This is a simple weeknight recipe my grandma passed along to me. I grew up on a farm where my father was a beef producer, so we always had ground beef in the freezer. I made these meatballs for our family and for kids while I was babysitting, and they were always a hit. Leftovers reheat well the next day.
—Provided by Karen Davis, Culinary Specialist, on behalf of Physicians Mutual Insurance
"I first made these meatballs when our children were small, and they just loved them," notes Mary Kelso of Hannibal, Missouri. "I occasionally use cream of mushroom soup instead of tomato soup, and that variation is delicious, too."
This recipe was one of my mother's favorites, and now my family enjoys it as well. The beauty of this recipe is that the meatballs need not be browned. The gingersnaps are what gives the gravy its rich taste. I have, at times, substituted fresh ground turkey for the beef, and it works just as well.
In Easton, Pennsylvania, Margaret Glassic lets this hearty sauce simmer while she mixes up the meatballs. "I've served this pasta dish for 50 years, and people still tell me it's the best they've had," she relates.
Bernice Morris, from Marshfield, Missouri, pairs meatballs with sweet baked beans to create this quick-and-easy dish. "I usually serve it with a tossed green salad and dinner rolls to make a complete meal," she notes.
On blustery spring days in Corfu, New York, Loni Fancher can rely on her mother’s microwave meatball dish to warm up family and friends in no time.
LONI’S TIP: “When it’s available, I like to substitute ground venison for the ground beef in this recipe. Tasty!”
Since first taking these meatballs to various social events a few years ago, I've shared the recipe many times. Sweet apple jelly provides a nice contrast to the tangy barbecue sauce. - Kay Townsend, Obion, Tennessee.