Whiskey-Glazed Cocktail Meatballs

Lightly glazed with a delectably sweet and tangy sauce, these baked cocktail meatballs are sure to be a hit at any party. Our sauce combines Jack Daniels Tennessee Honey with ketchup, brown sugar, apricot jam and a splash of cider vinegar, but feel free to use your favorite whiskey or bourbon to add the signature flavor that makes this appetizer such a winner.

Whiskey Glazed Cocktail Meatball Appetizer Recipes

Whiskey-Glazed Cocktail Meatballs

Yield: 24 meatballs
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

A favorite at every party, these easy-to-make appetizer meatballs are coated with a sweet, tangy sauce made with ketchup, brown sugar, apricot jam and whiskey.


  • 1 lb ground pork (or turkey)
  • 1/4 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 3 tablespoons light cream or half-and-half
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 clove garlic, very finely chopped (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

For the sauce:

  • 1/3 cup ketchup
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons Jack Daniels Tennessee Honey (see notes for substitutions)
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons apricot jam
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Preheat the oven to 450°F, line a shallow baking pan with aluminum foil and coat with nonstick spray.
  2. Combine the panko and cream in a mixing bowl and set aside for 5 minutes to allow the panko to soften before adding the egg, garlic, salt and a few grinds of black pepper. Whisk until well blended, then add the meat.
  3. Gently mix the meat with the other ingredients until thoroughly combined, then form into 1 to 1-1/4-inch meatballs and arrange them on the prepared baking pan.
  4. Bake the meatballs until lightly browned and cooked through, 10 to 12 minutes. Using tongs, turn them once about midway through the cooking time for even browning.
  5. While the meatballs bake, place the ketchup, brown sugar, whiskey, vinegar and apricot jam in a large skillet. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly. Immediately reduce the heat to medium and season to taste with salt and pepper.
  6. Continue cooking, stirring frequently, until the mixture has reduced and thickened to the consistency of a thick syrup, 3 to 4 minutes.
    Note: Because of its high sugar content, it's important to watch the sauce carefully to avoid burning.
  7. Once the meatballs are done, add them to the sauce mixture and stir to coat. Continue cooking, stirring often, until they're nicely glazed, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer to a serving platter and serve with picks.


Jack Daniels Tennessee Honey is a blend of whiskey and honey liqueur with a sweet, smoky flavor. You can easily substitute your favorite whiskey, then taste and add 1 or 2 teaspoons of honey if desired.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 178Total Fat: 9gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 54mgSodium: 317mgCarbohydrates: 11gFiber: 0gSugar: 8gProtein: 11g

Note: Nutrition information is estimated and may vary from your actual results.