These oven-baked sausage meatballs are glazed with sweet chili sauce for a flavor combination that will have your family clamoring for more. Ready in just 30 minutes, these meatballs are sure to be a weeknight favorite.
Meatballs fall "squarely" in the comfort food category, and these sausage meatballs are no exception. These are packed with incredible flavor that satisfies every craving.
These meatballs are easy to make and bake up quickly, which means just 30 minutes stand between you and a delicious plate of cozy food.
- Rich and savory and slightly spicy.
- A sweet and spicy glaze brings a touch of the unexpected.
- Quick and easy for hassle-free mealtime.
- Perfect for game day spreads... be sure to double the recipe.
- Pork sausage - Using a combination of sweet and spicy Italian sausage adds tremendous flavor. Bulk/ground sausage is the most convenient, but I can't always find it at my local supermarket. When using link sausage, remove the casings before adding the sausage to the rest of the ingredients.
- Parmesan cheese - Grate your own cheese for optimal flavor and freshness. Pecorino Romano is also a great option.
- Breadcrumbs - I love using panko breadcrumbs. The breadcrumbs absorb the juices from the sausage while it bakes, keeping the meatballs tender and juicy.
- Water - This may seem like an unusual ingredient. Typically, milk is added to meatballs for its fat and moisture. Since sausage has plenty of fat, we just need moisture, so water works perfectly fine here.
- Sweet chili sauce - We're using this sauce to glaze the meatballs. I love Panda Express Sweet Chili Sauce.
See the recipe card for complete instructions and ingredient amounts.
- Add the breadcrumbs, egg, cheese, and seasonings to a mixing bowl. Stir to combine. Add the water and mix until the breadcrumb mixture is moistened.
- Add the sausage and mix until well blended, being careful not to overwork the mixture. If using link sausage, remove the casings before adding the sausage to the other ingredients.
- Use a cookie scoop to portion the mixture into meatballs and place them on a sheet pan lined with aluminum foil or parchment paper. Bake at 400 degrees for 10 minutes. Baste with the chili sauce and bake until the internal temperature of the meatballs reaches 160 degrees, approximately another 5-7 minutes.
- Serve on a bed of rice with extra chili sauce on the side for dipping.
- Make a double batch and serve appetizer-style on game day.
- Skip the sweet chili sauce glaze and serve with pasta and your favorite marinara sauce.
- Slice the meatballs and use them as a pizza topping.
- Mix all of the ingredients except the sausage together first. This ensures the ingredients are well-blended before mixing in the sausage. This helps to prevent overworking the meat. Overworked meat = tough meatballs.
- Use a cookie scoop to portion the meatballs. Uniformly-sized meatballs will cook evenly. A 2-tablespoon-sized scoop will yield 15 meatballs.
- For a party appetizer, portion the meatballs smaller and serve with toothpicks and extra dipping sauce.
- Customize by using chicken or turkey sausage. Add different herbs or make the meatballs extra spicy by adding red pepper flakes.
Frequently asked questions
Eggs and breadcrumbs are most commonly used to bind the meatball mixture. The breadcrumbs absorb the juices as the meatballs cook, which keeps the meatballs tender and moist.
These meatballs freeze beautifully - both cooked and uncooked. To freeze uncooked meatballs, freeze them on a parchment-lined baking sheet until firm. Then, transfer them to a freezer-safe zipper-top bag and freeze them for 2-3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator, then bake them according to the recipe directions.
To freeze cooked meatballs, cool completely. Freeze until firm then transfer to a freezer-safe zipper-top bag. Freeze for 2-3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator.
If you are lucky enough to have leftovers, these sausage meatballs will keep for 4-5 days in the fridge. Store them in an airtight container.
Microplane - My favorite tool for grating Parmesan cheese. Freshly grated is always best!
2-Tbsp Cookie scoop - Cookie scoops are ideal for forming uniformly-sized meatballs that will cook evenly.
My favorite pairings for sausage meatballs
Try these meatball recipes next
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Pork Sausage Meatballs
- ½ cup panko breadcrumbs
- 1 large egg
- ½ cup finely shredded Parmesan
- 1 tablespoon chopped parsley (or 1 teaspoon dried parsley)
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- ¼ cup lukewarm water (plus extra if needed)
- 16 ounces sweet or spicy Italian sausage
- ¼ cup sweet chili sauce (plus extra for serving)
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line a quarter sheet pan with aluminum foil or parchment paper. Set aside.
- Add the breadcrumbs, egg, Parmesan cheese, parsley, and garlic to a mixing bowl. Stir to combine.
- Add ¼ of water and mix to moisten the breadcrumb mixture.
- Add the sausage. (If using link sausage, remove and discard the casings.) Mix until well combined, being careful to not overwork the mixture. If the mixture seems dry, add more lukewarm water - 1 tablespoon at a time - until the mixture comes together.
- Using a cookie scoop, portion the mixture into meatballs. (A 2-TBSP scoop will yield 15 meatballs.) Place the meatballs on the prepared sheet pan.
- Bake for 10 minutes. Brush the chili sauce on the meatballs. Bake until the internal temperature of the meatballs reaches 160 degrees, approximately another 5-10 minutes. Serve the meatballs with extra sauce.
- To freeze uncooked meatballs, freeze them on a parchment-lined baking sheet until they are firm. Then, transfer them to a freezer-safe zipper-top bag and freeze them for 2-3 months. Thaw them overnight in the refrigerator, then bake them according to the recipe directions. To freeze cooked meatballs, cool them completely. Freeze them until firm then transfer them to a freezer-safe plastic bag. Freeze them for 2-3 months and thaw them in the refrigerator when ready to eat.
- Leftover meatballs can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 4-5 days.
Nutritional information is an estimate and will vary depending upon the exact amounts and specific ingredients used.