Brown Sugar Glazed Pork Meatballs


Brown Sugar Glazed Pork Meatballs serve as a party appetizer recipe or main course served over rice or potatoes.  With the sweet brown sugar BBQ glaze these will disappear in no time at all!

Brown Sugar Glazed Pork Meatballs serve as a party appetizer recipe or main course served over rice.  With the sweet brown sugar BBQ glaze, these will disappear in no time at all!

It’s Meatball Monday, people!  That’s not really a thing – I just made it up.  But wouldn’t you agree that meatballs can make Mondays a little more bearable?  I am fortunate enough to work from home so I don’t have to drag myself into an office on Monday morning, but I do still get up early and spend a lot of time playing “catch up” from all the work I was supposed to do over the weekend but neglected to do.  Oops!

I have made these Brown Sugar Glazed Pork Meatballs twice now and they never last long in our house.  I may have eaten about 4 portions worth of meatballs in one sitting.  Mr. Wishes and I both wolfed down our dinner like the famine was coming.  The sauce is a delicious sweet sauce that is essentially a homemade BBQ sauce.  These are great served over rice as a main course for dinner, with a side of potatoes, or bring them to your next office potluck and watch them disappear.  You can also serve these at a party warmed up with the sauce in a crock pot (more details within the recipe instructions)!

Brown Sugar Glazed Pork Meatballs recipe serve well as, football food, a party appetizer, or main course when you serve them over rice or potatoes.  The sweet glaze will win everyone over!

This is absolutely the best meatball recipe ever (and I am a huge lover of meatballs)!  Now that I know how to cook pork properly and I’m no longer afraid of it, I decided to make these awesome Brown Sugar Glazed Pork Meatballs.  How did I get over my fear, you ask?  Well, even if you didn’t ask, I will tell you.  Thanks to the National Pork Board, I went on an amazing trip to Iowa for the Pass the Pork tour earlier this month that I wrote all about in this post.  Along with the recap, I also shared my recipe for Apple Cider Pork Tenderloin that you don’t want to miss. While in Iowa, I visited a pig farm and I actually “pulled a pig”!  If you don’t know what that is, find out by revisiting my recap – I don’t want to ruin your appetites right now! Ha, ha.  Overall, visiting a pig farm (Brenneman Farm) for myself and meeting the amazing farmers and hard workers behind the pork that comes to my table forever changed my views on pork and farming.

Anyway, something that really resonated with me was the fact that the USDA recently changed their guidelines and has lowered the pork safety temperature to 145 degrees.  Because of this, pork dishes come out a lot less dry and much more enjoyable.  Now I know I can enjoy and make pork dishes as delicious as the ones I ate on that trip.  However you like your steak is how you should also be cooking your pork.  Who knew?  Life-changing, folks!  I’m so glad that I now have better knowledge of the correct cooking temperatures.  I can now be more creative with cooking pork!

You must make these Brown Sugar Glazed Pork Meatballs for your family soon – they will be singing your praises!  Also, head on over to the Pork Be Inspired website where you will find more delicious pork recipes and cooking tips. Enjoy!

Pork Meatballs recipe with Brown Sugar BBQ sauce are an easy party appetizer recipe or main course served over rice or mashed potatoes.

Brown Sugar Glazed Pork Meatballs
Recipe type: Dinner
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 20-25 meatballs
Brown Sugar Glazed Pork Meatballs serve as a party appetizer recipe or main course served over rice. Everyone will love the sweet brown sugar BBQ glaze!
  • Meatballs:
  • 2 pounds ground pork
  • Kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons chili flakes
  • 2 teaspoons fennel seeds
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • ⅔ cup tightly packed curly parsley leaves with stems, washed, dried and chopped
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan
  • 1 cup Panko bread crumbs, toasted
  • ¼ to ½ cup olive oil
  • BBQ Sauce:
  • 1 (8 ounce) bottle ketchup
  • 1⁄2 cup water
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tablespoons mustard
  • 1⁄4 cup white vinegar
  1. Meatballs:
  2. Add the meat to a large bowl, season all over with salt, to taste.
  3. Add the remaining ingredients EXCEPT for the bread crumbs. Mix until all the ingredients are combined. Add in bread crumbs last and mix to combine.
  4. Roll the mixture into about 20 to 25 or so meatballs that are about 2 inches in diameter (can be a little larger).
  5. Heat the oil in a large skillet over high heat. When the oil is hot (it will begin to smoke lightly - be careful not to burn it), shut off the heat to avoid splattering, add the meatballs in a single layer and spread them somewhat apart so they have a chance to brown instead of steam. You may need to do this in batches, depending on the size of your skillet. You want to give them room to move around.
  6. Turn the heat back up to medium-high and brown the meatballs, turning them so they brown evenly on all sides. Cook them until they are medium-rare, about 3 to 5 minutes. Touch them to make sure they are still tender in the center. Use a slotted spoon to remove them from the pan to a plate and cook the remaining meatballs, if needed.
  7. Add the meatballs to the pot of warm sauce you made and allow them to bubble slightly and simmer over very low heat for a few minutes. Shut off the heat and allow the mixture to rest and the meatballs to soak up the flavor of the sauce for a few additional minutes before serving. Serve over rice or with a side of potatoes.
  8. Sauce:
  9. While meatballs are cooking, make the BBQ sauce.
  10. Brown onion in 1 tablespoon of butter.
  11. Add all the ingredients, including the onion into a pot and cook until heated through. Alternately, add to slow cooker after browning the onion, add the meatballs to sauce, and simmer all day if using for a party. You can do this a day ahead: add ingredients to slow cooker insert, refrigerate and cover, then put it in the slow cooker the next day, plug it in and warm it all up!

 DisclaimerThis post is sponsored by The National Pork BoardThe words and opinions expressed in this post are strictly 100% my own, as always.

Recipe source:  adapted from “Family Comfort Dishes” on Food Network

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These are a few of my favorite things: cooking, baking, Broadway musicals, cruises, Disney World, Christmas, thunderstorms, 80's and country music, and my favorite pastime has ALWAYS been baseball. Go Yankees!

36 Responses to “Brown Sugar Glazed Pork Meatballs”

  1. Ginny McMeans
    October 26, 2015 at 1:12 AM #

    How great to have a recipe that can be an appetizer as well as a main dish. Love that brown sugar bbq sauce.

  2. October 26, 2015 at 6:12 AM #

    I have all the ingredients for the bbq sauce and will definitely be trying it during this week! 🙂 These meatballs look devine!

  3. October 26, 2015 at 6:17 AM #

    I like the sounds of Meatball Monday! And pork makes such great meatballs. Love that this recipe can be either an app or a main dish – they sound amazing!

  4. October 26, 2015 at 6:42 AM #

    Dear Ashley, the glaze looks and sounds marvelous…these meatballs are perfect! What a wonderful recipe. xo, Catherine

  5. Amy P.
    October 26, 2015 at 9:06 AM #

    When are the breadcrumbs added?

    • October 26, 2015 at 12:14 PM #

      So sorry Amy!! I feel bad that I missed that somehow. I added in that step – they get added last and mixed in. Again – sorry!

  6. October 26, 2015 at 9:32 AM #

    Oh man, that glaze looks like something I could drink from a cup! We love, love, love meatballs, and yours look mouth-watering! Seriously, I am totally salivating right now and need to find myself a napkin to wipe the drool off my face…

  7. October 26, 2015 at 11:16 AM #

    I use to hate pork because it was always so dry, but these look amazing!!! Such a great recipe.

  8. October 26, 2015 at 11:17 AM #

    Meatball Monday sounds great! These look really good – excellent for holiday parties, which is what I’m thinking about right now. That glaze looks irresistible!

  9. Julie
    October 26, 2015 at 11:52 AM #

    These meatballs look so yummy, thinking of making them for my housewarming party! Just a little as to what to do with Panko breadcrumbs, you say not to add to the mixture, when do they get incorporated into the recipe?

    • October 26, 2015 at 12:13 PM #

      So sorry about that! I feel so bad! I updated it!

  10. October 26, 2015 at 12:42 PM #

    Oh my goodness Ashley, these look incredible! Your pictures look fantastic. This is a recipe that all three of my kids would like, YAY!

  11. October 26, 2015 at 2:55 PM #

    Oh wow – that brown sugar BBQ sauce sounds super delish – and these balls in that sticky sweet sauce must have been beyond amazing!

  12. October 26, 2015 at 3:28 PM #

    These meatballs looks incredible!

  13. October 26, 2015 at 3:50 PM #

    One, these meatballs sound awesomeeee. And two, I have been catching up all day! I neglected everything this weekend and it was amazing but today has been a little nutty! haha

  14. October 26, 2015 at 4:39 PM #

    Hooray that pork doesn’t have to be overcooked anymore! That’s awesome news. 😀 And these meatballs look so delicious!

  15. October 26, 2015 at 7:02 PM #

    I recently made pork meatballs and they were delicious. I am going to try this.

  16. October 26, 2015 at 10:02 PM #

    I’m a HUGE meatball lover, too…so you know I”ll be trying these – that is high praise! And I’m totally down for the idea of Meatball Monday.

  17. October 26, 2015 at 10:35 PM #

    These meatballs look and sound so yummy! Love all things pork, hallelujah!

  18. October 26, 2015 at 11:31 PM #

    I can see why these didn’t last long! These would be great for a meal or even on an appetizer table during a holiday party.

  19. October 27, 2015 at 10:15 AM #

    I am super afraid of pork too! Why is that!? So weird! But these meatballs would be so perfect over some white rice!

  20. October 27, 2015 at 3:41 PM #

    Oh man, this looks awesome, loving that glaze!!! I may have to make these as an appetizer for a Halloween party this weekend 🙂

  21. October 27, 2015 at 4:04 PM #

    Gorgeous meatballs! These would disappear fast in our home!

  22. October 27, 2015 at 4:50 PM #

    Meatballs make me happy! These look delicious! I love the glaze. Mmmmm Mmmmmm!

  23. October 27, 2015 at 6:27 PM #

    I love your Monday meatball idea. I just might have to jump on that bandwagon, starting with this amazing looking recipe!

  24. October 27, 2015 at 6:43 PM #

    You just can’t go wrong with a good meatball … and these look GREAT!!

  25. October 28, 2015 at 12:25 AM #

    I love meatballs and brown sugar so this is a win for me. I’ll take a huge mountain of these please. Extra sauce drizzled over mine. Yum yum.

  26. October 28, 2015 at 2:05 PM #

    These meatballs look absolutley perfect! Gorgeous photos, too! It’s interesting that the USDA has lowered the cooking temperature of pork. I gotta tell the hubs as he loves to cook pork. Thanks for this awesome recipe and the heads up 🙂

  27. October 29, 2015 at 9:33 PM #

    Ok, you got me. Best ever? I am toootally going to have to give this recipe a go.

    • November 1, 2015 at 6:07 PM #

      They are so good – especially with that glaze!

  28. November 1, 2015 at 6:03 PM #

    Ashley these look amazing!!! A winning recipe for sure.

    • November 1, 2015 at 6:07 PM #

      aww thanks girl!!

  29. November 1, 2015 at 11:19 PM #

    Totally overcooked pork is the worst! However these meatballs look amazing! I love how packed full of flavor they are. I sorta wish I had a few for a midnight snack 🙂

  30. November 8, 2015 at 3:14 PM #

    Working from home is the best, isn’t it? I really enjoy cooking pork but I don’t do it enough. This sounds like such a flavorful recipe.


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