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George’s Barbecue Sauce Meatballs

Follow our step-by-step, photo illustrated recipe to make this quick and easy appetizer. We’re featuring North Carolina’s very own George’s Barbecue Sauce to add a bit of a twist to the standard cocktail meatball appetizer made with sauce and grape jelly. You’ll love the difference that George’s will make. Printable recipe included.

George’s Barbecue Sauce Meatball Appetizers recipe.

It’s always exciting when a company reaches out to me here on Taste of Southern. It just let’s me know that folks are finding our recipes and that companies consider we might be a good fit for doing some work together. That’s pretty awesome in my book.

Just a couple of days ago, Wendy Perry contacted me about doing a recipe and promotion here on Taste of Southern using George’s Barbecue Sauces. George’s has offered to provide one Taste of Southern reader with a Holiday Gift Pack of THREE barbecue sauces, and hopefully we can get it to you before Christmas. We’ll try at least.

Wendy Perry is the “Marketing and Social Media Maven” at George’s Barbecue Sauce over in Nashville, North Carolina. That’s right, North Carolina has it’s own Nashville. Take THAT Tennessee.

Wendy works with Our State Magazine, has her own website, and is a Nekkid throw cooker. She’s a culinary adventurist, home economist, cooking class instructor, personal chef, caterer, food stylist, and lots of other things all rolled up into one. You’ll have to visit her site to find out about her way of “throw cooking.”

Anyway, Wendy contacted me about doing a recipe featuring one of their sauces. I was glad to participate, and happy to give you the chance to win one of their Christmas Gift Packs.

With Christmas right around the corner, I opted to do a little bit of a switch on one of our most famous Southern appetizers.

Cocktail meatballs, submerged in a mix of chili sauce and grape jelly, show up at just about every type of get together held here in the South. It’s for good reason though, they’re quick, easy, and DELICIOUS. You can cook and prepare them any number of ways.

I’m making some really quick and easy meatballs from scratch. It’s just what I do, but you could certainly use frozen. I’m also cooking them in my favorite cast iron skillet. You could bake them in the oven, toss them in the crock pot, the choice is yours. Either way, I just hope you’ll give them a try.

You could use the same sauce with those Little Smokie’s Sausages, cut up weiners, sausage balls, and more. But, let’s not get carried away and cause a lot of confusion. Try our meatballs first, then let the wheels start to turn on how you can make this recipe your very own.

Instead of using chili sauce, we’re using a bottle of George’s Original Sauce. You could select their HOT, or their SPECIAL sauce, again, it’s your choice. I’m just trying to help you get started.

I think you’ll love the new flavor that George’s makes to the recipe. It will be something a bit “different” that you guest’s might not be expecting. They’ll love it, and they’ll love you for making it.

I was no stranger to George’s Barbecue Sauces. My niece used George’s in her restaurant over in Apex a few years back, and I’ve used it for grilling chicken, pork, and other goodies for years.

We’ll never know how many whole hogs have been basted, grilled, and sauced with George’s Sauces. Older brother sold it by the gallon in his grocery store for years. It’s made right here in North Carolina, and we’re proud of it.

Great big THANK YOU’S go out to Wendy, Ashley, and all the staff over at George’s for making our giveaway possible. We appreciate your confidence in Taste of Southern, and look forward to continuing to work together.  I greatly appreciate the opportunity.

So, if you’re ready for a quick and easy appetizer, grab a bottle or two of George’s, and Let’s Get Cooking!

George’s BBQ Sauce Meatballs recipe: You’ll need these ingredients… PLUS

You’ll need one bottle of your favorite George’s Sauce, and a jar of Grape Jelly.

George’s has three different types of barbecue sauces including, Original, Special, and HOT. The choice is yours, but for this recipe, I’m using the George’s Original Barbecue Sauce. I’m just not brave enough for the HOT.

To begin, crumble the beef into a large mixing bowl.

Sprinkle on the Corn Meal.

Add the Minced Onions.

NOTE: Although I don’t picture it in the step-by-step, the world needs to know that I added about 1/2 teaspoon of Garlic Powder to the above. I just like the additional layer of flavor it adds to the meat. It’s not required and totally your decision. I do have it listed in the ingredients list with the printable recipe below though.

Thank you for listening. Now, back to our regular programming.

Add the milk.

Add the Salt.

Add the Black Pepper.

Then, jump in with both hands and mix everything up really good. I had my right hand on the camera shutter button when I snapped this photo, but I did eventually squish it up with both hands to get it mixed up well. (Smile)

Use a teaspoon, or a small scoop, to measure out a small amount of the beef into your hand.

Roll this around between the palms of your hands.

Lightly press the meat mixture together as you roll it out into the shape of a ball.

Repeat the scooping and rolling process, until you’ve got all the meat mixture rolled out into lots of meatballs.

I had just over a pound of Ground Beef, and made 25 meatballs from that amount. That’s 24 to serve, and one to TEST prior to serving.

Place your favorite cast iron skillet on your stove top. Turn the heat up to Medium, and let the pan begin to warm up. Add about two Tablespoons of oil to the pan and let that warm up a bit.

Place the meatballs in the skillet. Don’t overcrowd the pan at the beginning. I’m going to let this cook down just a bit, then I’ll add more.

Keep a close watch over the meatballs as they cook. Once they’ve had a minute or two to start browning, roll them around in the pan so they don’t burn in one spot. You’ll need to keep stirring them as they brown and cook, so don’t get distracted for long.

As the first meatballs begin to brown, you can add some of the others to the pan.

Continue to stir and roll them around in the pan until they’re done. These are almost ready, but you can probably still see a few spots of pink on some of the edges. You want to be sure they are cooked all the way through, but don’t let them overcook and dry out. You can thank me later for that tip.

I’ve managed to get all 25 into the skillet at this point. You may need to lower the heat a bit as they cook but adjusting as you go is always required in cooking.

When they’re done, remove the meatballs from the skillet. Place them on some folded paper towels and let them drain.

NOTE: Raise your hand if you actually counted all the meatballs in the photo before this one, just to make sure I had 25 in the skillet. It’s OK, if you did. A little bit compulsive maybe, but okay none-the-less. (Smile)

Discard the oil and drippings that are left in the skillet. Wipe it out with a paper towel and return it to the stove top.

Add the entire bottle of George’s Sauce to the skillet. Heat should be set back to Medium at this point.

Add the entire jar of Grape Jelly to the George’s Barbecue Sauce.

Stir the Grape Jelly until it’s fully melted in the skillet.

Add the meatballs back into the skillet and let simmer, uncovered, for about 15 minutes.

Your George’s Barbecue Sauce Meatballs are now done. You can serve them immediately, or cover the pan and keep warm in your oven at about 225 degrees.

You can easily double the recipe for making the meatballs in this recipe. You’ll have plenty of sauce for another batch or two, so that shouldn’t be a problem. Any leftover sauce can be allowed to cool then frozen for later use. It’s just that good.


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