Cocktail Meatballs I Recipe -
Cocktail Meatballs I Recipe

Cocktail Meatballs I

Recipe by  

"Simple meatballs with an unusual chili sauce/grape jelly coating. Quite a combination of tastes and textures. Note: After cooking, I like to keep the meatballs warm in a slow cooker until ready to serve."

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Ingredients Edit and Save

Original recipe makes 16 meatballs Change Servings
  • PREP

    25 mins
  • COOK

    40 mins

    1 hr 10 mins


  1. In a large bowl, combine ground beef, bread crumbs, onion, milk, egg, salt, Worcestershire sauce, and ground black pepper. Mix together, and shape into meatballs.
  2. In a large skillet, heat shortening over medium heat. Add meatballs, and cook until browned, about 5 to 7 minutes. Remove from skillet, and drain on paper towels.
  3. Add chili sauce and jelly to skillet; heat, stirring, until jelly is melted. Return meatballs to skillet, and stir until coated. Reduce heat to low. Simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes.
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Reviews More Reviews

Most Helpful Positive Review
Feb 12, 2004

The only way I can give this four stars is after MAJOR changes to this recipe. First, a teaspoon of salt is unnecessary, I left it out entirely (Worcestershire is salty enough). I also left out the onion and just sprinkled in some onion powder. Also, fry ground beef in shortening? I don't think so. I used ground sirloin and cooked them in the oven. I greased a cookie sheet and baked the meatballs at 375 for 10-15 minutes, turning once. I then added the chili sauce, grape jelly and meatballs to my slow cooker and let them heat up.The combo of chili sauce and grape jelly is excellent, once the flavors combined and the sauce thickened this was an excellent snack. Great crowd pleaser.

Most Helpful Critical Review
May 25, 2009

I used frozen meatballs from Sam's Club and made the sauce as written exactly. The meatballs were too sweet and the flavors didn't blend well. I used brand name Grape Jelly & brand named chili sauce. The Grape overpowered the chili sauce. Will not make again.

Dec 22, 2003

This is soo easy!! I cheat though and use frozen meatballs, put them in a crockpot w/the chili sauce and grape jelly and just let them heat in the crock pot on low. Really nice snack. :)

Dec 31, 2003

Wonderfully tangy meatballs. I bake (rather than fry) the meatballs on a cookie sheet up to 2 weeks ahead of time and freeze them. On the day I am serving them, I dump the chili sauce and grape jelly in a crock pot. Then, add the meatballs straight from the freezer. If you do this, you will need to start the crock pot on HIGH setting at least 1 1/2 hours before eating. Ready to eat when liquid is simmering. These go quickly!!!! (You may substitute pre-packaged frozen meatballs to save on time).

Dec 23, 2003

I would never have tried such a strange combo if not for all the positive ratings, but I'm sure glad I did! We made these for our Christmas party, and everyone loved them - even me, and I'm not a beef person at all! I used 2 lbs of frozen plain meatballs, and found that the recipe uses exactly 1 small jar (I think 10 oz) of jelly, and 1 jar (12 oz) of chili sauce. How could it get any easier? And definitely let them sit in the crock pot for a while - the longer they sit, the more the sauce soaks in and adds to the flavor and texture. And don't forget that veggie meatballs work great with this too, for a much healthier treat. Thanks for this fantastic recipe!!

Dec 13, 2006

I gave this recipe 4 stars since the meatballs, (minus the sauce) were excellent. However, the sauce was way too sweet, not at all spicy, and left something to be desired. After some tweaking, I was able to make this an excellent appetizer that got great reviews! First, I baked the meatballs rather than frying them. I mixed the original ingredients for the sauce, added a few dashes of Frank's Hot Sauce, one clove of minced garlic, powdered mustard, and 1 1/2Tbs Worcestier sauce. I poured the sauce mixture into the crock pot with the cooked meatballs and cooked on high for 1 to 1 1/2 hours. They were tasty and party perfect! I am excited to make them this way again!

Jun 18, 2004

This is the same recipe I've been using for the past couple years! However, I don't use shortening and like another reviewer, I bake mine on a greased cookie sheet at 350 for about 30 minutes turning halfway. Also, instead of cooking the sauce on the stovetop, I use my slowcooker. Blend both sauces and then add the meatballs and cook on high for 2-3 hrs or low for 5 hrs. I've made this recipe many many times and there's NEVER any leftovers. Great for potlucks because you can bring your crock and keep them on the warm setting - just make sure not to overcook them - they burn easily if you overcook.

Dec 07, 2005

I just use the Costco frozen Italian style beef meatballs. I add a bit of mustard and worcestershire sauce to the sauce, about 1-1/2 tbsp each and some ground pepper. Always the first thing to get finished at the office potlucks. People are amazed at the easiness of the recipe, once they wrap their heads around the idea of heated grape jelly glaze. It is so awesome that I always have to set aside a small batch for the hubby to eat for dinner with brown rice....


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  • Calories
  • 458 kcal
  • 23%
  • Carbohydrates
  • 52.5 g
  • 17%
  • Cholesterol
  • 72 mg
  • 24%
  • Fat
  • 22.8 g
  • 35%
  • Fiber
  • 1.1 g
  • 4%
  • Protein
  • 12.7 g
  • 25%
  • Sodium
  • 1038 mg
  • 42%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

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