These bite-size sweet-and-sour meatballs, drizzled with a pineapple- and soy-based sauce, make a great appetizer. Shredded carrot and finely diced pineapple keep the meatballs moist, while fresh ginger and Chinese five-spice powder amp up the flavor.

Carolyn Malcoun
Source: EatingWell Magazine, March/April 2012




Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with foil and coat with cooking spray.

  • Drain pineapple juice into a small bowl. Whisk in vinegar, ketchup, soy sauce, brown sugar, cornstarch and crushed red pepper. Set aside.

  • Finely chop enough pineapple to yield 1/2 cup. Press out excess moisture with paper towels. Reserve the remaining pineapple chunks for the sauce.

  • Lightly beat egg in a large bowl. Stir in carrot, scallion whites, ginger, five-spice powder, salt and the finely chopped pineapple. Add turkey and pork; gently mix to combine (do not overmix). Using a scant 1 tablespoon each, make 36 small meatballs. Bake on the prepared baking sheet until just cooked through, about 15 minutes.

  • Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add bell pepper and cook for 1 minute. Whisk the reserved juice mixture and add to the pan. Bring to a boil and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Stir in the remaining pineapple and the cooked meatballs.

  • To serve, thread a meatball and a piece of pineapple and/or pepper onto a small skewer or toothpick. Transfer to a platter, drizzle with sauce and sprinkle with scallion greens.


Make Ahead Tip: Freeze cooked meatballs in sauce airtight for up to 3 months. Defrost before reheating.

Equipment: 36 short skewers or toothpicks

People with celiac disease or gluten-sensitivity should use soy sauces that are labeled "gluten-free," as soy sauce may contain wheat or other gluten-containing sweeteners and flavors.

Nutrition Facts

37 calories; protein 2.9g 6% DV; carbohydrates 4.1g 1% DV; dietary fiber 0.3g 1% DV; sugars 3.2g; fat 1.2g 2% DV; saturated fat 0.3g 2% DV; cholesterol 12.4mg 4% DV; vitamin a iu 470.1IU 9% DV; vitamin c 7.9mg 13% DV; folate 5.3mcg 1% DV; calcium 7.8mg 1% DV; iron 0.3mg 2% DV; magnesium 5mg 2% DV; potassium 75.4mg 2% DV; sodium 100.4mg 4% DV; thiaminmg 2% DV; added sugar 1g.

Reviews (4)

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4 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 1
  • 4 star values: 0
  • 3 star values: 1
  • 2 star values: 2
  • 1 star values: 0
Rating: 5 stars
Simply fabulous This was a great recipe. The meatballs had a lot of flavor without the sauce but with it fabulous. I served the meatballs in the sauce with rice for dinner. Even my fussy daughter actually liked them (and she doesn't like turkey or pork). A keeper Pros: Moist and very tasty easy appetizer or even dinner Cons: A little time consuming in prep Read More
Rating: 3 stars
good flavor but fell apart my meatballs fell apart when baking. flavors were good but i think i should have added some panko or put in freezer for a ended up being a big mess. Read More
Rating: 2 stars
Tasty meatballs sauce too tangy/sweet The sauce was too tangy/sweet for me. Maybe it was too much rice vinegar. I felt that the sauce lacked a deep rounded flavor. Was very disappointed with the sauce unfortunately. Pros: meatballs were flavorful and moist Cons: unhappy with the sauce Read More
Rating: 2 stars
Listed as gluten-free but.... This recipe is listed as gluten-free. However be sure to use gluten-free soy sauce as regular soy sauce is not gluten-free. Read More