I've made my meatballs from scratch before and they turned out pretty good. But, as anyone who has made a meatball knows getting the balance of texture and moistness to be just right can sometimes be a bit tricky. Add to that my three kids who are usually in the throws of mutiny around dinner time and I've become a total cheater. Believe it or not, our favorite brand is Great Value. The Walmart generic. The homestyle kind. Italian tastes weird with any sauce but marinara. The homestyle is great with any type of sauce. They are moist and really flavorful. Of course, you can use any type you prefer.
This recipe is super simple and was a huge hit. I paired it with Roast Broccoli. If you've never had roast broccoli, you have done yourself a huge disservice. Even broccoli haters will love it.
Sweet and Sour Meatballs
- Put your favorite meatballs in a greased 9x13 pan. (If using fresh, you don't have to cook them before you bake with the sauce, just toss them in raw. If using frozen, put them in frozen and bake for the suggested time at the suggested temp. - usually 40 minutes if preparing with a sauce).
½ c brown sugar
¼ c white vinegar
1 tsp yellow mustard
¼ c barbecue sauce
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
Heat sauce ingredients to dissolve brown sugar (I do this in the microwave in a glass measuring cup. Takes about a minute.). Pour sauce over meatballs. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-40 minutes. Serve over rice.
I doubled the sauce because I wanted enough for left overs. Plus, I didn't want it to dry out during the baking time. I put quite a few meatballs in there, but left a little room between them so they would bake and not steam. I also checked on them a couple of times and gave them a shake and quick stir to make sure they were evenly coated with sauce and the tops didn't dry out.
Cut up fresh broccoli leaving a little bit of the stem on the florets. You can cut them into whatever size you want, but you don't want to chop it into squares. You want it to be almost stick shape.
Put on a baking sheet and coat with olive oil. Add a good amount of salt and pepper. Toss to coat evenly.
Bake at 425 for about 15 minutes until the edges are caramelized and a little brown. (see picture)
*For this meal, I was baking the meatballs at 375. I wanted the two dishes to come out of the oven at the same time so I just threw the broccoli on the lower rack (it's hotter down there when baking and it will give a crispier finish) when the meatballs had 20 minutes left. The lower position and longer baking time worked out great.
*I've included a link that will take you to the original recipe above.