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Instant Pot Sweet and Spicy Meatballs

Instant Pot Sweet and Spicy Meatballs cook up in just minutes and make an easy appetizer with just the right amount of sweet and spicy. Cocktail meatballs are almost a must at southern holiday parties. These Instant Pot Meatballs are also perfect for game day.

Instant Pot Sweet and Spicy Meatballs


Another meatball recipe I love are these Slow Cooker Cranberry Meatballs. They are a real favorite for Christmas parties as well as New Years.

This Instant Pot Sweet and Spicy Meatballs recipe makes use of frozen meatballs, greatly reducing the prep time. It literally only takes 5 minutes or less to get the ingredients in the Instant Pot. You’ll use a jar of chili sauce, a jar of grape jelly, red pepper flakes, garlic powder, and a little water. Mix all the ingredients in the Instant Pot, add the meatballs and stir to mix them in.

Instant Pot Sweet and Spicy Meatballs


Cover the Instant Pot and Pressure Cook for 8 minutes. Keep in mind that it will take 10 to 15 minutes for the Instant Pot to come to pressure.

Once they are cooked, if you want to thicken the sauce a little, you can add some cornstarch. Just mix it with an equal amount of cold water before adding it to the Instant Pot.

The chili sauce (I use Heinz) makes a great base for the sauce and the grape jelly adds lots of sweetness. I find 2 teaspoons of red pepper flakes to be just the right amount of heat to balance the sweetness, but you can add less if you want them less spicy.

Instant Pot Sweet and Spicy Meatballs

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Instant Pot Sweet and Spicy Meatballs

Instant Pot Sweet and Spicy Meat Balls

Instant Pot Sweet and Spicy Meatballs only take 5 minutes to prep. These meatballs have so much flavor and taste like they've been cooking all day.
PREP: 5 minutes
COOK: 8 minutes
TOTAL: 13 minutes


  • 1 (12-ounce) jar chili sauce, I use Heinz
  • 1 (12-ounce) jar grape jelly
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 teaspoons red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 (22-ounce) package frozen meatballs
  • sliced green onions
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch, optional


  • Add chili sauce, grape jelly, water, red pepper flakes, and garlic powder to Instant Pot. Stir to mix.
  • Add meatballs and stir to coat them in the liquid.
  • Place lid on Instant Pot. Make sure valve is in "sealing" position. Set to Pressure Cook for 8 minutes.
  • Release pressure manually and carefully remove lid. 
  • If you want the sauce to be thicker, mix the cornstarch with 1 1/2 teaspoons of cold water. Add to the pot and stir it into the sauce. Set to "Saute" mode and let simmer for a minute or 2 to thicken.
  • Sprinkle with green onions before serving.


Note: Cooking time does not include the time it takes for the Instant Pot to pressurize which will be about 10 minutes.
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: Southern

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18 thoughts on “Instant Pot Sweet and Spicy Meatballs”

  1. Very easy, really delicious. I received lots of compliments and was asked for the recipe by many.

  2. I made this recipe tonight. It’s good but I think I’ll do it again sometime with my own homemade meat ball. I just didn’t like the texture of the frozen meatballs.

  3. Do I have to use “frozen” meatballs? I would prefer to make my own, but is there a specific reason that all these meatball recipes call for frozen, or what if I made my own & then freeze them?

  4. I am not a fan of grape jelly…has anyone tried this recipe with other kinds of fruit jellies/jams?

  5. I made these with cayenne pepper instead of the garlic for a New Year’s Eve party. I served them with Hawaiian rolls. One ball on each roll. Made great meatball sandwiches and went over well.

  6. Granny Jean

    I am wondering the same thing as a Jan. Can I cook it in my Crockpot? I also have a Pressure Cooker and a Air Fryer Oven with pot to cook in. Just do not have an Instant Pot.

      1. Ericka Cooper

        I want to know the same thing. But I Don’t see a reply. I guess if you double it, I wouldn’t think you would have to double the time. I would just set the timer for a little more time instead of 8 mins do like 10-12 mins. But that’s just me taking a guess.

  7. Julia Hoffman

    I should add I used trader Joe’s meatless meatballs but otherwise followed the recipe and they turned out great! Thank you for the recipe.

  8. If I don’t have an Instant Pot, can I do this in a Crock Pot and if so how long should I cook them for.

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