Turkey Cocktail Meatballs Recipe

Dan George | Mantitlement

Turkey Cocktail Meatballs is a great appetizer for your holiday cocktail party. The cranberry glaze is out of this world!

Turkey Cocktail Meatballs Photo

If you’re looking for the perfect holiday appetizer, look no further than these turkey cocktail meatballs with cranberry glaze!

The homemade cranberry glaze cooks in a few hours in the slow cooker and then you can throw the meatballs right in and let them get all glazed up.

This was my first attempt at making homemade cranberry sauce. To be honest, my favorite kind is the stuff out of the can. I know, it pains some people to hear me say that, but I can’t help it. It’s what I had growing up and it kind of stuck with me.

But I came up with the perfect solution. I made homemade cranberry sauce that tastes like the kind from the can! It’s a little bit better than the canned version, I will admit. Not as much sugar for one, and for two, it has bourbon.

But it still is sweet, with a little tartness from the orange zest and of course from the cranberries. I pulled out my handy Better Zester that I received from KitchenIQ to grate my oranges. These graters are pretty rock star - the blade of the grater is extra sharp, so zesting is a breeze.

Turkey Cocktail Meatballs Picture

You start by making the cranberry sauce in your slow cooker. Basically add in all the ingredients and give it a stir. Set it to high for three hours and then puree with stick blender until it’s smooth.

In the meantime you can start the turkey meatballs. They do taste better to me if you pan fry them first – an extra step but definitely worth it.

Since the turkey meat is really moist I sprayed my hands with cooking spray first before I started rolling so they wouldn’t stick and make a mess.

After they’re browned you can set them aside until your sauce is ready and then add them to the slow cooker.

You can let them go for six hours on low or they’ll be done in two on high.

These turkey meatballs with cranberry glaze are a perfect appetizer for any holiday dinner you might be hosting or you could even serve them with rice or noodles for dinner!

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Turkey Cocktail Meatballs Recipe

    20 Servings


For the Cranberry Sauce:
  • 5 cups Fresh Cranberries
  • 1/4 cup Bourbon, Or whiskey
  • 1/4 cup Orange Juice
  • 1/4 cup Brown Sugar
  • 1/2 cup Granulated Sugar
  • 1 tablespoon Orange Zest
For the Meatballs:
  • 1 pound Ground Turkey
  • 1/3 cup Ricotta Cheese
  • 3 tablespoons Sour Cream
  • 4 leaves Fresh Sage, Chopped
  • 1 Egg
  • 1/2 cup Breadcrumbs
  • 1 clove Garlic, Large, minced
  • 1/2 tablespoon Poultry Seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon Salt
  • 1/2 tablespoon Black Pepper, Freshly ground
  • Olive Oil, For frying


  1. Add all the ingredients for the cranberry sauce into a large slow cooker.
  2. Stir and set to high heat for 3 hours.
  3. Puree with a stick blender (or let cool and transfer in batches to a blender) until smooth.
  4. Mix all the ingredients together for the meatballs in a large bowl.
  5. Add some olive oil to a large skillet and heat up over medium-high heat.
  6. Spray your hands with cooking spray and roll the meatballs into small 1 1/2" inch rounds. I used a 1 tablespoon scoop to measure them out evenly.
  7. Brown the meatballs on all sides and set them aside on a paper towel lined plate to cool.
  8. Add the meatballs to your slow cooker, pushing them down gently to make sure they’re all covered in the cranberry sauce.
  9. Cook on high for 2 hours, or on low for 4-6.


Cooking Method:
Slow Cooker
Boozy Food
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Related Recipes:
Boozy Food Recipes, Appetizer Recipes, Slow Cooker Recipes, Slow Cooked Recipes, Meatball Recipes, Ground Turkey Recipes, Cranberry Recipes, Christmas Recipes, Party Food Recipes, Easy Recipes
Recipe Yields:
40 cocktail meatballs
Prep Time:
Cook Time:
Total Time:
Related Post:
Author: Dan George
Recipe Yields: 40 cocktail meatballs
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 540 minutes
Total Time: 555 minutes

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size 2 meatballs
Servings Per Recipe 20

Amount Per Serving
Calories from Fat 25
Calories 109

% Daily Value*
Total Fat 3g
  Saturated Fat 1g
Sodium 397mg
Total Carbohydrate 13g
  Dietary Fiber 1g
  Sugars 9g
Protein 5g

* Percent Daily Value are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
** Nutrition Facts are estimated based on ingredients and data provided by Fat Secret. Please consult a doctor if you have special dietary needs.
Dan George

About Dan

Dan makes a mean cocktail and great food, which he shares on Mantitlement. We're so excited he's sharing his magical cocktail concoctions with Food Fanatic!

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