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Crockpot Meatball Recipe (Saucy Simmered Perfection)

Crockpot Meatball Recipe
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Crockpot Special Meatball Recipe
Juicy beef meatballs cooked to perfection in a savory pasta sauce, flavored with Italian seasonings and a hint of garlic and red pepper flakes. Perfect for a comforting Italian-inspired meal.

Hello there, fellow food enthusiasts! Austin here, ready to share one of my all-time favorite recipes: Crockpot Meatballs. If there’s one thing I love, it’s a dish that’s easy to prepare but still packs a punch of flavor, and these meatballs fit the bill perfectly.

This is my favorite recipe to serve for dinner every time I have enough time to plan freely for our guests. Moreover, it also brings me compliments from them and some of them even ask me about the recipe.

Whether you’re cooking up a storm for a family dinner or hosting a casual get-together with friends, this recipe is sure to be a hit. With just a handful of simple ingredients and your trusty crockpot, you’ll have tender, juicy meatballs swimming in a savory sauce that’ll have everyone coming back for seconds. So, grab your apron, and let’s dive into the deliciousness together. Trust me, once you try these crockpot meatballs, they’ll become a regular in your meal rotation. You can also serve it with my Homemade Corn Tortillas for a full meal.

Overview: How To Make Crockpot Meatballs?

Crockpot Meatball Recipe

Hey y’all, Austin here with a mouthwatering crockpot meatball recipe that’ll have you drooling in no time. First up, we’re gonna mix together all the ingredients for the meatballs, then shape them up and pop them into the slow cooker.

Next comes the sauce – garlic, red pepper flakes if you like a little kick – pour that goodness over the meatballs. Now, the magic happens as we let ’em cook on high for a couple hours until they’re tender and flavorful. Once they’re done, sprinkle some Parmesan and parsley on top for that extra oomph.

And here’s the best part: you can serve these babies up however you like – over pasta, stuffed into a sub, you name it. So go ahead, dig in, and savor every delicious bite.

Crockpot Meatball Recipe

Crockpot Special Meatball Recipe

Juicy beef meatballs cooked to perfection in a savory pasta sauce, flavored with Italian seasonings and a hint of garlic and red pepper flakes. Perfect for a comforting Italian-inspired meal.
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Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: American, Italian
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours
5 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 30 minutes
Calories: 285kcal
Author: Austin Carter
Servings: 4


  • 5-quarter or larger slow cooker
  • Large mixing bowl
  • Fork and Spoon


  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 3 tbsp finely chopped fresh
  • 2 tbsp finely grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 jar prepared tomato pasta sauce
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes 
  • 1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 tbsp milk of choice or water
  • 3 tbsp finely chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 tsp Italian Seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
  • 2  large eggs
  • 3 garlic cloves minced


  • Combine beef, panko, Worcestershire sauce, milk, herbs, spices, and eggs in a bowl.
  • Shape mixture into meatballs, avoiding compacting.
  • Place meatballs in greased slow cooker.
  • Pour pasta sauce over meatballs, sprinkle with garlic and red pepper flakes.
  • Cook on HIGH for 2-2 1/2 hours, turning meatballs halfway.
  • Sprinkle with Parmesan and parsley before serving.


Serving: 3g | Calories: 285kcal | Carbohydrates: 19g | Protein: 30g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 0.5g | Cholesterol: 154mg | Potassium: 1071mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 1198IU | Vitamin C: 18mg | Calcium: 120mg | Iron: 6mg
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Time For The Tips!

  1. Don’t over-mix: Use your hands to combine the ingredients until just mixed. Working the mixture too much can result in tougher meatballs.
  2. Wet your hands: Before rolling the meatballs, wet your hands with water. This helps prevent sticking.
  3. Choose 80/20 beef: For the juiciest and most tender crockpot meatballs, opt for 80/20 beef if available.
  4. Brown the meatballs: Searing the meatballs before adding them to the slow cooker helps trap the juices inside. Brown them under the broiler on a sheet tray for a nice caramelization.
  5. Try baked meatballs: Short on time? Consider making my Easy 30 Minute Meatball Recipe for a quick weeknight meal.
  6. Use a cookie scoop: To easily portion out uniformly round meatballs, use a cookie scoop. This saves time and ensures consistency.

Try Possible Variations!

Crockpot Meatball Recipe

Here are some helpful variations to elevate this crockpot meatball recipe:

  1. Spicy Kick: Add a diced jalapeño or a dash of hot sauce to the meatball mixture for an extra kick of heat.
  2. Cheesy Surprise: Insert a small cube of mozzarella or cheddar cheese into the center of each meatball before shaping them for a gooey, cheesy surprise when you bite into them.
  3. Herb Infusion: Experiment with different herbs such as basil, oregano, or thyme to customize the flavor profile of the meatballs.
  4. Vegetarian Twist: Substitute the ground beef with a mixture of cooked lentils, mushrooms, and breadcrumbs for a tasty vegetarian alternative.
  5. Asian Fusion: Swap out the Italian seasoning for soy sauce, ginger, and garlic in the meatball mixture, and use a teriyaki or sweet chili sauce instead of pasta sauce for an Asian-inspired twist.
  6. Leaner Option: Use ground turkey or chicken instead of beef for a leaner version of the meatballs. Add a bit of olive oil to the mixture to keep them moist.
  7. Whole Grain Goodness: Replace the panko breadcrumbs with crushed whole grain crackers or oats for a healthier twist with added fiber.
  8. Saucy Variety: Experiment with different types of pasta sauces such as marinara, Alfredo, or vodka sauce to change up the flavor profile of the dish.

These variations will add excitement and variety to your crockpot meatball recipe, keeping it fresh and interesting for your taste buds!

What to Serve with Crockpot Meatballs?

Storing and Reheating!

  1. Store: If you have leftover crockpot meatballs, let them cool down and store them in an airtight container. They’ll stay fresh in the fridge for 3-4 days or in the freezer for 2-3 months.
  2. Reheat: The simplest way is to use the microwave. However, for the best flavor and texture, the oven is recommended. Bake at 350°F for 8-10 minutes.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q: Can I Make Gluten-Free Crockpot Meatballs?

A: Sure, by replacing panko breadcrumbs with gluten-free ones you can get gluten-free crockpot meatballs.

Q: Can You Put Frozen Meatballs In The Crock Pot?

A: I prefer using frozen ones because they can be added directly from the freezer to the Crock Pot without needing to thaw them first.

Q: Can I make the meatballs ahead of time and refrigerate them before cooking?

A: Yes, you can prepare the meatballs ahead of time and refrigerate them until you’re ready to cook. Just be sure to bring them to room temperature before placing them in the slow cooker.

Q: How do I know when the meatballs are done cooking?

A: The meatballs should be cooked through and no longer pink in the center. You can also slice one in half to check for doneness.

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