This is one of those little recipes that I just assume everyone knows about. Then I make it for some gathering and inevitably find out that there are people in the world who have never heard of such a thing. I you are among those who have never before seen this recipe then you are in for a treat. There are only two ingredients in this sauce: grape jelly and chili sauce. If that sounds weird to you- don’t knock it ’til you try it! It’s the perfect sweet and sour glaze for meatballs or cocktail sausages (little smokies) and SO easy!
- Meatballs or Little Smokies – This easy sauce can be used with both meatballs or little smokies cocktail sausages. For meatballs, keep it simple with precooked frozen meatballs. You could certainly make your own as well, just precook them before adding to the sauce. My personal favorite is Little Smokies!
- Chili Sauce – Chili Sauce can be found in the grocery store near the ketchup. It kind of looks like a small bottle of ketchup. It’s tangy, sweet, and tart all at the same time and full of spices. There are no substitutions here.
- Grape Jelly – The grape jelly adds sweetness and flavor and the result is a wonderful and quick sweet and sour sauce. Regular, generic grape jelly is great!
How to Make Sweet and Sour Little Smokies or Meatballs
1. Pour grape jelly and chili sauce into a medium sauce pan, or your slow cooker. Whisk together until smooth. It’s okay if there are some lumps, they will melt out when the sauce heats.
2. Add frozen meatballs or cocktail sausages. There is no exact science to the cook time. On the stove top I simmer on low for 15-20 minute until the sausages are plump or meatballs are cooked through. In the slow cooker, you can set it to low for a few hours. They get better with time! You could even cook them in the oven in a pan. I’d do it at about 300 degrees for at least an hour.
Can I make these ahead of time? Yes! I would recommend making them the day of serving, but they can sit in the warm crock pot for several hours before serving.
How do I store leftovers? Just pop them in a container in the fridge. They’re great reheated.
How do I reheat sweet and sour little smokies? You can reheat gently in the microwave, or simmer on low on the stove top.
Looking for some other appetizer recommendations? Check out these Our Best Bites favorites:
- Bacon Wrapped Cocktail Sausages
- Cranberry Orange Goat Cheese Bites
- Honey Cranberry Orange Baked Brie
- Mini Pastry Wrapped Brie Bites
- Pastry Wrapped Asparagus With Prosciutto
- Bacon Wrapped Green Bean Bundles
Did You Make This?
I’d love to hear from you! Snap a picture and tag me on Instagram, then come back and give this recipe a rating!
An easy, no fuss sweet and sour meatball recipe using chili sauce and grape jelly. Sure to be a crowd pleaser at any party or gathering.
1 12 ounce jar Chili Sauce
1 16-18 ounce jar grape jelly
2 pounds frozen meatballs or 2 12-ounce packages cocktail sausages*
Precise amounts for sausages or meatballs aren’t necessary, as long as they are covered completely by your sauce you are good to go.
Combine jelly and chili sauce in a crock pot an stir until smooth. Heat the mixture if needed to combine. Add meatballs or cocktail sausages and set temperature to low. Cook for 2-5 hours. Serve with toothpicks.