Grape Jelly Meatballs

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  • Looking for the ultimate party appetizer? Skip the cheesy dip and opt for super easy Grape Jelly Meatballs, the best cocktail meatballs ever!

    Grape Jelly Meatballs are easy to make with only THREE ingredients! Cocktail meatballs are perfect for throwing into the crockpot as a party appetizer! #cocktailmeatballs #grapejellymeatballs www.savoryexperiments.com

    Grape Jelly Meatballs are easy to make with only THREE ingredients! Cocktails Meatballs in the crock pot or instant pot using just 3 ingredients!

    Grape Jelly Meatballs, or sometimes simply known as jelly meatballs, are one of my favorite childhood recipes. Long before the days of slow cookers or crock pots, grape jelly meatballs were simmered on the stove’s of 1950’s housewives and served as gourmet hors d’oeuvres.

    Really, anything on a toothpick was considered to be a fancy appetizer! Pigs in a blanket, anyone?

    Grape Jelly Meatballs Recipe- a classic appetizer made with just 3 ingredients and 5 minutes prep work! Grape Jelly Meatballs can be made in the crockpot or on the stovetop.

    As a child, I got so excited when my mom told me she was making cocktail meatballs. The taste was both acidic and sweet and I would do anything in my power to get as many as possible.

    I watched the stove like a hawk. I was a slightly type A child. Imagine the day I learned how my favorite cocktail meatballs were made. Grape jelly and ketchup? Say what? GROSS!

    Initial disgust turned into understanding, and after some time my taste buds convinced my logic that the flavors actually paired well together. So much so that I actually even top my award winning Stuffed Meatloaf with the sweet and tangy sauce!

    People can never put their finger on the flavor profile. Wink. Wink.

    Veggie Stuffed Meatloaf Recipe- The most tender meatloaf ever! Stuffed with carrot and zucchini and topped with a zesty ketchup blend with a special ingredient. Come see what makes this meatloaf one even meatloaf-haters will LOVE! www.savoryexperiments.com

    Grape jelly meatballs still reign as the ultimate party food although there are many ways to make them. Some use ketchup (my preference), others BBQ sauce or even a Sweet Chili Sauce.

    The only ingredient that remains the same is sweet and gelatinous grape jelly. Grape Jelly Meatballs for the WIN!

    As for the cocktail meatballs, you can make from scratch them however you’d like… or not make them at all. While I can certainly taste the difference, even I break down to save time and buy frozen meatballs sometimes.

    Grape Jelly Meatballs are easy to make with only THREE ingredients! Cocktail meatballs are perfect for throwing into the crockpot as a party appetizer! #cocktailmeatballs #grapejellymeatballs www.savoryexperiments.com

    For this recipe, the sauce is tasty enough to cover up the shortcomings of a frozen ball. However, if you do decide you want to make homemade, use the use recipe from Grandma’s BBQ Meatballs, only make them into a smaller 1-inch ball and check out my 8 Meatball Tips before starting.  You can also use turkey, chicken or even tofu meatballs!

    Instant Pot Grape Jelly Meatballs

    Now days the slow cooker isn’t the only way to go for meatball recipes with grape jelly. Nope, now you can make cocktail meatballs in the Instant Pot, too!

    Here are my quick Grape Jelly Instant Pot meatballs instructions, also available in the notes section of the actual recipe if you feel inclined to print it out or pin it.

    Use the same ingredients, drop everything (including frozen meatballs) into the inner pot of the Instant Pot and set for manual pressure, high or 7 minutes. Use quick release function, stir well and serve!

    If you liked making cocktail meatballs in the Instant Pot, check out my Instant Pot Cranberry Meatballs!

    Here are a few more easy party appetizers:

     

    Grape Jelly Meatballs are easy to make with only THREE ingredients! Cocktail meatballs are perfect for throwing into the crockpot as a party appetizer! #cocktailmeatballs #grapejellymeatballs www.savoryexperiments.com

    3.27 from 83 votes
    Grape Jelly Meatballs Recipe- a classic appetizer made with just 3 ingredients and 5 minutes prep work! Grape Jelly Meatballs can be made in the crockpot or on the stovetop.
    Grape Jelly Meatballs
    Prep Time
    5 mins
    Cook Time
    1 hr
    Total Time
    1 hr 5 mins
     
    Grape Jelly Meatballs are easy to make with only THREE ingredients! Perfect for throwing into the crockpot as a party appetizer! 
    Course: Appetizer
    Cuisine: American
    Keyword: cocktail meatballs, grape jelly meatballs
    Servings: 12
    Calories: 309 kcal
    Author: Jessica Formicola
    Ingredients
    • 2 pounds small meatballs cooked, frozen or fresh
    • 12 ounces grape jelly
    • 12 ounces ketchup or BBQ sauce
    Instructions
    1. Place all three ingredients in a crockpot or large sauce pan. Cook over low heat for 1 hour, stirring occasionally to mix the sauces. Continue to heat until hot the whole way through.
    2. Serve with toothpicks and enjoy!
    3. If you've tried this recipe, come back and let us know how they were! 

    Recipe Video

    Recipe Notes

    To serve Grape Jelly Meatballs as an entree, serve over mashed potatoes!

    Instant Pot Grape Jelly Meatballs

    Use the same ingredients, drop everything (including frozen meatballs) into the inner pot of the Instant Pot and set for manual pressure, high or 7 minutes. Use quick release function, stir well and serve! 

     

    Nutrition Facts
    Grape Jelly Meatballs
    Amount Per Serving
    Calories 309 Calories from Fat 144
    % Daily Value*
    Total Fat 16g 25%
    Saturated Fat 5g 25%
    Cholesterol 54mg 18%
    Sodium 308mg 13%
    Potassium 328mg 9%
    Total Carbohydrates 26g 9%
    Sugars 19g
    Protein 13g 26%
    Vitamin A 3%
    Vitamin C 5.1%
    Calcium 2.1%
    Iron 5.1%
    * Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

    Grape Jelly Meatballs are easy to make with only THREE ingredients! Cocktail meatballs with grape jelly are perfect for throwing into the crock pot or instant pot as a party appetizer! #cocktailmeatballs #grapejellymeatballs www.savoryexperiments.com

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