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Tangy and Sweet Meatballs

When we entertain friends for Sunday dinner, I frequently serve these tangy meatballs. Everyone loves the distinctive sauce, but they're often surprised to learn it is made with gingernsaps. -Melody Mellinger, Myerstown, Pennsylvania
  • Total Time
    Prep: 30 min. Bake: 40 min.
  • Makes
    8 servings


  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1-1/2 cups dry bread crumbs
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • SAUCE:
  • 3-1/2 cups tomato juice
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 10 gingersnaps, finely crushed
  • 1/4 cup white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon onion salt


  • In a large bowl, combine the eggs, onion, bread crumbs and salt. Crumble beef over mixture and mix well. Shape into 1-1/2-in. balls.
  • In a large skillet, brown meatballs in batches in oil. Transfer to a greased 13-in. x 9-in. baking dish.
  • In a large saucepan, combine the sauce ingredients. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring until cookie crumbs are dissolved. Pour over meatballs.
  • Bake, uncovered, at 350° for 40-45 minutes or until meat is no longer pink.
Nutrition Facts
1 each: 526 calories, 21g fat (7g saturated fat), 155mg cholesterol, 1226mg sodium, 55g carbohydrate (35g sugars, 1g fiber), 29g protein.

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Average Rating:
  • Patsy
    Aug 23, 2020

    These meatballs are the very best. My whole family raves about this recipe.( My husband is a very picky eaters). That just show that these really are the best. I also served them over rice.

  • Dawn
    Jul 2, 2020

    I'd used 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. onion powder to the sauce. These meatballs are delicious!

  • thefaulknerd
    Jan 22, 2020

    Made to a T - sooooooo good!!!

  • Juliann65
    Sep 15, 2019

    I've made these meatballs since this recipe was originally published. Nm it is a family favorite! The gingersnaps gravy is something special! It makes a big serving, so I make two smaller trays and freeze one for later. Nothing says Fall like these meatballs and mashed potatoes!

  • renie7
    Sep 12, 2019

    Delicious and it has become a family meal and now my daughter is using this delicious recipe too!

  • Jan
    Dec 17, 2017

    I'm sorry this isn't a review but a there a mis-statement in the nutritional information? 1226mg sodium per each? Per each meatball? Per each serving? Even if it's per servings, this number seems extraordinarily high.

  • Cathy
    Jul 24, 2017

    No comment left

  • sd20
    Jan 24, 2017

    Easy to make and pretty good!

  • Viki24
    Dec 30, 2015

    These are excellent meatballs! My family loves these with mashed potatoes.

  • shereeder
    Dec 23, 2015

    FINALLY!!!! Someone can actually post a recipe that includes the recipe for the meatballs! I haven't tried these yet, but the fact that there's a meatball recipe earns it 5 stars for me. THANK YOU!!! They sound delicious and will give them a try, even if it's for my pleasure at home.