Bring a little Hawaiian flavor to your party by making this easy sweet and sour meatballs recipe using your slow cooker. These sweet and sour meatballs are a mouth-watering combination of tender meatballs, juicy pineapple chunks, and colorful bell peppers, all simmered in a delicious blend of sweet BBQ and teriyaki sauce.

Preparing them is a breeze; it only requires 10 minutes of prep time, and your slow cooker takes care of the rest. You can serve these delicious Hawaiian meatballs as a main dish over rice or as a simple appetizer at your next party.

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sweet and sour meatballs and peppers

Hawaiian Sweet and Sour Meatballs Recipe

Versatile: his sweet and sour meatball recipe is perfect for any occasion! It’s so versatile—you can whip it up for a quick and easy dinner or serve it as a tasty appetizer at your next party.

Amazing Sauce: The sauce is absolutely incredible! You can drizzle it over jasmine rice or noodles for a satisfying weeknight meal the whole family will enjoy. 

Easy Recipe: The best part? This recipe is a breeze to make. You only need a few veggies, some pineapple, and the sauce. It’ll take you just 10 minutes to get everything ready to go in your slow cooker. 

🎉 Want to have a meatball party? Be sure to check out my other crockpot meatball recipes: Buffalo Air Fryer Turkey MeatballsEggplant and Beef MeatballsEasy BBQ MeatballsMeatballs and Gravy, Cheesy Baked Parmesan Meatballs, and 35+ Easy Appetizer Meatballs Ideas For A Party

Ingredients Need For This Easy Recipe

(Note: for a complete list of ingredients and measurements, be sure to print the recipe card below)

ingredients for sweet and sour meatballs recipe: teriyaki sauce, yellow, and red bell pepper, bbq sauce, onion, cornstarch

Frozen meatballs: I like to use Kirkland frozen ground beef meatballs; however, any other brand you like will work great. Even better, whip up a big batch of homemade meatballs, then freeze them until you are ready to use them in a recipe like these sweet & sour meatballs.

Veggies: To keep with the Hawaiian theme, choose tropical-colored bell peppers. You can use red bell pepper, orange bell pepper, or yellow bell pepper. For the onion, I suggest using a sweet onion like Vidalia.

Fruit: You can use a fresh pineapple; however, I used a can of chunked pineapple to make it easy and quick. Drain off the juice and save it for later. 

Sauce:  This sweet and sour sauce recipe combines your favorite sweet bbq sauce and a splash of teriyaki sauce. 

Thickener:  After the meatballs are done cooking, we will use cornstarch and the reserved pineapple juice to make a thickener for the sauce. 

How To Make This Recipe

(Note* For complete detailed instructions, be sure to print the recipe card at the end of this post)

1 Prepare the vegetables: Slice the bell peppers into even square bite-size pieces. Peel the onion and cut it into bite-size squares.

2. Drain the pineapple juice into a jar or small container with a tight-fitting lid. Place it in the refrigerator for later use.

3. In a large bowl, combine the bell peppers, onion, pineapple chunks, teriyaki sauce, and BBQ sauce. Stir well to combine all the ingredients.

pineapple, peppers, onions in a bowl mixed with sauce

4. Place the frozen meatballs into the slow cooker.

5. Pour the mixed vegetables, fruit, and sauce over the meatballs. Stir well to coat the meatballs.

sweet and sour meatballs in a slow cooker

6. Place the lid on the slow cooker and set the cooking temperature on high. Cook for 4 hours.

7. Thirty minutes before the cooking time is complete, mix 2/3 cup of reserved pineapple juice with the cornstarch in a jar. Srew on a tight-fitting lid. Shake well to form a smooth slurry.

8. Pour the slurry mixture over the sweet and sour meatballs. Stir the sauce with a large spoon to incorporate the cornstarch slurry. Place the lid back on the slow cooker and continue to cook on high for 30 minutes. The sauce will thicken during this time.

Safety Note: As with any ground meat product, the internal safe temperature for cooking meatballs is 160°F (71°C). It is important to ensure that the meatballs reach this temperature to ensure they are fully cooked and safe to consume.

Variations

Spice It Up: Want to add a little kick to your sweet n sour meatballs? During the last step of thickening the sauce, stir in 1/2 teaspoon of chili flakes. If you’re feeling adventurous, toss in some chopped Cowboy Candy (Pickled Jalapenos) or a dash of Sriracha sauce for that extra heat.

Veggies: Take your meatballs to the next level by adding some extra veggies. Consider throwing in some mushrooms, broccoli florets, or sliced carrots.

Sauce: Planning to serve these meatballs for dinner? Double up on the BBQ and teriyaki sauce! This way, you’ll have plenty of that delicious sauce to drizzle over a bed of fluffy rice. It’s the perfect way to make your meal even more flavorful and satisfying.

sweet and sour meatballs recipe in a curved dish with toothpicks in some meatballs

Serving Ideas For Easy Sweet and Sour Meatballs 

  1. Serve over Rice: For a classic and comforting option, spoon the sweet and sour meatballs over a bed of steamed rice. The tender meatballs and flavorful sauce will soak into the rice, creating a delectable combination of textures and flavors.
  2. Stir into Fried Rice: Take your fried rice dish up a notch. Prepare your favorite fried rice recipe, then stir in the meatballs and sauce during the final minutes of cooking.
  3.  Noodles: For a noodle-based twist, serve the sweet and sour meatballs over a generous bowl of soba, udon, or your favorite Asian noodles. 
  4. Sandwiches: Serve the meatballs on slider buns, pour on the peppers and onions, and top with extra sauce.

How To Freeze Meatballs and Sauce

  1. Allow the meatballs and sauce to cool completely.
  2. Place the cooled meatballs in a freezer-safe container or bag.
  3. Pour the sauce over the meatballs, leaving some space for expansion.
  4. Seal the container or bag tightly and label it with the date and contents. Allow the meatballs and sauce to cool completely.
  5. Portion the meatballs and sauce into meal-sized quantities.
  6. Place the cooled meatballs in a freezer-safe container or bag.
  7. Pour the sauce over the meatballs, leaving some space for expansion.
  8. Seal the container or bag tightly and label it with the date and contents.
  9. Place in the freezer, storing flat. The meatballs will remain fresh for 2 – 3 months in a freezer. 

Thawing Tips: It is best to thaw frozen meatballs and sauce overnight in the refrigerator. Then they can be reheated in the oven, stovetop, or microwave. 

Meatballs For A Crowd

Need a big batch to feed a crowd? You can easily change the number of servings in the recipe card below by tapping 2x or 3x. The ingredient measurements will automatically double or triple. You can then tap print and there you have it, a recipe for a crowd.

sweet and sour meatballs recipe in a curved dish with toothpicks in some meatballs
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Saucy Sweet and Sour Meatballs Recipe; Easy Slow Cooker

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 4 hours
Total Time: 4 hours 10 minutes
Servings: 6
These sweet and sour meatballs are a mouth-watering combination of tender meatballs, juicy pineapple chunks, and colorful bell peppers, all simmered in a delicious blend of sweet BBQ and teriyaki sauce. Preparing them is a breeze; it only requires 10 minutes of prep time, and your slow cooker takes care of the rest. You can serve these delicious Hawaiian meatballs as a main dish over rice or as a simple appetizer at your next party.

Note: Be sure to read through the recipe’s post for tips and details about this recipe.

Ingredients
 

  • 1 1/2 pounds frozen meatballs, approximately 30 meatballs
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, seeded, cored, and cut into square bite-size pieces
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded, cored, and cut into square bite-size pieces
  • 1 onion, small sweet onion, cut into square bite-size pieces
  • 20 ounce pineapple, 20 ounces can pineapple chunks in juice
  • 1/3 cup teriyaki sauce
  • 1 cup BBQ sauce
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch

Instructions
 

  • Slice the bell peppers into even, square bite-size pieces. Peel the onion and cut it into bite-size squares.
    1 yellow bell pepper, 1 red bell pepper, 1 onion
  • Drain the pineapple juice into a jar or small container with a tight-fitting lid. Place it in the refrigerator for later use.
    20 ounce pineapple
  • In a large bowl, combine the bell peppers, onion, pineapple chunks, teriyaki sauce, and BBQ sauce. Stir well to combine all the ingredients.
    1/3 cup teriyaki sauce, 1 cup BBQ sauce
  • Place the frozen meatballs into the slow cooker.
    1 1/2 pounds frozen meatballs
  • Pour the mixed vegetables, fruit, and sauce over the meatballs. Stir well to coat the meatballs.
  • Place the lid on the slow cooker and set the cooking temperature on high. Cook for 4 hours.
  • Thirty minutes before the cooking time is complete, mix 2/3 cup of reserved pineapple juice with the cornstarch in a jar. Srew on a tight-fitting lid. Shake well to form a smooth slurry.
    2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • Pour the slurry mixture over the sweet and sour meatballs. Stir the sauce with a large spoon to incorporate the cornstarch slurry.
  • Place the lid back on the slow cooker and continue to cook on high for 30 minutes. The sauce will thicken during this time.

Notes

Variation Ideas
Spice It Up: Want to add a little kick to your sweet and sour meatballs? During the last step of thickening the sauce, stir in 1/2 teaspoon of chili flakes. If you’re feeling adventurous, toss in some chopped Cowboy Candy (Pickled Jalapenos) or a dash of Sriracha sauce for that extra heat.
Veggies: Take your meatballs to the next level by adding some extra veggies. Consider throwing in some mushrooms, broccoli florets, or sliced carrots. 
Sauce: Planning to serve these meatballs for dinner? Double up on the BBQ and teriyaki sauce! This way, you’ll have plenty of that delicious sauce to drizzle over a bed of fluffy rice. It’s the perfect way to make your meal even more flavorful and satisfying.
 
Serving: 1g, Calories: 130kcal, Carbohydrates: 31g, Protein: 2g, Fat: 0.4g, Saturated Fat: 0.05g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 0.04g, Sodium: 861mg, Potassium: 305mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 21g, Vitamin A: 769IU, Vitamin C: 108mg, Calcium: 32mg, Iron: 1mg
Cuisine: American
Course: Appetizer
Author: Gina Dickson

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