank you!

  11. Firstly, Robbie is rocking that waistcoat. Second, I’m passing your recipe on to my mother. For years she has always made ‘Hawaiian’ meatballs, and they are just dreadful. Hopefully this will inspire her!

    1. Haha! Robbie is indeed rocking that waistcoat. As a new parent yourself, I’m sure you understand the dilemma with clothes. He has SO many awesome outfits, and it kills me when he outgrows them so quickly. There isn’t a chance he could fit into that waistcoat now! As far as these meatballs, they are SO good. Do give them a try..or have your mother give them a try! And hopefully she doesn’t see your comment about the old version being dreadful. 🙁 Happy holidays to you and your family, Matt!

  12. Man, Robbie is really growing up.

    These meatballs sound really delicious. I love that you serve them over rice. I haven’t made meatballs in a long time and I think I should after seeing this recipe.

    1. You’re telling me, Jeff! I can’t believe how fast the little bugger is growing. I leaned over this morning to put him on the floor, and I barely had to lean over. Soon enough he’ll be taller than me! In other news, I’m thinking meatballs need to appear on your dinner plate (with rice) in the near future. Perhaps Santa will bring some? 🙂 Merry Christmas, my friend!

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