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Slow Cooker Party Meatballs

Slow Cooker Party Meatballs

Course Appetizer
Cuisine American
Keyword slow-cooker-party-meatballs
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 6 hours
Total Time 6 hours 10 minutes
Servings 50
Author Melissa Sperka


  • 2 lb extra lean ground beef
  • 1 lb mild Italian Sausage
  • 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • ½ cup buttermilk or whole milk
  • 1 medium sweet onion finely diced
  • 2 large eggs beaten
  • 4 Tbsp chopped Italian parsley
  • 2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 3 tsp seasoned salt
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 18 oz bottle honey barbecue sauce
  • 1 12 oz bottle chili sauce i.e. Heinz
  • cup pineapple preserves
  • 1 Tbsp Dijon or whole grain mustard
  • 1 tsp garlic salt
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • ½-1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes adjust to taste
  • ¼ tsp ground cumin
  • ¼ tsp ground chipotle or dark chili powder
  • tomato paste as needed for thickening


  • Spray the inside of a 6 quart slow cooker with cooking spray. Set aside. 
  • In a large mixing bowl, mix together the beef, sausage, breadcrumbs, buttermilk, onion, eggs, parsley, worcestershire, seasoned salt and garlic. Mix until ingredients are evenly distributed. 
  • Roll into 1-inch balls.. Arrange in the slow cooker.
  • In a small bowl whisk together the barbecue, chili sauce, pineapple preserves, Dijon, garlic salt, onion powder, pepper flakes, cumin and chipotle powder. Mix well, then pour evenly over meatballs.
  • Cover and cook on low for 4-6 hours or until meatballs are cooked through and no pink remains. Use a large spoon to skim any fat from the top at the end of cooking.
  • Use tomato paste to thicken sauce, if desired. Gently stir meatballs to coat with sauce. Keep warm until serving. 


  • May use the same amount of frozen meatballs for a timesaver. 
  • Apricot or peach preserves may be used in place of pineapple preserves, if desired.