Crockpot Cranberry Meatballs are store-bought meatballs smothered in jellied cranberry sauce and chili sauce that are the perfect holiday appetizer. Be sure to add them to your list of New Year’s Eve appetizers! I also have Crockpot Grape Jelly Meatballs that you will love.
Crockpot Cranberry Meatballs
If you are looking for easy and festive appetizers or Christmas side dishes, these Crockpot Cranberry Meatballs have to make the list! But, just because they are easy (only three ingredients) does not mean they lack flavor! Meatballs are smothered in cranberry sauce and chili sauce for a little bit of cranberry taste with a slight kick from the chili sauce. Be ready to make more; they won’t last!
Ingredients & Substitutions
Meatballs: Look for a package of pre-cooked frozen meatballs to use in the recipe. They can be placed in the bowl of your slow cooker right from frozen. Or, you could let them thaw overnight in the refrigerator. You could try different varieties of meatballs like Italian or turkey meatballs, too. (my homemade meatballs are in the picture above)
Cranberry Sauce: Grab a can of jellied cranberry sauce for that holiday flavor (if Christmas had a flavor). This is one time that I will advise you to opt for store-bought cranberry sauce. Homemade cranberry sauce is so flavorful and wonderful, and those flavors might get lost in this recipe.
Chili Sauce: Chili sauce is a condiment as much as a sauce and is a step up from ketchup when it comes to flavor. It has a little more of a kick when compared to ketchup. But, be careful not to use Thai chili sauce or sriracha, which are different.
Can I Use Homemade Meatballs?
Sure! In fact, I think my homemade meatballs are pretty great. However, make sure they are completely cooked before adding them to the crockpot with the sauces. Raw meatballs in the crockpot may take too long to completely cook, which can lead to too much time in the food ‘danger zone’.
Can I Make Cranberry Meatballs Without a Slow Cooker?
Yes. If your crockpot is being used for another appetizer like Slow Cooker Bourbon Glazed Kielbasa Bites, you can get these made on the stovetop. Place the meatballs into a large pot with the sauces. Cook over medium heat for 20-25 minutes, or until heated through.
How to Store Cranberry Meatballs
If you have any leftovers of these cranberry meatballs, let them cool down before storing them in an airtight container. They will last in the refrigerator for 3-4 days.
- 1 bag (32 ounces) frozen meatballs*, fully cooked
- 1 can (14 ounces) jellied cranberry sauce
- 1 bottle (12 ounces) chili sauce
- parsley or green onions, for garnish
- To the bowl of a slow cooker, add the meatballs, cranberry sauce, and chili sauce.
- Cover and cook on low for 3 hours, or until heated through.
- Adjust the heat setting to warm. The meatballs can be kept on the warm setting for about 3 hours for serving.
Did you make this recipe?
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