Sweet And Sour Meatballs Recipe

These sweet and sour meatballs are a great side for rice and veggies or even a meatball stir fry!

Meatballs are a classic party food. Put a try out with some toothpicks, and most of your guests will be quite happy.

Clean Eating Sweet & Sour Meatballs

But these are also great for a special dinner any time. There’s just something about a tray of meatballs that ways, “This is a special dinner. Something out of the ordinary“, don’t you think?

This idea actually came from my favorite store, Trader Joe’s. One of the clerks there recommended the combination to my mother-in-law. She told me about it and I just could not get the idea out of my head. So a couple weeks later, I tried a clean version. My or my. It was definitely a great dinner! Yum!


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Clean Eating Sweet & Sour Meatballs

Sweet And Sour Meatballs

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Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American, Asian
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 48 meatballs
Calories: 49kcal


Meatball Ingredients:

  • 3 lb. ground turkey
  • 2 tbsp. onion powder
  • 2 tbsp. garlic powder

Glaze ingredients:

  • 9 oz. jar apricot 100% fruit spread (no sugar added)
  • 2 tbsp. low sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp. honey


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper, or spray them with a light coat of olive oil using an oil sprayer.
  • In a large mixing bowl, combine the turkey, onion powder and garlic powder. Mix well.
  • Using your hands, roll small, walnut sized meatballs and place on a cookie sheet.
  • Bake for approximately 20-30 minutes, or until the meatballs are cooked through. A meat thermometer should read between 165-175 degrees F.
  • While they are in the oven, put all the glaze ingredients into a small pot and warm over low-medium heat. Stir constantly.
  • When the meatballs are done, put them into a large mixing bowl (please don't burn yourself!) and pour the glaze over them. Mix gently to coat the meatballs.
  • Note: If you cannot find apricot fruit spread, pick any flavor you'd like, so long as it's 100% fruit. It will still be really tasty.


Please note that the nutrition data given here is a ballpark figure. Exact data is not possible.


Serving: 1meatball | Calories: 49kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 16mg | Sodium: 39mg | Potassium: 99mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 18IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 5mg | Iron: 1mg

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  1. This is the most awesome site. After all these years of working I’m retired and learning to cook!! Hubby is a great cook. This is all mine. Everything about it – including the recipes – is crystal clear and user friendly. And did I mention fun-neeee?! Can you tell I’m a definite fan? And a very grateful one. For me, this is an answer to prayer.

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Linda – Thanks so much! I learned a lot of cooking on my own. It’s a wonderful creative process if you can truly learn to enjoy it. You can do it! Go girl!!

  2. Stephanie says:

    These definitely sound yummy! I have found so many recipes I want to try from your site. Slowly trying to get my family to eat cleaner 75% of the time.

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Stephanie – You can do it! Just take it one step at a time!

  3. Skinny Fat Kid says:

    These look delish! Could probably serve over some brown rice with veggies to make it a meal!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      SFK – Yes! That would be yummy! 🙂

  4. Tiffany, I’m really enjoying your recipes. We eat quiet clean but it’s always nice to get new ideas. My girls claim to hate ground turkey but I’ll bet they’d love it with a sweet fruit jam on top.

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Michelle – I bet they would! Finger/party foods like these are usually pretty kid friendly.

  5. Kelly Cain says:

    Made these for dinner tonight! They were awesome and soooo easy to make!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Kelly – Fabulous!!! I’m so happy you enjoyed them!

  6. Ashley Berna says:

    These are perfect! I didnt have apricot fruit spread so I used orange. So GOOD! Not to mention easy. I had planned on making Cod tonight but realized it was still mostly frozen, so I looked to see what I could make. This was so easy to make and i had everything on hand : )

  7. Anyone who is considering making these little balls of goodness….. DO IT!! So yummy, so fun and so quick and easy! I had no onion powder or garlic powder, so I just used an onion and a few cloves of garlic grated into the meat. YUMMY!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Charlie – LOL!!! Little balls of goodness, love it! LOL!! Glad you enjoyed them! 😉

  8. Would this also work with grassfed ground beef?

    1. graciouspantry says:

      I don’t see why not!

  9. So one of our favorite meals used to be baked sweet and sour chicken. Think the glaze would work on chicken? I wonder about the spices though.. (Or do you have a clean sweet/sour chicken recipe?) 🙂

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      I’m sure it could be tweaked to work. I don’t have a recipe for that yet, but it’s in the works. 🙂

  10. Sweet!! Maybe ill just wait til you post it. 😉

  11. Do you think this would work in the crock pot?

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Heather – You could cook the meatballs in the slow cooker and then stir in the glaze at the last minute, yes.

  12. so I just made this (they are cooking as we speak) and theres a lot of leftovers, what is the best way to store them? and how long you think they would be good for? thanks!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Kristen – For any cooked meat, it’s okay in the fridge for up to 3 days. After that, discard or freeze. These will freeze just fine for up to 6 months.

  13. Okay so these look delish and I just made them and they weren’t so good

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Nichole – I’m sorry you didn’t care for them! What didn’t you like about them?

  14. I’m sorry it all didn’t post. The glaze was great! The actual meat balls were dry I cooked to internal heat 165. Just wondering if there’s something I could do next time to soften them. I’m new to eating healthy so I’m unclear. Thanks!!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Nichole – No problem! You could try mixing an egg into the meatballs. That will help. Different meats have different amounts of water. So some variances like this will happen. My turkey probably had more water in it than yours. At least that’s my guess…

  15. This looks like a great recipe! Is it possible to make this crockpot friendly? I have gluten-free and organic meatballs in my freezer and didn’t know if I could use them…I think they’re already cooked? Thanks!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Amanda – I’m not sure I understand the question. Are you asking about this particular recipe, or about making different meatballs in a slow cooker? I would have no idea if your meatballs are cooked. You would have to check the package.