Cooking, Baking & Cocktail Shaking

Apple Cider Glazed Meatballs

Happy #SundaySupper! This week the #SundaySupper crew went apple picking and brought back tons of juicy apples for some delicious fall recipes. These Apple Cider Glazed Meatballs are tender, juicy, and full of fall flavors.

Now, I didn’t actually pick my own apples. I may have cheated a bit (gasp!) and took a trip to my local orchard, Weber’s, and grabbed an already picked basket of honey crisp apples and a half gallon of fresh apple cider. It’s always nice when someone else does the hard labor for you.

When I heard this week’s theme was apples, I instantly thought dessert: apple pie, caramelized apples, stuffed apples, apple crisp, apple this, and apple that. It all sounded delicious, but I wanted to create something outside of the box, so I decided on these Apple Cider Glazed Meatballs. They’re savory, sweet, and just plain old yummy. They’re also extremely versatile. You can serve them as a main course for dinner, stick a tooth pick in them for Sunday night football (our favorite way to eat them), or pile them on a piece of crusty bread for a sandwich. Either way, they’re delicious.

Honey crisp apples are my apple of choice in the fall. They’re the perfect balance of sweet and tart with a crisp, juicy center. When I go apple picking, I head straight for the red-green orbs dangling from the apple trees.

I decided to use ground turkey for this recipe since it goes so well with apples. I mixed ground turkey with a generous amount of garlic, cayenne, and shredded honey crisp apples. They  get baked until they’re perfectly brown and crispy on the outside, then tossed in a sweet apple cider glaze. The result is a sweet and savory tender meatball.


Apple Cider Glazed Meatballs

Savory meatballs with a sweet and spicy glaze. Serve them as an appetizer or over pasta or rice.

Yield: 20 meatballs

Total Time: 35 minutes

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes



1 and 1/2 pounds ground turkey
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/3 cup shredded apple (see note)
3 tablespoons onion, finely diced
1/3 cup bread crumbs
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper


1 cup apple cider
1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
1 tablespoon apple butter
3 tablespoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon chili garlic sauce
1 and 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 cup chopped scallions



Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

In a large bowl, add all of the ingredients. Mix to combine. Roll into 1-inch balls. Place the meatballs on a cookie grate on top of an aluminum foil lined baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes.


In a small bowl, add all of the ingredients, except the scallions. Whisk to combine.

Add the mixture to a large sauté pan over medium heat. Bring the mixture to a gentle boil and let simmer for 2 minutes until the glaze thickens. Add the meatballs to the pan and let cook for 1 minute to coat. Top with chopped scallions.


Note:  After shredding the apple, place in a paper towel or clean kitchen towel and squeeze out juice.

Adapted from Better Homes & Gardens

All images and text ©.
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105 Responses to “Apple Cider Glazed Meatballs”

  1. #
    Baker Street — September 23, 2012 at 6:46 am

    I love the 2nd picture!! cider glazed meatballs is such a brilliant idea, Jennie! :)


  2. #
    CCU — September 23, 2012 at 8:01 am

    Apples and meatballs? It sounds incredible my friend and looks even better :D

    Choc Chip Uru


  3. #
    Kayle (The Cooking Actress) — September 23, 2012 at 8:41 am

    Those meatballs look mouthwatering.

    I can, like…almost taste them! Yum!


  4. #
    Laura Hunter — September 23, 2012 at 8:45 am

    Ever since I saw your teaser picture I couldn’t wait to read your recipe. These sound so amazing, I think I might try them with minced pork because I love pork and apple together. Thanks for sharing


  5. #
    Rachel — September 23, 2012 at 8:51 am

    These look great! I’m having a get-together in a couple weeks, and needed another savory appetizer idea–This would be perfect! And I think I might try them some ground pork…Heck, even ground chicken might work too!


  6. #
    Dorothy at ShockinglyDelicious — September 23, 2012 at 9:36 am

    Wow! Just WOW! I can imagine the flavor pop from these!


  7. #
    Renee — September 23, 2012 at 9:39 am

    I have bookmarked this recipe and I cannot wait to try it. I am always looking for turkey recipes and this is just fabulous sounding to me.


  8. #
    Katie — September 23, 2012 at 9:41 am

    I am officially obsessed with this recipe and I MUST make it at home! Honeycrisp apples are definitely my favorite as well; I don’t know how I lived without them! The perfect eating apple, if I do say so myself…


  9. #
    diabeticFoodie — September 23, 2012 at 9:54 am

    Oh wow, these meatballs look so good! When I visited a cider mill in Vermont this summer, my nephew insisted we pick up some apple cider jelly. I’m thinking that would make an amazing glaze with soy sauce and ginger. I’m actually drooling. Love that you featured apples in the meatballs and in the glaze.


  10. #
    Katy — September 23, 2012 at 9:56 am

    Yum! They look so enticing and the flavor combination sounds so good.


  11. #
    Faye Leong — September 23, 2012 at 10:07 am

    This is a very creative recipe. Never thought of using turkey meat to make meat ball with apples….with this, I will have an additional idea for friends and family party. Thanks for sharing.


  12. #
    Lane — September 23, 2012 at 10:10 am

    Yum these meatballs look and sound fantastic. Bet these would make a great gameday treat!


  13. #
    Valerie — September 23, 2012 at 10:17 am

    Honey-crisp apples are The best (just after Pink Ladies). :D
    These meatballs look scrumptious!! Love the apple and meat combo.


  14. #
    Crazy Kwistin — September 23, 2012 at 10:22 am

    Yum these look so good! Great family recipe also!!

    I actually do want to get out and pick some apples soon, Julian is close by, ever had a Julian Apple pie?


  15. #
    Nicole @ The Daily Dish — September 23, 2012 at 10:31 am

    Oh yum! I bet these were fantastic! What a great way to fit the season change!


  16. #
    CJ at Food Stories — September 23, 2012 at 10:39 am

    This sounds like a great way to use the apples … Happy Sunday :-)


  17. #
    Stefanie @ Sarcastic Cooking — September 23, 2012 at 10:56 am

    I love the combo of turkey or chicken and apples. These are a perfect football snack!


  18. #
    Jen @JuanitasCocina — September 23, 2012 at 11:05 am

    Oh mah gawd. You naughty girl. You get the naughty girl award for #SS! These look soooo good.


  19. #
    Paula @ Vintage Kitchen — September 23, 2012 at 11:07 am

    This is a recipe that I would definitely try. A great twist on meatballs! Just wonderful Jenny. Happy Sunday!


  20. #
    Cindys Recipes — September 23, 2012 at 11:11 am

    I was really looking forward to this recipe, Jennie. I love turkey meatballs!


  21. #
    Patti — September 23, 2012 at 11:40 am

    Wow do these sound good! I’m sure the shredded apple keeps these nice and moist! Great recipe!


  22. #
    Pam @ The Meltaways — September 23, 2012 at 11:54 am

    I can’t tell you how much I love meatballs, and these look so good I could lick the screen!


  23. #
    Soni — September 23, 2012 at 11:58 am

    Ooh I love the idea of apples in your meatballs and that glaze sounds absolutely delicious!You’ve given me a great appetizer idea for my next gathering :)


  24. #
    Chris Baccus — September 23, 2012 at 12:48 pm

    So glad to see a few of us deviate from making desserts, not that there is anything wrong with apple desserts to end a great meal like this. These meatballs looks so good and there’s nothing wrong with buying a bunch of apples instead of picking them.


  25. #
    mommasmeals — September 23, 2012 at 1:04 pm

    What an awesome Fall recipe my friend!! I surly want to try these, a little sweet but a little savory!! Great combo, happy #SS!!


  26. #
    Bea — September 23, 2012 at 1:11 pm

    What a fantastic use of apple! Sounds and looks amazing!


  27. #
    Tora Estep — September 23, 2012 at 1:31 pm

    I love honeycrisp apples too! Your meatball sound delicious. I think I need to try a new meatball.


  28. #
    Wendy (The Weekend Gourmet) — September 23, 2012 at 1:40 pm

    I can’t wait to make these…I’m betting a mixture of ground turkey and ground pork would be good too! I buy ground pork for meatloaf, so I always have 1/2 lb. left to do something else with. These sound SO GOOD!!


  29. #
    Chelsea — September 23, 2012 at 2:54 pm

    These look fantastic! Great idea for serving during the game!


  30. #
    Anne @ Webicurean — September 23, 2012 at 2:57 pm

    I can’t wait to try this one–it’s going to make a great appetizer, I can just tell!


  31. #
    patsy — September 23, 2012 at 3:29 pm

    Adding the shredded apple to the meatballs, must be the key to keeping them so moist! What a brilliant idea!


  32. #
    Susan — September 23, 2012 at 5:03 pm

    I’ve been waiting for this recipe since your teaser! Love this! i love mini meatballs and always rely on my standard recipe, now I have a new one!!


  33. #
    megan @Irun4wine — September 23, 2012 at 5:41 pm

    These look absolutely amazing!!!


  34. #
    Hezzi-D — September 23, 2012 at 5:46 pm

    Love the addition of apples to the meatballs-that’s awesome. I’ve been in a meatball mood and now I want to try these!


  35. #
    Terra — September 23, 2012 at 5:57 pm

    Oh this time of the year makes me sooooooo happy! I just spent the day at my families apple barn, best part of my childhood was never ending cider treats:-) Love love your addition of apple cider in your meatballs, YUM! Hugs, Terra


  36. #
    Conni Smith — September 23, 2012 at 6:08 pm

    Oh yum! Those meatballs look so yummy!


  37. #
    Tara Noland — September 23, 2012 at 8:32 pm

    This looks great and I love turkey and apples together!!


  38. #
    Kim Bee — September 23, 2012 at 9:05 pm

    Oh my gosh, these look amazing. I am totally trying these out. I love meatballs. So yummy!


  39. #
    Erin @ Dinners, Dishes and Desserts — September 23, 2012 at 9:42 pm

    I love this idea of meatballs. I am a huge meatball fan, and this sound so amazing!


  40. #
    Lyn @LovelyPantry — September 23, 2012 at 9:53 pm

    Shredded apples in meatballs? I love it! My best friend loves meatballs. She loves apples too! I’ll be sharing with her ASAP!!! Happy #SundaySupper!


  41. #
    Liz — September 23, 2012 at 10:01 pm

    Boy, do these look delish, Jennie! I adore meatballs and I’d love to make these! Great idea to go savory for this week’s #SS :)


  42. #
    Jenn and Seth — September 23, 2012 at 10:30 pm

    these sound sooooooo good! such an amazing fall recipe, love it so much!


  43. #
    Arlene @FlourOnMyFace — September 24, 2012 at 12:27 am

    I’m so jealous you live near an orchard. Those meatballs look so good and I bet they taste even better made with turkey!


  44. #
    Chung-Ah | Damn Delicious — September 24, 2012 at 12:53 am

    Wow, that glaze is amazing! And I love that you used ground turkey. I’ve been trying to use ground turkey in place of ground beef more often lately.


  45. #
    Nancy @ gottagetbaked — September 24, 2012 at 2:09 am

    lol I need to stop reading the Sunday Supper posts when I’m hungry – your photos and descriptions of your dish are making me even more ravenous! I love that you took the savoury route and made turkey meatballs. These look and sound amazing. If only I had some right now to wash down with that fresh apple cider. Yum!


  46. #
    Emily — September 24, 2012 at 11:29 am

    YUM! These sound delicious!


  47. #
    Hip Foodie Mom — September 24, 2012 at 5:42 pm

    OMG, these meatballs look sooooo good! I just pinned this recipe! Can’t wait to try it. thanks for sharing!


  48. #
    Karen Hartzell (@InTheKitchenKP) — September 24, 2012 at 5:44 pm

    Jenny, these look delicious! I will defin be trying these out on my hungry troops!


  49. #
    Sarah — September 24, 2012 at 5:49 pm

    I was so curious to see what this would be, and I wasn’t disappointed!


  50. #
    Sunithi — September 25, 2012 at 11:32 am

    Love this ! Family loves meatballs and this must have such a nice apple kick to it. Am going to try this next time we have meatballs ! The glaze sounds yumm too ! Can’t wait to try this !


  51. #
    Sarah — September 25, 2012 at 12:01 pm

    Jennie you have managed to do it again and create a recipe I need to try immediately. It sounds so good and your making me really hungry and I’m dieting and this makes me happy and sad at the same time. I want to eat them now.


  52. #
    Brandie (@ Home Cooking Memories) — September 26, 2012 at 7:28 pm

    This sounds and looks so delicious! We love having meatballs for dinner and I am always looking for new ones to try.


  53. #
    amy @ fearless homemaker — September 28, 2012 at 10:33 am

    Oh, yum! these sound absolutely wonderful. I would love these made into a sandwich on some homemade bread. Mmmm!


  54. #
    Sheila Fretz — September 29, 2012 at 7:09 pm

    Can’t wait to try!


  55. #
    Angie @ Big Bear's Wife — October 3, 2012 at 11:36 am

    I bet these would be amazing! My husband would love these


  56. #
    Tiffany — October 4, 2012 at 11:36 am
  57. #
    Carla — October 7, 2012 at 2:21 pm

    I’ve been meaning to stop by and check out these meatballs because the name alone makes me want to eat them NOW. I’ve heard of meatballs glazed with grape jelly, but I never would have guessed cider! I got fresh from the farm cider yesterday, so these are on my list!


  58. #
    RAS — October 13, 2012 at 11:06 am

    Made these last night–they were sooo delicious! :) A little spicy though! Thanks for sharing :)


    • Jennie replied October 13th, 2012 at 11:53 am

      I’m so glad you enjoyed them. I tend to be a bit heavy handed with the spice; I love me some spicy food. If you want, you can cut back on the red pepper flakes next time.


  59. #
    Carla — October 14, 2012 at 5:39 pm

    Ok I am eating these meatballs RIGHT NOW and all I can say is I didnt make enough :D I served them with rice noodles bc I wanted it to be dinner (and spaghetti just didn’t feel right haha). Only adjustments I made were cutting the recipe in half and using beef.


    • Jennie replied October 14th, 2012 at 6:17 pm

      You made my meatballs! Weeee! I’m so glad you love them. We ate the entire plate in a matter of minutes. They’re so good.


  60. #
    candace — November 12, 2012 at 10:59 pm

    i have these on our thanksgiving menu!! we always have some sort of meatball for snacking on while everything is cooking every year… looking forward to trying them out :)


    • Jennie replied November 13th, 2012 at 9:40 am

      Hi Candace! Thanks for visiting. You’re going to love these meatballs. I’ve made them several times for football parties, and my guests adore them. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving.


  61. #
    Valentina — October 11, 2013 at 12:50 pm

    Wow – these look amazing! Sweet & savory. Perfect!


    • Jennie replied October 11th, 2013 at 1:06 pm

      Thanks, Valentina. They’re a family favorite.



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