These 3 Ingredient Cranberry Crockpot Meatballs are a Family Favorite!
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Check out these delicious Crockpot sweet and sour meatballs!
Have a bag of frozen meatballs in the freezer?
Here’s how you can turn them into a super easy 3 ingredient CrockPot recipe idea! These delicious cranberry chili sweet and sour meatballs require just a few common pantry and freezer ingredients and take just a few hours in the Crockpot slow cooker.
Use this easy slow cooker recipe as a game-day appetizer or meal idea!
Cranberry slow cooker meatballs can be served up as a simple party appetizer with toothpicks for people to grab and eat. Or consider serving them as a cheap dinner idea! They can easily be made into a meal with rice and steamed veggies. I typically add broccoli to the slow cooker near the end of cook time.
The sauce has a sweet and sour taste that is honestly irresistible and this has become a family favorite using pantry and freezer ingredients. It’s not fancy, but in a pinch when you need an easy frugal dinner, this recipe comes in handy!
Sweet and Sour Meatballs
yield: 6 SERVINGS
prep time: 10 MINUTES
cook time: 3 HOURS
total time: 3 HOURS 10 MINUTES
This easy 3-ingredient recipe results in a delicious sweet and tangy slow cooked sauce!
Pour sauces over meatballs in slow cooker and combine.
Cover and cook on HIGH for about 3-4 hours.
Add fresh broccoli if desired during the last 20 minutes of cook time and serve over rice as a meal. Can also be served individually as a cocktail appetizer using toothpicks. Enjoy!
Hip recipe tips for these slow cooker sweet and sour meatballs:
- I love making rice in my Insignia rice cooker alongside this to make things even easier to build a meal!
- We love the cranberry sauce & chili sauce combo, however, another very popular variation of this idea is to use grape jelly and BBQ sauce. We’ve made that in the past as an easy appetizer, too.
- Sometimes, I’ll add a few red pepper flakes for more spice. You could really use this as a base and add more spices and flavors if desired. I sometimes squeeze a little fresh orange juice for a yummy citrus flavor.
- Recently I have been adding my favorite orange ginger seasoning for added flavor – so good!
- I’ve included the slow cooker directions, but this works on the stovetop, too. Add all ingredients to a pot, and heat on medium/low stirring frequently for about 20 minutes until the frozen meatballs are heated through.
My kids are picky with slow cooker meals, but they LOVE this meal.
Someone asked my son recently what was the best thing I make and he replied, “cranberry meatballs” which is pretty funny since this is so simple.
The sauce is so darn GOOD and it’s definitely a crowd-pleaser. Plus, it’s so quick to prepare, that I’m calling it a win! 😋
Check out a similar way I make teriyaki BBQ meatballs with bell peppers!
You can do this with grape jelly instead of cranberry. I do it in my instant pot. Got the recipe from 365 days of slow and pressure cooking website. Very tasty!
Yep good idea- thanks!
Question : If I make my own meatballs do I have to freeze them first/to
No! I always make my own. More time and effort, but worth it in my opinion.
Well you’d need to cook them first. Then you can just add cranberry sauce and chili sauce to them on the stove to simmer for a little bit… or slow cooker.
A family favorite in this house😄
Is it! Oh cool! I like easy pantry/freezer ideas like this.
Thank you so much for continuing to post, Lina! I especially love that you’re giving us recipes that we can put together with freezer/canned items. I really appreciate everything that you do – especially during these difficult times, and look forward to giving these a try for dinner tonight. They look incredible 🙂
Yes, absolutely! We can get through this together ❤️
This is one of my family’s go-to meals! Definitely recommend! If your meatballs are not frozen, you can just heat it all up on the stove for a quick dinner with rice and broccoli!
Yes! Thanks for sharing ❤️ Christy!
One of my favorites too! We also like “hawaiian” meatballs. Mix together whatever bbq sauce you like and a can of crushed pineapple in your crock pot with your meatballs.
Yum I love the pineapple idea 💕 thanks for sharing that!
Thank you for starting with fresh comments if this is an older recipe 🙂 it sounds delicious and I’m sure my fam will love it!!!
Yes!! Absolutely- thanks Jen!!
Are they spicy with the chili sauce? They sound yummy!
no – more zesty. Yes!
What a coincidence, I made these for dinner on Wednesday. They are so easy to make.
Oh nice – thanks for sharing Amie 😀
Keep the recipes coming!! Love it.
Thanks for the feedback Amy!
Can you use a can of whole cranberry sauce instead of jellied? Thanks!
Ya I’m sure you can experiment with that. Could be a diff texture mainly but I would think good 👍
I like this idea since it may have less sugar than the grape jelly version
How much grape jelly, in lieu of cranberry?
I’m thinking the same 14 oz. would most likely work.
What kind of chilli sauce do you use? Where is it found at the grocery store?
I use Heinz – it should be located with the condiments and is similar to ketchup – hope that helps!
If I wanted to double this recipe, would I need to adjust the time to cook as well?
Make it [dirty] keto/low carb with these swaps!
• Good Good No Sugar Added Concord Grape Jelly
• G Hughes Sugar Free Sweet Chili Sauce
Yum! Thanks for the suggestions!
O.k. I was skeptical, but I tried it and it was GREAT!! Just a note, a usually make my own bbq sauce and I still thought this was terrific! Also, my hubby and 20-something thought it was the bomb too! Thank you, Lina! Letting it cook for a while definitely makes the flavor even better.
Oh yay! This made my day! Thanks for sharing ❤️