Sweet And Sour Meatballs (With Pineapple)

sweet and sour meatballs with pineapple

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Working ladies like me are often striving to save their time in the kitchen while striving to serve nutritious meals to their families. So here I am with an exciting and easy recipe for meatballs. I love to eat meaty foods, let us prepare a good meal to enjoy. These meatballs are coated with a lip-smacking sweet and sour sauce and loaded with vegetables and tangy pineapples. I like to serve them with boiled rice, but you can also serve these meatballs with spaghetti to create Spaghetti Bolognese.

These Sweet and Sour meatballs are one of the best potluck dinner ideas. These balls can be made and frozen for later use. When you plan to serve something nutritious and wholesome for the Potluck party side dish, just reheat your frozen meatballs, prepare some sauce, and serve right away. If you have some aversion to pineapples, you can give your recipe a twist and make meatballs with grape jelly and chili sauce. However, this recipe is a bit on the spicier side.

Ingredient Notes:


For making meatballs, I prefer minced beef. But this is up to your preference. If you are not so much into red meat, you can use boneless chicken or turkey, and process them in a food processor to make the mince. Another idea is to put the meat and all the ingredients of meatballs in a food processor and then make the mince. This blends the flavor of onion and garlic so well within the meat and also allows to make smooth textured balls.

prepare Meatballs

Egg and Breadcrumbs

The eggs and breadcrumbs serve as binding agents to the meatballs. Sometimes, I skip the egg whites and add yolks only, but it is better to add whole eggs. The egg gives a nice golden outside to the fried meatballs while breadcrumbs make a slightly crisp exterior coating. You can substitute the breadcrumbs with 1 tbsp roasted gram flour.

Additional Ingredients

In my recipe, I have kept it simple, adding only salt, black pepper, and chopped onions. However, if you want to make them spicier, add chopped green chilies, chopped fresh coriander, and chopped fresh mint too. For a more Asian-style recipe, add a bit of coriander powder, whole all-spice powder, and cumin powder.

The sauce

If you often prepare Chinese gravy dishes, making this sauce is a 2-minute game. The base is just regular vinegar and tomato ketchup. I have added capsicum, carrots, and onion, but feel free to add any other veggies you like. The meatballs also go well with mushrooms, sliced green olives, boiled corn, green peas, etc. thicken the gravy as per your liking with the help of cornflour slurry.

The side

Meatballs with sweet and sour sauce go well with boiled rice, cumin rice, or garlic rice. You can also serve it with your favorite sort of pasta. Spaghetti Bolognese is just another variation of the classic Meatballs. If nothing else is available, you can serve the meatballs with Asian-style tortillas or flatbreads, known as naans.

Tips to make the best meatballs

  • Chop the onions very finely before adding them to mince, or process them in a food process. Large chunks of onion may become soggy and cause the breakage of meatballs when added to the sauce.
  • The ideal size for cooking the best meatballs is 2 inches in diameter. However, you can make some larger ones if you like.
  • Use only lean and boneless cuts of meat to make the best, tender meatballs.
  • Be sure to add milk and breadcrumbs mixture or one small egg as a binding agent.
  • If you cannot think of any summer potluck ideas, Sweet and Sour meatballs with Garlic rice are a perfect fix.
  • The best part is that you can try these meatballs in slow cooker.

Recipe Ingredients

For meatballs

  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 raw egg
  • ½ cup onion finely chopped onions
  • ½ cup breadcrumbs
  • 2 tsp salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper powder

For sweet and sour sauce

  • 1/3 cup vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic
  • 1 cup pineapple cut into chunks
  • 1 cup cubed red and green capsicum
  • 1 onion cubed
  • 1 cup water
  • 3 tbsp. Tomato ketchup or puree
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup sliced carrots
  • 1 tbsp cornflour mixed with 3 tbsp water
  • 8 tbsp cooking oil

How to make the Sweet and Sour Meatballs?

Step one: Prep the mince

Buy minced 80% lean meat, or the boneless meat chunks and put them in the bowl of the food processor. Process until the meat is finely ground and resembles store-bought mince.

In the same bowl, add egg, onions, salt, breadcrumbs, and black pepper powder. Process for one minute to combine all the ingredients thoroughly.

preparing Meatballs

Let it sit in the refrigerator for 5 minutes.

Grease your hands with oil. Use a scoop spoon to shape the meatballs perfectly between your palms. Place them on a lined baking tray.

mixing ingredients for preparing Meatballs

If you have brought minced beef or chicken, take it out of the refrigerator and put it into the mixing bowl. Add all the ingredients and mix thoroughly. Make the meatballs in the same way as mentioned above.

prepare Meatballs

Step two: Cooking the meatballs

The first method is to fry the meatballs. Take a medium-sized wok and pour 6 to 8 tbsp cooking oil. Let it heat on medium-high until the oil is ready for frying.

round shaped meatballs

Reduce heat to medium flame and add meatballs one by one. Fry until the meatball gets a crisp and nicely golden exterior.

frying the Meatballs

The second option is to bake the meatballs. Preheat the oven to 375°F. When the meatballs are ready to bake, reduce heat to 350°F and bake for 8 to 10 minutes or until nicely golden on the top.

Take them out on a serving platter. Cover and set aside.

deep fried meatballs

Step 3: Preparing the sauce

Cut all the vegetables into cubes.

Sweet And Sour Meatballs ingredients

In a saucepan, add 2 tbsp of cooking oil and heat for a while.

Saute chopped garlic. Add the cubed onions, carrots, and capsicums for 2 to 3 minutes and stir fry on medium-high flame.

stir frying vegetables

Add the pineapple chunks and keep frying for one minute.

When you can smell the aroma, pour in the vinegar, tomato puree, and brown sugar. Mix well so that the sugar dissolves and the vinegar combines with tomato puree.

stir frying vegetables and pineapple

Pour one cup of water. Allow to boil over medium-high heat.

Reduce heat and let the sauce simmer for 5 minutes.

Dissolve one tbsp cornflour in 3 tbsp water to make a slurry. Pour this into the sauce and keep stirring until a nice, thick consistency is achieved.

simmering vegetables and pineapple

Remove from heat. Pour this sauce on the meatballs and serve hot with Boiled rice or any side of your choice.

simmering meatballs and sauce

Storage instructions

Meatballs make a great make-and-freeze meal. Here are some instructions for their proper storage.

round shaped meatballs

Freezing and Refrigeration

Make the meatballs as per the instructions. Allow them to cool down thoroughly. Place them in an airtight container, preferably lined with parchment paper. Freeze them in the freezer for up to 2 months, and in the refrigerator for up to 3 to 4 days.


The most convenient method to reheat the meatballs is to use a microwave oven. Defrost in a refrigerator or over the counter, and then reheat in the microwave for 1 minute.

You can also use the oven for reheating. Reheating in the oven retains the maximum flavor and the original texture. Bake the frozen meatballs in an oven-safe dish for about 8 to 10 minutes at 350°F.

What to serve with sweet and sour meatballs?

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the secret to making the most tender meatballs?

The secret to making the most tender meatball is to maintain the meat and bread crumb ratio. Professional chefs recommend using 50% meat and 50% bread. Another trick is to soak the bread in water and milk to keep it soft and moist. During the cooking procedure, beef, meat or veal tends to get tough, but the bread remains moist, resulting in soft, tender but well-formed meatballs. This also enables you to skip eggs, especially if you are on an eggless diet.

Should I allow the meatballs to sit for a while before cooking?

This depends on the cooking technique. If you want to fry the meatballs, you do not need to rest them in a refrigerator. However, if you intend to bake them, put the prepared meatballs in the refrigerator for 1 hour to set them. They will retain their shape and become tender during baking.

Why are my meatballs tough?

Lack of moisture or any binding ingredient makes the meatballs tough. Add one slightly whipped egg, or bread soaked in milk. You can also add breadcrumbs and 2 tsp of milk. Without moisture, the meat tends to shrink and gets tough during the cooking process, resulting in harder meatballs.

Is it okay to put the raw meatballs in the sauce?

If you want to add raw meatballs to the sauce, do it before adding the cornflour slurry. Cover and let the meatballs cook for a while in the sauce so that they do not end up raw on the serving platter. However, it is recommended to slightly brown them with a little bit of oil in a skillet before adding them to the sauce, to give them a nice brown texture on the outside.

sweet and sour meatballs recipe
sweet and sour meatballs with pineapple

Best Sweet And Sour Meatballs (With Pineapple)

Adalynn Ward
One of the easiest make-and-freeze meals is sweet and sour meatballs. They just get ready when you are and give a finger-licking experience to your family.
4.86 from 7 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Course Dinner, Main Course
Servings 6 meatballs


For Meatballs

  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 raw egg
  • ½ cup finely chopped onions
  • ½ cup breadcrumbs
  • 2 tsp salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper powder

For Sweet And Sour Sauce

  • cup vinegar
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped garlic
  • 1 cup pineapple cut into chunks
  • 1 cup cubed red and green capsicum
  • 1 medium sized onion chopped in small cubes
  • 1 cup water
  • 3 tbsp Tomato ketchup or puree
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ½ cup sliced carrots
  • 1 tbsp cornflour mixed with 3 tbsp water
  • 8 tbsp cooking oil

How to Make?

For Meatballs

  • In a mixing bowl, mix the ground beef, egg, and all the ingredients for the meatballs. Mix well.
  • With the help of a scoop spoon, scoop the meat out and shape it into small balls.
  • Heat 6 tbsp of cooking oil in a wok.
  • Fry the meatballs on medium heat until the outside turns nicely golden.
  • Remove from pan and place on a serving platter. Set aside.

For Sweet And Sour Sauce

  • In a saucepan, add 2 tsp of cooking oil and saute chopped garlic.
  • Stir fry the onion, carrots, and capsicum for 2 to 3 minutes on medium-high heat.
  • Add pineapple chunks and fry for one more minute.
  • Pour in the vinegar, tomato sauce, or puree, and add brown sugar. Mix well.
  • Pour in water and allow the contents to boil.
  • Add the cornflour mixture and allow to cook until a thick consistency is achieved.
  • Remove from heat. Pour the sauce over the meatballs and serve hot.


Serving: 100gCalories: 210kcalCarbohydrates: 17gProtein: 11gFat: 11gSaturated Fat: 4.5gCholesterol: 55mgSodium: 340mgSugar: 11gVitamin C: 1.2mgCalcium: 40mgIron: 2.7mg
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Hello!! My name is Adalynn I love to eat, travel, and eat some more! I am married to the man of my dreams and have a beautiful little girl whose smiles can brighten anyone’s day!