Tangy Sweet-and-Sour Meatballs Recipe
Tangy Sweet-and-Sour Meatballs Recipe photo by Taste of Home
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Tangy Sweet-and-Sour Meatballs Recipe

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4.5 20 34
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A tangy sauce, combine with green pepper and pineapple, tranforms Ruther's pre-made meatballs into a delightful main dish served over rice.
TOTAL TIME: Prep/Total Time: 30 min.
MAKES:6 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep/Total Time: 30 min.
MAKES: 6 servings


  • 1 can (20 ounces) pineapple chunks
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 3 tablespoons vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 batch of 30 meatballs (frozen or thawed)
  • 1 large green pepper, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • Hot cooked rice

Nutritional Facts

5 each: 449 calories, 18g fat (6g saturated fat), 116mg cholesterol, 335mg sodium, 47g carbohydrate (30g sugars, 2g fiber), 24g protein.


  1. Drain pineapple, reserving juice. Set pineapple aside. Add water to juice if needed to measure 1 cup; pour into a large skillet. Add 1/3 cup water, vinegar, soy sauce, brown sugar and cornstarch; stir until smooth.
  2. Cook over medium heat until thick, stirring constantly. Add the pineapple, meatballs and green pepper.
  3. Simmer, uncovered, for 20 minutes or until heated through. Serve with rice. Yield: 6 servings.
Originally published as Sweet-and-Sour Meatballs in Quick Cooking May/June 1998, p20

Medium-Bodied Red Wine

Enjoy this recipe with a medium-bodied red wine such as Chianti, Sangiovese, Malbec or Zinfandel.

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Laurie User ID: 8330296 267745
Reviewed Jun. 8, 2017 Edited Jun. 12, 2017

"I got a recipe from my mother-in-law many years ago for Chinese Sweet & Sour Meatballs. To make a long story short -- I lost it. She has since passed and this recipe is the closest I have come to the actual one. Thank you so much!! Can't wait to make Nana's Meatballs again! The whole family loves them!! ;-) P.S. - They are better with homemade meatballs, but the frozen kind saves time.

Made the Tangy Sweet & Sour Meatballs tonight. I tripled the soy sauce and ended up using a 14-oz (398 mL) tin of pineapple instead of a 20-oz, but it all worked out just fine! There was plenty of sauce to go on the rice. Delicious!! I used an oblong casserole dish instead of a skillet, and baked them at 300F for about 40 minutes in order to soften the peppers and pineapple. Better recipe than Nana's..."

peachynonni User ID: 4215913 247437
Reviewed Apr. 24, 2016

"I like it with homemade meatballs instead of frozen pre made."

ShelbyWT User ID: 8661965 239413
Reviewed Dec. 14, 2015

"This is a regular meal in my house. Everyone loves it. Very simple, very quick, great flavor. You can get away with reducing the brown sugar if you want to, which I usually do. I don't usually have pepper on hand and that's fine too."

kallee User ID: 1377067 79038
Reviewed Oct. 30, 2013

"This is one of my favorite meals to fix. It is easy and has a wonderful flavor."

Flygrl66 User ID: 7447733 51123
Reviewed Oct. 16, 2013


megaina User ID: 5282528 23102
Reviewed Aug. 10, 2013

"Super simple"

sue_242 User ID: 162815 16395
Reviewed Jul. 22, 2013

"I thought this was the good recipe I got from TOH years ago. It's not. This should be called Candied Meatballs & listed as a dessert. Absolutely disgusting! A waste of perfectly good food. Much, much too sweet even after tripling the vinegar. Downright nasty."

MegGuevara User ID: 7289457 50665
Reviewed Jun. 3, 2013

"I used Italian meat balls, not so good but the sauce was amazing. Im going to try it with chicken or pork soon. Soooo yummy!"

Wife_In_An_Apron User ID: 6895934 49241
Reviewed Oct. 2, 2012

"This was so scrumptious!!!! My husband absolutely loved it and said to make sure to incorporate into one of our regular dinners. It was also a nice, light dinner. Will definitely make this again! Not to mention, it is super simple to throw together. Yum!"

lilflicka User ID: 6704562 45715
Reviewed May. 22, 2012

"I made this recipe for a party. I am allergic to pinapple so I substituted canned peaches - YUM. There wasn't a meatball left in the pan! I put the sauce together the night before the party - it was so easy. The day of the party I tossed in the meatballs and baked the whole thing as directed. This is a wonderful recipe and I will definately make it again."

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