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This recipe post for Slow Cooker Barbecue Meatballs is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of McCain Foods, Inc. The opinions are entirely my own.

These 3-Ingredient Slow Cooker Barbecue Meatballs are the perfect easy appetizer, party snack, or weeknight dinner for busy families! With only 5 minutes of prep, you can let your Crock Pot do the work while you enjoy time with friends and family this season!

Crock Pot Barbecue Meatballs on an appetizer plate with toothpicks

If your family meals and fall get-togethers involve kids (like ours do!), then I’ve got some perfect ways to bring everyone together around the table. Quick-prep finger foods that appeal to both children and adults are the KEY to a successful and easy party!

An overhead shot of a packet of Mcains smiles shaped mashed potatoes

My boys love these McCain Smiles, which are made with real potatoes, seasoned with sea salt, and shaped into happy little faces. Let’s be honest: these appeal to EVERYONE — not just kids!

A close up of smiley face potatoes with a bowl of barbecue meatballs in the background

Since my boys are always hungry, I like to pair the potatoes with a high-protein meat option. Meat and potatoes is a combination that always satisfies, right?! And what could be more kid-friendly than miniature barbecue meatballs? Since the goal is simplicity, I keep the meatballs super-easy — just three ingredients that you can toss into the Crock Pot while you go about the rest of your fall fun!

Ingredients – What You Need

  • Frozen Fully Cooked Bite-Sized Turkey Meatballs
  • Barbecue Sauce
  • Onion

A close up of a spoonful of Slow Cooker barbecue Meatballs

This recipe actually comes from my friend Jessica, who brought the meatballs to a potluck gathering at the preschool last year. When I saw how quickly they were devoured, I knew that I needed her secret. Imagine my delight when she rattled off just 3 little ingredients?!

I have been known to add some steamed broccoli on the side for a quick fall dinner that makes everyone “smile,” but that’s certainly not necessary. Just grab some toothpicks, set the meatballs and potatoes out on a buffet, and let your party guests graze while you carve pumpkins, celebrate the Apple Fest, or cheer on your favorite football team.

Someone holding barbecue meatballs on a cocktail stick

With McCain Smiles and meatballs on a stick…what’s not to love?! 

Slow Cooker Meatballs on a plate with smiley face potatoes

Top Tip: These meatballs work well as both an appetizer and as a main course. To feed a larger crowd, simply double the recipe!

More Party Food ideas To Try:

Crock Pot Barbecue Meatballs on an appetizer plate with toothpicks

3 Ingredient Slow Cooker Meatballs

5 from 1 vote
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 3 hours
0 minutes
Total: 3 hours 5 minutes
Servings 8 servings
Calories 348 kcal
Super easy barbecue meatballs made with just 3 ingredients. These bite-sized bites are perfect for parties and are sure to go down a treat!


  • 1 (25 ounce) bag frozen fully-cooked bite-sized turkey meatballs
  • 1 (18 ounce) bottle barbecue sauce
  • 1 small onion, peeled and cut in half


  • Place meatballs and barbecue sauce in slow cooker and stir to combine. Add onion halves to the post and cover. Cook on LOW for 3-4 hours or on HIGH for 1-2 hours.
  • Remove onion halves and discard just before serving.


These meatballs work well as both an appetizer and as a main course. To feed a larger crowd, simply double the recipe!


Serving: 1/8 of the meatballs and sauceCalories: 348kcalCarbohydrates: 27gProtein: 15gFat: 19gSaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 63mgSodium: 705mgPotassium: 422mgSugar: 21gVitamin A: 145IUVitamin C: 2mgCalcium: 37mgIron: 1.2mg
Keyword: Barbecue Meatballs, Bit Sized Meatballs, slow cooker meatballs
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: American
Author: Blair Lonergan

Hey, I’m Blair!

Welcome to my farmhouse kitchen in the foothills of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains. Inspired by local traditions and seasonal fare, you’ll find plenty of easy, comforting recipes that bring your family together around the table. It’s down-home, country-style cooking!

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  1. I always buy McCain fries and what a lovely idea to pair the smiles with barbecue meatballs . Always love quick and easy meals especially during holidays .