When it comes to using convenience foods, I have to admit, frozen meatballs are at the top of my list. With a busy schedule and a home to maintain, frozen meatballs and the crock pot are a perfect match.
This is probably the simplest of all the crock pot recipes that I make. It is only two ingredients: frozen meatballs and your favorite barbecue sauce. You just fill the crock pot, turn it to low if you have all day, or turn it to high if you want them done quicker and you have a great main dish (which I make mashed potatoes when using them as a main dish) or appetizer when they're done.
These are versatile, so needless to say, we make them often. I add my frozen meatballs to the crock pot, my favorite marinara sauce and (to give it a "homemade" taste) a can of Italian stewed tomatoes. When you've let them cook until the meatballs are done you can use them to make a meatball sub, spaghetti and meatballs or just eat with toothpicks (another great appetizer).
Crock pot soups are SO comforting in the fall and winter months. This recipe came about one Saturday morning when I wanted to make soup for dinner that evening and got all of my vegetable in the crock pot only to realized I didn't have any beef (hamburger, stew meat, etc.), chicken or pork. But I did have frozen meatballs. After adding the veggies and meatballs, I added a can of tomato sauce, a can of chicken broth and seasoned it with salt, pepper and italian seasonings. It was DELICIOUS! It cooked on low all day, so it had that "slaved over the stove" simmered taste.
I don't know how to explain my excitement the first time I realized they sold frozen TURKEY meatballs. The first thing I did when I got home from the grocery store that day was put them in the crock pot along with a can of whole berry cranberry sauce, a can of jellied cranberry sauce and a cup of orange juice. Now I serve this at almost all of our fall holiday and football gatherings.
I've seen many variations using grape jelly to make meatball appetizers. My families favorite grape jelly glazed crock pot meatballs has the addition of prepared yellow mustard. The tang of mustard seems to help cut the extreme sweetness of the grape jelly. I use 3/4 cup of mustard to every 32 ounce jar of grape jelly. I also mix the grape jelly and mustard in the bottom of the crock pot before adding the meatballs (nothing worse than having a two year old spitting out meatballs onto the living room floor because she got a bite that ONLY had mustard on it).
Don't underestimate the convenience of and the countless recipes that meatballs can be used in. If you look through your pantry I bet you could come up with several different sauces or sauce combinations that frozen meatballs could be slow cooked in.
Yummmmy, good list. H5!
Love your lists! More new recipes to try! (I left a "tried it" comment on your chicken list, btw.) The cranberry turkey meatballs are going to be next on MY list of things to try!
I really had no idea there were so many crock pot recipes with meatballs. I'm going to try the barbequed meatballs this weekend - sound delicious.
select one here...