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Texas Sweet and Spicy Meatballs

Texas Sweet and Spicy Meatballs

Steven Pennington
A southwestern approach to the classic Italian meatballs. The sweet and spicy sauce is the best.
5 from 4 votes
Prep Time 12 mins
Cook Time 2 hrs
Total Time 2 hrs 12 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Texan / Southern
Servings 10 Meatballs

Suggested Equipment

Casserole Dish
Kitchen Bowls w/ Lids
Chef Knife



  • 1 pound Ground Beef 80/20 fat to fat
  • pound Favorite Sauage Add more if you love sauage

Ingredients For The BASE

  • ½ Vidiala Texas Sweet Onion chopped / Use Yellow Onion if you cannot find them
  • ½ Poblano Pepper chopped / reserve some for garnish
  • 1 tablespoon Garlic / Minced
  • 1 Egg
  • 1 ½ tablespoon Italian Parsley / Chopped
  • ½ Fresh Tomato / chopped
  • ½ Jalapeno chopped / remove seeds
  • ½ teaspoon Chipotle Powder / use 1 teaspoon if you like spicy food
  • ½ teaspoon Smokey Paprika
  • ¼ teaspoon Dried Thyme
  • ¼ teaspoon Fennel Seed


  • 24 ounces Tomato Sauce / 3 Cups
  • 3 tablespoon Adobe Sauce (/ Chipotles in Adobo)
  • 1 can Pineapple Chunks + Juice / At Lease 8oz can - Or more
  • 1 ½ teaspoon Sea Salt


Making The BASE

  • Add the egg first and whip it in a large bowl. Then add the onion (reserve some for garnish), the poblano (reserve some for garnish), and jalapenos.
  • Measure out each dry ingredient. Chipotle, paprika. With the thyme and fennel seed be sure to crush them in the palm of your hand to releases the natural oils. Mix everything together, then add in the parsley and tomato. Doing the premix helps preserve the tomato and parsley from being overworked.
  • Add the beef and sausage and rice next. Using your hands do a quick mix to combine then add in the Italian bread crumbs.
    Important TIP: The reason you add the bread crumbs after you mix meat is so the BASE can get into the meat. The bread crumbs will suck up the BASE instead of the meat.

Making the SAUCE

  • Add the fresh tomato sauce to a separate bowl, then measure out the adobo sauce ( add come of the chipotles if you like spicy food. Then add in the turbinado sugar and pineapple plus the juice. If using a larger can of pineapple. Use your best judgment on how much of the juice you think needs to be added. You can always ask me a question in the comments section for help.

Finishing & BAKING

  • Spray a 9 by 13 casserole dish with cooking spray to help avoid sticking.
    I like using an ice cream scooper to shape the meatballs then finish shaping them with my hands to create perfectly shaped meatballs. Your hands are the best tools in the kitchen.
    If the scooper is too large, no problem, you can still use one, just be mindful to not completely fill it. Try to repeat the same scoop on each meatball.
  • Cover the meatballs with the sauce, making sure every single inch of the meatballs is covered.
    Add all of the pieces of pineapple into the sauce bowl. Distribute them evenly around the casserole dish.
  • BAKE: @ 250 degrees for 2 plus hours. The key is you HAVE to cover the casserole dish.
    The low temperature is just like a slow braising. The meatball becomes very soft and tender.
    Using aluminum foil works to cover. Be sure to check on your meatballs along the cook in the oven to make sure everything is going well.
  • Plating: Add some of the sauce to a plate first, then add a sprinkle of chopped poblano, onion, and tomato. Plate the meatballs and garnish with chopped Italian parsley
    Don't forget the pieces of pineapple.
  • Please Enjoy & Share


Keyword Texas Sweet and Spicy Meatballs
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