Sweet and tangy with a smell that sets stomachs growling, these Dr Pepper Meatballs make a great game day treat served on their own or a filling supper when served over rice with your favorite sides.
- Cider Vinegar
- Dr Pepper*
- Garlic powder
- Brown Sugar
- Meatballs homemade or store bought
- Brown sugar, of course, is not pictured. Any mom will tell ya, there always has to be a straggler…
- *I am using a Dr Pepper 10 for one very important reason: I have a Dr Pepper 10.
- You can use regular Dr Pepper, Generic Dr Pepper, or even Diet Dr Pepper. You can also use coke but I’m gonna stop there because if I go into every single carbonated beverage option I’ll quickly settle into a Bubba Gump style Filibuster and we’ll be here all day. You get my point.
- You’re also going to need some meatballs, homemade or store bought. I can usually find the frozen ones on sale and that is when I pick them up for a few recipes I use them in. My recipe for homemade meatballs can be found by clicking here.
- Note that both options I am suggesting are already cooked but you could make this with uncooked meatballs because the heat and time are plenty long enough to get them done, just be a little more careful in stirring because they are gonna break apart easier and they will be tempted to stick to the bottom of the pot. Uncooked meatballs easily succumb to temptation. 🙂 They’re like the teenagers of the ground beef world.
Combine all of the sauce ingredients in a pot of some sort.
I am using my cast iron enameled Dutch oven. I have three of these puppies and cook in them a lot mainly because of how well they retain heat. I can cook supper in this pot, put the lid on it, and go run errands and such and when I come back the food inside is still nice and hot. I have two Lodge brand Dutch ovens, one Le Creuset (only because it was free), and I just bought myself a shiny new Tramontina brand as an early Christmas gift because I’ve been good all year (well, most of it at least).
Put this over medium heat and stir constantly until everything is all blended together, about five minutes or so.
Add in your meatballs, fresh or frozen (no need to thaw), and stir to coat.
Put this over medium heat and bring to a light boil, stirring every so often but being careful not to break up the meatballs.
Note: If you’re not a little on the gentle side, you may end up breaking up your meatballs. That’s okay. This is not going to affect the state of the world if you end up with meatball pieces because they will still be delicious.
So here is what is going to happen. Once this comes to a light boil over medium heat it is going to start reducing, or as we call it “cooking down” and that is what is going to make our sauce all nice and thick. You cook that for about 20 minutes (or so) until the sauce is seriously reduced and produces a nice coating on the meatballs. Keep stirring it every now and then because the meatballs will brown on the bottom (which you want).
When they are done, they will look something like this. I say “something” like this because you may decide to take yours off the stove eye before your sauce gets this thick and that is perfectly alright.
Now, if you are serving these for supper, break out the rice or our riced cauliflower and nestle some meatballs along with the sauce on top of it. If that is the case, I suggest you do take them off while you have a little thinner sauce so you can drizzle some over your rice.
If you are serving these for a party, just put them on a platter with tooth picks like I did below.
If making these meatballs is the extent of your Friday (or Monday) night excitement, just put a few in a bowl and grab a fork. That’s what I do 🙂
Enjoy the sweet tangy goodness!
- Approximately 2 pounds frozen meatballs (store bought or homemade
- 12 ounces Dr Pepper 1 can
- 1 cup ketchup
- 1/2 cup brown sugar dark or light
- 2 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1 teaspoon granulated garlic
- Combine everything except meatballs in a dutch oven or similar pot on stovetop. Stirring constantly, bring just to a boil over medium high heat.
- Carefully add meatballs and stir to coat. Continue to cook over medium heat until sauce has reduced by at least half and is nice and thick (roughly 20 minutes), stirring every so often to prevent meatballs from burning.
- Serve on their own as an appetizer or over rice as a meal.
Important to remember in this day of quickly spread news:
“A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on.”