Slow Cooker Sweet and Sour Cocktail Meatballs (low-FODMAP recipe)
Mini cocktail meatballs are the perfect game day snack. Why?
- You can make them ahead
- They feed a crowd
- You serve 'em straight from the slow cooker
- Meatballs - enough said
Low-FODMAP AND Less Sugar
Tasty and convenient as they are, it's hard to find a recipe that's low-FODMAP and healthy. Most call for a few bottles of high-sugar condiments like chile sauce, ketchup, and even an entire jar of jam.
You don't need sugary processed ingredients to make great meatballs for your super bowl party. The base of this sauce is plain, simple canned tomato sauce, seasoned up with spices, tamari, and garlic oil.
The sweet and sour kick comes from vinegar and just 1/3 cup of brown sugar in a recipe that makes 15 appetizer servings - pretty good nutrition stats!
To make delicate, tender meatballs it's important not to over mix, but also to choose ground meat that's not TOO lean. I used 85% lean ground turkey and a bit of beef to make it interesting. Any combination of turkey, beef, or pork would be delicious.
Make These FODMAP Appetizers Anytime
While they're a great football snack, these cocktail meatballs work year round. I wouldn't be sad to serve these at a summer cookout.
Since you make them in the slow cooker, you can keep them warm and serve them straight from the slow cooker. Or fancy it up with a pretty serving bowl - they'll disappear fast.
Do you have a favorite low-FODMAP appetizer? Do you struggle with finding party food that's appealing AND belly friendly? Let me know in the comments!
Sweet and Sour Cocktail Meatballs (low-FODMAP)
If you can’t find gluten-free breadcrumbs, regular ones are okay in this recipe because up to 24 grams of white bread (1 slice) is considered a low-FODMAP serving. You’ll be well under that if you stick to the meatball serving size. You can also make your own bread crumbs with finely ground toasted bread. Plain canned tomato sauce is usually free of onion and garlic, but always check ingredients.
Makes about 60
1 serving = 4 meatballs
Cooking spray or oil
1 large egg
1 ½ lbs ground turkey (85% lean)
½ lb ground beef (80-85% lean)
½ cup (80 grams) fine gluten-free breadcrumbs (see note above)
2 tsp salt
1 ½ tsp paprika
1 ½ tsp ground ginger
1 ½ tsp ancho chile powder
½ tsp ground mustard powder
½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
15-oz can plain tomato sauce
⅓ cup packed light brown sugar
¼ cup red wine or white wine vinegar, plus additional to taste
2 tsp reduced sodium tamari or soy sauce
2 tsp garlic-infused oil
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground mustard powder
2 tsp cornstarch
3 tbsp water
Chopped fresh chives for garnish
1. Preheat oven to 350F and arrange racks in upper and lower thirds. Line 2 large rimmed baking sheets with foil. If you have oven-proof metal racks that fit inside your baking sheets, use them and coat with cooking spray or oil; otherwise, generously coat the foil with cooking spray or oil.
2. In a large bowl, whisk the egg. Add remaining meatball ingredients and gently mix until combined (over mixing causes meatballs to be tough). Roll meat mixture into balls, about 1-inch in diameter. Place on prepared baking sheets. Bake until meatballs are lightly browned, 20 minutes, switching positions of the baking sheets about halfway through.
3. Meanwhile, add all the sauce ingredient BEFORE cornstarch to a slow cooker and stir to combine. Add meatballs. Cover and cook on low for 1 hour and 40 minutes. Stir gently about halfway through cooking time.
4. In a small bowl, stir the cornstarch and water until cornstarch dissolves. Add to slow cooker and stir to combine. Continue cooking for 20 minutes or until sauce thickens slightly. Taste and check the seasoning, adding additional salt if desired. Add additional vinegar if you like a bigger sour kick. You can sprinkle with chives and serve from the slow cooker (set to warm) or transfer to a serving bowl.