Slow cooker BBQ (barbecue) meatballs with grape jelly are a favorite appetizer or snack at parties and cocktail parties.
BBQ Meatballs are easy to make with only three ingredients. The best part is once they are made you set the slow cooker (aka crock pot) on low and enjoy your party!
I like to use Sweet Baby Rays Sweet and Spicy BBQ Sauce for this recipe or a mix of that and one that isn’t spicy. You could use a name brand grape jelly like Welch’s or Smucker’s but I’d save some money and get whatever is economical and on sale. You can also use apple jelly instead.
I’ve seen where some recipes put the frozen meatballs (homestyle or Italian) and everything else in the slow cooker for 2-3 hours on high. I prefer the way I’m showing you because I don’t usually have that much time before a party and I want them ready in time. If using a microwave to thaw the meatballs be sure to use the thaw/defrost setting and don’t over do it. You just need them to the point of no longer being frozen. Even better you can put them in the refrigerator the night before and let them thaw out.
Worried you might run out of meatballs for your party?
If you aren’t sure how much you need for a party you can have an extra bag in the freezer and a little extra BBQ sauce on hand. If you run out you can thaw the frozen meatballs out in the microwave which doesn’t take long and add them to the slow cooker. You don’t have to thaw the whole bag either just thaw what you want. You may not even need to add any extra BBQ sauce depending on how many meatballs you add to the slow cooker.
- 2lb frozen meatballs - thawed overnight in refrigerator or in microwave
- 40oz bottle of BBQ sauce or two smaller 18oz bottles
- 18oz jar of grape jelly
- Combine BBQ sauce and jelly in a pan and heat until combined.
- Thaw the meatballs. (microwave thaw setting or thawed in advance)
- Add to a slow cooker and put on high for around 45 to 60 minutes or until hot, then put to warm.
The frozen meatballs should already be precooked and only need thawed out.