Paleo Maple Chipotle BBQ Meatballs are sweet and savory, made with a simple Paleo BBQ sauce and all made in one pan! An easy game day appetizer or dinner for the family!
| Paleo + gluten free + dairy free |
I’ve got your game day appetizer right here, and it only takes 30 minutes start to finish!
Tell me what you’re serving for the Super Bowl this year!
IMHO, meatballs need to be at your party. Because these Paleo Maple Chipotle BBQ Meatballs are perfect for the job! They’re…
- Smoky & spicy
- Completely homemade
- Grass-fed, grain free, gluten free, and Paleo
- Bite-sized & kinda addicting
- Oh, and can be totally made in the slow cooker!
Game day parties are a blast, but sometimes you’re stuck on what to feed a crowd. Here’s the line-up this year:
- Smoky Poblano Turkey Chili (slow cooker)
- Roasted Butternut Squash & Garlic Hummus
- Mediterranean White Bean Hummus
- Golden Coconut Lentil Chickpea Soup
OH, and we can’t forget about dessert! SOOOOOO…
- Chocolate Dipped Tahini Cookies
- Maple Cashew Caramel Corn
- Cherry Chocolate Chunk Cookies
- Paleo Frosted Brownies (just omit the peppermint extract!)
And, as always, I can never get over Jess Merchant’s game day line-up! Her food is killer.
I have a sort of love affair with meatballs. They’re a great way to jazz up dinner – toss them in curry sauce, cream sauce, BBQ sauce, chimichurri or pesto… Serve them over rice or noodles or even toss them in soup! I think meatballs just make eating more fun, wouldn’t you agree?
My mom’s meatballs are the best, though. Granted, she uses frozen meatballs, but the sauce is divine. It’s a combo of grape jelly and chili sauce with no beans. I know it might sound super weird, but they’re the best things ever! We have them at family reunions every year and I always look forward to them.
So these Paleo Maple Chipotle BBQ Meatballs are an amazing appetizer, but also make a fabulous dinner!
Toss them in your slow cooker to keep them warm while you whip up your other game day eats!
For dinner, serve them with Cauliflower Polenta (or regular polenta), roasted sweet potato fries, mashed potatoes, or steamed/sauteed greens.
How to make Paleo Maple Chipotle BBQ Meatballs: two methods
Okay, guys, there are two different ways you could make these!
- Sear them in a skillet and when they’re done, remove them to a plate. Add the sauce ingredients to the same skillet, stirring to incorporate. When it begins to simmer, add the meatballs back to the pan, cover halfway with a lid, and cook the meatballs through.
- Crockpot! Sear the meatballs on the stove, then transfer to a slow cooker with sauce ingredients. Let it slow cook all day so it’s completely hands-off. Actually if you really want this recipe to be hands-off, you can stick the meatballs into the slow cooker without browning them first, but I’d highly recommend a little pan-sear.
This BBQ sauce is perfect. It’s thick, but if you prefer a thinner sauce, add 1/2 cup chicken broth or water to the mix. The sauce gets a smoky flavor from smoked paprika and a little heat from chipotle chiles (or chipotle chile powder – your call). And then we sweeten it up with a little maple syrup and a little molasses! In this way, the BBQ sauce is kept Paleo and naturally sweetened.
And it’s good enough to just eat with a spoon. Like I may have opened the container in the fridge just for a spoonful of BBQ sauce!
I know this game day recipe is coming at you super late, but you’ve gotta make these meatballs!! Add ’em to your menu NOW! kthanx.
Pin these Paleo Maple Chipotle BBQ Meatballs for later!
These easy meatballs make for a perfect appetizer or dinner!
- 2 lbs. grass-fed lean ground beef
- 1/2 medium yellow onion, finely diced
- 1/3 c. almond flour
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 large eggs
- 1/2 tsp. chipotle chile powder
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/2 tsp. smoked paprika
- 1 (15-oz.) can tomato sauce
- 1 (6-oz.) can tomato paste
- 1/3 c. apple cider vinegar
- 1/4 c. pure maple syrup
- 3 Tbsp. coconut aminos (or soy sauce)
- 2 Tbsp. adobo sauce from 1 can of chipotle chiles (add 1 chopped pepper for more heat!)
- 2 Tbsp. molasses
- 2 tsp. Dijon mustard
- 1 tsp. garlic powder
- 1 tsp. onion powder
- 1 tsp. smoked paprika
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/2 c. chicken stock or water, as needed to thin
In a large mixing bowl, use your hands to mix together the ground beef, onion, almond flour, garlic, eggs, chipotle chile powder, salt, and smoked paprika. Form into meatballs about the size of a golf ball or a little smaller. Place onto a plate.
Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. When hot, add the meatballs, working in batches. Don't overcrowd the pan. Sear 3-4 minutes per side until golden brown. They do not have to be completely cooked through. Remove to a plate and repeat with remaining meatballs.
Return the pan to medium heat; add the tomato sauce, tomato paste, vinegar, maple syrup, coconut aminos, chipotle chiles in adobo, molasses, mustard, garlic powder, onion powder, smoked paprika, and salt. Whisk to incorporate. Bring to a low simmer and add all the meatballs back to the pan. Cover slightly with a lid and simmer until meatballs are cooked through, another 10 minutes or so. If you want a thinner sauce, whisk in chicken stock or water to your preferred consistency.
SLOW COOKER METHOD: Sear the meatballs as above, then place into a slow cooker. In a large bowl, whisk together all the sauce ingredients, then pour over the meatballs in the slow cooker. Cover and cook on low 4-6 hours.
Nutrition Information per Serving:
Calories: 295 Protein: 26g Carbs: 17g Fat: 12g