Smokey Sweet & Sour BBQ Meatballs 

Smokey Sweet & Sour BBQ Meatballs 


1 ½ pounds ground chuck 

¼ cup panko breadcrumbs 

1 egg, beaten 

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard 

Zest of 1 lemon, grated on a microplane 

1 tablespoon minced chives 

1 tablespoon finely chopped basil leaves 

2 garlic cloves, minced

Sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper 

2 tablespoons olive oil 

Sweet & Sour BBQ Sauce

1 tablespoon olive oil 

½ medium onion, finely diced 

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 cup packed dark brown sugar 

1 cup ketchup 

¾ cup your favourite bbq sauce 

2 tablespoons vinegar 

2 tablespoons soy sauce 

Juice of 1 lemon 

When ready to cook, start the Traeger according to grill instructions. Set the temperature to 375 degrees F and preheat, lid closed, for 10 – 15 minutes. 

In a large bowl, combine the beef, panko, egg, dijon, zest, chives, basil, garlic, and season well with sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper. Mix well, then divide into small 1-tablespoon-ish-sized meatballs. Heat a large, high-sided skillet over medium-heat and, working in batches, brown the meatballs on all sides (we’re not cooking the meatballs through, just adding a nice bit of caramelization). Remove with a slotted spoon, then continue working away until all the meatballs are browned and glorious. Perfect. 

At the same time, heat a second skillet over medium-heat and pour in the olive oil. Add the onion, season with a pinch of sea salt, and cook until softened and translucent, about 5 – 7 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for an additional 45 seconds, then remove from the heat. 

Sauce time. Grab a large bowl, then combine the cooked onion and garlic, brown sugar, ketchup, bbq sauce, vinegar, soy, and lemon juice, and mix well. Gently toss the meatballs and sauce together, then arrange in a large high-sided pan. Transfer to the preheated grill and cook for about 40 – 45 minutes, or until the sauce is thick and beautiful, the meatballs are cooked through, and your back deck smells like heaven on earth. 

I love to serve these on crusty baguette with sliced brie and cranberry sauce. Delicious.


  1. Melissa says:

    Thank you, for sharing the recipe. I can hardly wait to make this.

  2. Timos says:

    Ty I am going to try this!

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