|September 26, 2022


Behind every great cheese pull is a soft and juicy meatball!

Oh, and the fact they’re loaded with cheese and topped with spring onions and chili is just a bonus!

Who doesn’t like meatballs? In almost every region across the world, they are the ultimate child-friendly dish. Why? Let’s admit it… Because the taste and feel of a ball rolling in your mouth is way better than that of a disc, isn’t it? 

Or would it be the spices in these Smoky Barbequed Meatballs?

These spiced grape jelly bbq meatballs can even be kept in the freezer. So why not make a larger quantity so you have a nice stock? This way you can provide several fun dishes for moments when you quickly want to conjure up a tasty meal on the table.


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Historically, meatballs with grape jelly and bbq sauce have been around for a long time. It’s not exactly clear where the dish originated from, but it has been published in cookbooks since the 1960s. These grape jelly bbq sauce meatballs have evolved into many minor variants today, like slow cooker bbq meatballs, bbq meatballs crockpot, etc. But they have largely remained the same over many decades.

Now, if you’ve never heard of meatballs, you might be a little confused. Grape Jelly plus “meat”??!! Doesn’t it sound weird? We know it does, but this bbq meatball recipe just seems to perform flawlessly in every possible way.


Who doesn’t like meatballs? In almost every region across the world, they are the ultimate child-friendly dish
Print Recipe

How to make addictive barbequed meatballs

  • Total Time - 35 minutes
  • Prep Time - 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: -15 minutes
  • Course - Snacks

These bbq jelly meatballs are easy to make. You need just three ingredients:


  • 1 bottle of BBQ sauce
  • 1 (18 oz.) jar of grape jelly
  • 1 (30 oz.) bag of frozen meatballs


  • In a cooker, add the barbecue sauce and grape jelly.
  • Stir to combine (some lumping is ok).
  • Add the frozen meatballs to the crock pot. Keep stirring till the meatballs get coated in the sauce completely.
  • Cover the mix and cook on low flame for 4-5 hours (or high flame for 2-3 hours).
  • Keep on the warm setting until ready to serve.

Tips for making fantastic meatballs

  • Keep things cool - The secret to having tender meatballs is simple – cold. You have to keep the fat from breaking down (i.e. melting) before you cook the meatballs, so either keep the onion and beef in the fridge when you’re not working directly with them or try using a chilled bowl and chilled utensils.
  • Mixing - The more you mix and handle your meatballs, the tougher they will turn out to be.  You can even consider using a fork to shape the meatballs! If you have to use your hands, coat them in oil and shape each ball quickly and gently.
  • You can use an ice cream scoop to form your meatballs, thereby ensuring that you don’t over-handle them and also guaranteeing that the meatballs have a consistent size.
  • The Beef - In homemade meat mixtures (like these meatballs, hamburgers, or other similar recipes), using fresh, top-quality meat is extremely important. So, instead of buying ground beef in packed plastic boxes, look for/ask for freshly ground beef. Ideally, use the 80/20 blend as this ratio has just the right amount of fat to make the meatballs tender and juicy without becoming overbearing. If you want to reduce the fat in your meatball recipe, just use leaner ground beef.
  • Bread Crumbs - Meatball recipes call for fresh, soft breadcrumbs. Usually, homemade breadcrumbs are the best. You can use day-old stale bread that you may have at home. This will allow you to control the quantities of any extra butter, fat, salt, etc. that might get into the bread crumbs mix. If you have to use store-bought breadcrumbs, use Panko, or any generic Italian-style breadcrumbs. They tend to be lighter and make better meatballs.
  • Eggs - Eggs aren’t only for bringing moisture to meatballs — they bind everything up! The meat won’t stay in nice little juicy balls without any binding. That’s why we use eggs and breadcrumbs. They combine to act as glue for your meatballs!
  • Liquid Smoke - Try using liquid smoke. It’s a byproduct of smoke meeting cold air, so it’s natural, and adds that delicious kick of flavor to your recipes that go perfectly with the BBQ sauce!

frequently asked questions

What is the secret to good meatballs?
Is it better to bake or cook meatballs?
Is it better to fry or grill meatballs?
Should I coat meatballs in flour?
Can we cook raw meatballs in sauce?

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