I am very happy to be working with and compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertisers on this post featuring Coca-Cola and RITZ ® Crackers (long-time favorites of mine) to bring you these Cocktail Meatballs. All opinions are mine alone. #BowlTimeSnacks #CollectiveBias
It’s no secret that I love football. And, of course, I LOVE fun get-togethers with family, friends, and food. So when I posted this fun recipe round up that represents each team in the playoffs I wasn’t that surprised when people started poking around and asking whether I was having a Big Game party to wrap it all up. My motto is always the more the merrier, of course! It doesn’t get much better than football and parties – especially if you’ve got great food like these fun Cocktail Meatballs drowning in homemade savory Buffalo sauce served on RITZ® crackers with a drizzle of chunky blue cheese dip. And the only thing to top that off is to chase it down with a cold Coca-Cola straight from a bucket of ice. Now that’s a party!
No matter who’s playing in the Big Game, we always have people rooting for both sides. It makes for fun, lively, and vocal banter (sometimes a bit too vocal) as kickoff time approaches. There’s back and forth about the quarterbacks, the announcers, and of course the refs (always an easy target)! But the one thing everyone does agree on is food. Lots of it! So I make sure to provide it. And these Cocktail Meatballs on RITZ® crackers with a dollop of homemade blue cheese dip do the trick. They’re savory, a little spicy, with just a hint of sweet, and the perfect size to pop in your mouth. The meatballs are a simple mixture of ground beef, spicy sausage (great combo!), some egg and bread crumbs. The savory-spicy Cocktail Meatball sauce takes advantage of some garlic chili hot sauce, beef broth, a hint of sugar, and a bit of vinegar. And the homemade blue cheese dip (you’ll never buy store bought again) is an easy whisk of sour cream, mayo, white wine vinegar, and blue cheese crumbles. Yum!!
It’s a really fun “assembly line” snack – put out stacks of buttery, salty RITZ® crackers, a heaping bowl (or a crock pot) full of warm Cocktail Meatballs, and a dish of the tangy homemade blue cheese dip, and let people build their own. Always a big hit! (The assembly line approach also saves you tons of time in the kitchen so you can actually join the party). I’ve learned to make dozens and dozens of them – there’s always a line of people waiting for these tasty nuggets. They won’t last long!
I’ve also learned to put a big bucket full of ice cold Coca-Cola (love the retro glass bottles – found them and everything else I needed at Safeway!) and Coke Zero at the beginning of that line. People grab a Coca-Cola and a plate of Cocktail Meatballs and find their “spot” where they can mingle, chat, swap sports stories, and yell at the refs on TV when appropriate! Oh, and one more thing…. when the Big Game is over, half the people are thrilled with the results, half are utterly disappointed, but let there be no doubt… most will be a wee bit depressed because then reality hits – the season is over. No more football till the end of summer. And that’s a bummer for everyone. So as a bonus, serve them all Coca-Cola floats!! A sure way to bring the smiles back to everyone’s faces. And THAT’s how to throw a Big Game party everyone will love!
For the Meatballs
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- 2 Pounds ground beef
- 2 Pounds Spicy Ground Sausage
- 1 1/2 Cups Dried Bread Crumbs
- 4 Eggs, Lightly Beaten
- 2 Cloves garlic, Minced
- 2 Teaspoons salt
- 1 Teaspoon Pepper
- 1 Bunch Green Onion, Chopped, Optional for garnish
For the Meatball Sauce
- 2 Cups Beef Broth
- 2 Tablespoons Cornstarch
- 2 Tablespoons Water
- 1/2 Cup Garlic Chili Sauce, I used Cholula
- 2 Tablespoons Sriracha Sauce
- 1/4 Cup White Wine Vinegar
- 2 Teaspoons Sugar
For the Blue Cheese Dip
- 1 Cup sour cream
- 1/2 Cup Mayonnnaise
- 8 Ounces Crumbled Blue Cheese
- 4 Tablespoons White Wine Vinegar
- 1/2 Teaspoon salt
- RITZ Crackers, Lots of them!
- Heat olive oil in a heavy bottomed large pan or dutch oven over medium high heat until shimmering, but not smoking. Sear meatballs on all sides, but do not cook through. They should be pink in the middle. This will take multiple batches. Remove each batch carefully into a large bowl and set aside until all batches are completed.
- When all the meatballs are seared (and set aside) carefully add beef broth to hot pot to de-glaze the pan, scraping up all the browned bits. Bring to a simmer. Combine cornstarch and water in a small dish, then whisk into the hot beef broth. Simmer until slightly thickened.
- Add chili sauce, Sriracha sauce, vinegar, and sugar to thickened beef broth. Stir to combine. Carefully add meatballs back to the pot containing the beef broth mixture. Stir to coat all the meatballs. Bring to a low simmer, then cover. Let simmer 20 minutes until meatballs are cooked through.
Blue Cheese Dip