They're delicious for a party or a brunch! Sweet and Spicy Cocktail Meatballs have a spicy kick inside and a sweet-spicy glaze on the outside.
There is something about a meatball that says, "Party!"
Except of course if it rolls off the table and out through the door (after a particularly powerful nasal episode.) And sometimes hearing "meatballs" means it's cloudy, and about to storm in a very unusual but tasty way.
Those are very particular and rare occurrences, though. When you see meatballs that are cocktail-sized and set out with some toothpicks at a festive gathering, rest assured they definitely mean "Party!"
These particular party meatballs are made with a mixture of sausage, chicken and Cheddar cheese, and then they're coated in a sweet-spicy glaze.
Why you'll love these meatballs
Red pepper jelly plus Vermont pure maple syrup brings the sweet, and just a little more heat. (For even extra heat, the regular sausage can be swapped out for spicy Italian sausage. Caliente!)
Prep these meatballs in advance to make your party day a little easier. After baking and cooling they can be stored in the fridge for a few days or even frozen. Then thaw them, heat them back up with the saucy glaze (glazey sauce?) and they will be ready to go.
🔪 How to make this recipe
Step 1: Make the meatballs
Combine the egg, seasonings, and meats in a large bowl. Mix in the cheese. Shape the mixture into 1-inch meatballs and place them on a lined baking sheet.
Step 2: Bake the meatballs
Bake the meatballs for about 10-12 minutes.
Step 3: Make the sauce
Heat maple syrup and pepper jelly in a saucepan until they're melted together.
Step 4: Coat the meatballs
Add the cooked meatballs to the sauce, and stir to coat them. Simmer the meatballs gently for about 10 minutes.
Step 5: Serve them!
Set the meatballs out in a small crock pot to keep them warm, or skewer them with toothpicks and arrange them on a platter. Enjoy!
The recipe for the Sweet and Spicy Cocktail Meatballs is below. Here are a few more appetizer ideas, too!
💬 What do you think of these spicy little meatballs? Leave me a comment below!
Sweet and Spicy Cocktail Meatballs
- 1 egg
- ¼ cup milk
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
- 1 pound bulk sausage or hot Italian sausage
- 1 pound ground chicken
- 4 ounces shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
- ¼ cup Vermont maple syrup
- ¾ cup red pepper jelly
Make the meatballs:
- Preheat the oven to 400° F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or foil.
- In a large bowl mix together the egg, milk, garlic powder, salt, pepper, and panko breadcrumbs. Add in the hot sausage and ground chicken.
- Use your hands to mix the meats together with the egg mixture until everything is fully combined. Add in the shredded Cheddar cheese and mix it in thoroughly.
- Shape the mixture into 1-inch meatballs and arrange them touching on the prepared baking sheet. Bake the meatballs for about 12 minutes until they are just cooked through.
- Remove them from the oven. Once all the meatballs are baked prepare the sauce.
Make the sauce:
- In a large pot heat up the maple syrup and the hot pepper jelly over medium heat.
- Once the jelly is melted and combined with the syrup, add in the cooked meatballs. Stir to coat the meatballs with the sauce.
- Bring the sauce to a simmer and cook the meatballs in the sauce for about 10 minutes, stirring often.
- The meatballs are ready to serve! They can be kept warm in a crock pot set to low to serve at a party or brunch, or you can poke toothpicks into the tops and set them out on a serving tray.