Barbecue Meatballs

Mouthwatering meatballs smothered in rich, dark, homemade barbecue sauce
Servings 6
Author 2Teaspoons



  • 1 ½ pounds ground beef
  • 1 cup milk
  • ¾ cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 garlic clove minced
  • 4 tablespoons minced onion about ½ small onion
  • ½ tablespoon butter
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • ½ cup flour
  • oil for skillet


  • 1 cup crushed tomatoes or unseasoned tomato sauce
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon ground mustard
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • pinch of ground clove
  • pinch of cinnamon
  • pinch of cayenne pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Melt butter in cast iron skillet. Saute onion and garlic in butter until cooked, about 5 minutes. Set aside and let cool for a few minutes. I used this unwashed pan to sear the meatballs later.
  3. Combine beef, milk, breadcrumbs, onion, garlic, salt and cumin in a large bowl. Roll into small meatballs, about 2 tablespoons meat-mixture each. Arrange in a single layer in baking dish (I used the one I would bake the meatballs and sauce in). Place in freezer for 5-10 minutes.
  4. While meatballs are cooling in freezer, whisk together all barbecue sauce ingredients. Set sauce aside.
  5. Heat a ¼” - ½” layer of oil in a cast iron skillet on medium heat. Coat meatballs in flour and place in oil. Brown meatballs on all sides, about 1-2 minutes per side. Arrange browned meatballs in baking dish and cover in barbecue sauce. Bake until meatballs are fully cooked, about 40-45 minutes. Serve as an appetizer or with your favorite sides (like creamy mashed potatoes!) :-)