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These sweet and spicy meatballs are made with ground turkey, cherry peppers and bacon (because who doesn’t love bacon!) Topped with a BBQ glaze, they are perfect for weekend gatherings, football appetizers or anytime you want finger foods.
Sweet ‘n Spicy BBQ Turkey Meatballs with Bacon
Other party appetizer ideas, perfect for the upcoming super bowl, are Hot Chicken Philly Cheesesteak Dip, Mini Greek Spinach Pies, Baked Mozzarella Sticks, and Tostones Twice Air Fried Plantains. Check out a full list of more party appetizers or Super bowl recipes.
These are simple to make, you can prep the meatballs ahead and bake when you’re ready to serve.
Some of you who follow me on snapchat (username: skinnytaste) may have seen me make these last week, I know because I’ve been getting tons of requests via email, Instagram and Facebook to post the recipe so here it is, just before the weekend!
Hope you enjoy and feel free to come back and comment if you do!
Sweet 'n Spicy BBQ Turkey Meatballs with Bacon
These sweet and spicy meatballs are made with ground turkey, cherry peppers and bacon (because who doesn't love bacon!) Topped with a BBQ glaze, they are perfect for weekend gatherings, football appetizers or anytime you want finger foods.
Yield: 10 servings
Serving Size: 3 meatballs
- 1 1/4 pound 93% lean ground turkey
- 6 slices bacon, 4 ounces, roughly chopped
- 1/2 onion, quartered
- 2 garlic cloves, halved
- 2 ounces about 4 whole jarred cherry peppers (I like Trader Joe’s)
- 10 basil leaves
- 1 teaspoon fresh thyme
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 cup whole wheat panko, or gluten-free panko
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- freshly ground pepper, to taste
For the BBQ glaze:
- 2 tablespoon sweet BBQ sauce, store bought or homemade
- 2 tablespoon ketchup
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- For glaze: In a small bowl, combine barbeque sauce and ketchup. Set aside.
- For meatballs: In a food processor fitted with the metal blade, combine bacon, onion, garlic, cherry peppers, basil and thyme. Pulse until combined and uniform in color and texture, about 10 pulses.
- In a large bowl, combine ground turkey, egg, panko, salt and pepper.
- Add bacon-cherry pepper mixture to bowl and mix until thoroughly combined. Using your hands, form small round meatballs, about the size of a golf ball.
- Place the meatballs on a large baking sheet lined with parchment and with a pastry or silicone brush, lightly brush the meatballs with the barbeque-ketchup mixture.
- Bake for 12 minutes and then adjust oven to broil. Broil for an additional 4 to 5 minutes, or until meatballs are cooked through and browned.
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Serving: 3 meatballs, Calories: 122 kcal, Carbohydrates: 5 g, Protein: 12 g, Fat: 5.5 g, Saturated Fat: 2 g, Cholesterol: 60 mg, Sodium: 207 mg, Fiber: 0.5 g, Sugar: 3 g
40 comments on “Sweet ‘n Spicy BBQ Turkey Meatballs with Bacon”
Gina you did it again…amazing! I took these to a NYE party and left with an empty crockpot. I love making your recipes GINA because they use common ingredients and no one ever says are these diet?!
Just made these for a holiday gathering and received lots of high praise and recipe requests!
I love these meatballs! Husband & daughter approved. Great flavor. Used a blender because that was all I had. It was a bit more time consuming and didn’t get everything cut evenly, but taste was still great. I have since purchased a small Kitchen Aid food processor that I’m hoping will do the job easily. The Kentucky BBQ sauce & combination with ketchup was great as well! I make these regularly now, with brown rice & an added veggie like Gina’s roasted yellow squash.
What happens to points if you use 99% ground turkey ?
We enjoyed these as a variation from the same old meatball in marinara! So has anyone else noticed that jennie-o ground turkey is now just a pound, not 1.25? I happened to have a pound of 99% turkey and about a quarter pound of ground beef, so I mixed them and it was perfect. Also, my cherry peppers had expired 🙁 so I used pepperochinis. I didn’t really notice much of that flavor with so much other stuff in there, but maybe the cherry peppers would be different. Anyway,we loved them! Thanks for the recipe.
Hey Gina, I made these and was frustrated that they came out dry. Should I bake them for less time or maybe lower the cooking temperature?
Would turkey bacon work?
I think this would make an amazing meatloaf! They are super tasty.
Next time I’m in the mood for meatloaf I am going to try doing it with this recipe.
Hi – I was surprised that the smart points doubled so I checked the recipe builder and I got a different answer. Three meatballs = 3 smart points. Same as points plus.
I’m curious about the points too. Should this be 3 smart points instead of 6? I just started ww so I’m not familiar with recipe builder.
I made these and they were such a hit! What would the temp and baking time be if I wanted to make this as a meatloaf?
Thank you so much for the recipe. I left the bacon out, and substituted the Panko for whole wheat bread crumbs since it was all I had. It was still amazingly delicious!
This looks delicious, I can't wait to try it out! Did you use regular bacon or turkey bacon?
I made these for dinner tonight and they came out good, I would make them again except I would make a dipping sauce for the side and would glaze the meatballs towards the end of the cooking process.
Gina- I have the toughest time finding whole wheat breadcrumbs, or whole wheat panko, as this recipe calls for. Any suggestions on where I can find them?
And if I use regular breadcrumbs or panko, is the difference worth noting for points sake?
I'm a huge fan, have been using your recipes for over a year (I'd say we've tried about half!) Fiance is down 40 lbs and I am down 45 in a year!
Thanks Rachel, points would be the same!
I don't have a food processor (It's on my wish list). Would you recommend a small food chopper, blender or mixer? Thank you in advance and thank you for all of your great recipes!
Cuisinart makes a great chopper, you would do it in batches. A blender might work.
Good morning Gina. Thank you for all the wonderful recipes you give. I do have a question. If you don't have a food processor would you use a blender?
Sure, it should be ok.
I haven't been able to get my print friendly button to work either. So I email it to myself and print this way
My mouth is watering! Yum!
Is it me and my computer but I can't get the print friendly button to work?
These look delicious and I want to try them so saving to my timeline.
Thanks! These sound great!!!
They are great
Would it work to throw them in the crock-pot instead of the oven? Or, would they just mush together?
I would bake them, you could certainly add more sauce and keep them warmed in the slow cooker.
Love these little things too. I will make them soon. 🙂
Loved these!! I used jarred red sweet peppers. Genius recipe!
So glad you enjoyed it!
Could you substitute the cherry peppers with something not spicy such as jarred red bell peppers? I can't really handle spicy foods. These look delicious! Thanks!
can you freeze them? if so how and how long?
Sure, would probably stay good at least 1 month, if not longer.
These look great! Do you cook the bacon first before putting it in the food processor?
That is the same question I have
No it's uncooked, but you can if you wish!