These pork sausage meatballs are more festive than sausage patties and easier to eat too. Meatballs are a great go-to recipe for brunches and parties. You can serve meatballs and an accompanying dipping sauce as an appetizer, or prepare a pot of rice or egg noodles and serve the meatballs as a main course. This is a useful item to have in the freezer, so set aside some time to bake a batch or two of meatballs, let them cool completely, then freeze in freezer safe containers. You will have the makings for a savory and satisfying supper. Depending on the flavor profile of the meatball, you can heat them up and serve them with marinara sauce and pasta for a quick meal of spaghetti and meatballs. Take these meatballs pair best with a sweeter sauce, making mornings a little easier to bear.

Sheri Castle


Credit: Photo: Alison Miksch; Prop Styling: Buffy Hargett Miller; Food Styling: Torie Cox

Recipe Summary test

20 mins
40 mins
Serves 12


Dipping Sauce


Instructions Checklist
  • Prepare the Meatballs: Preheat oven to 400°F. Coat a 24-cup miniature muffin pan with cooking spray. Place sausage in a large bowl, and let stand at room temperature 15 minutes. Gently stir in egg, apple, onion, Parmesan, sage, and 1/4 cup of the breadcrumbs. (Mixture should be well combined but not overworked.) Using gloves or hands dipped in ice water, gently shape sausage mixture into 24 (1 1/2-inch) balls. Coat balls lightly in remaining 1/4 cup breadcrumbs; place 1 ball in each prepared muffin cup.

  • Bake in preheated oven until browned on the bottom and beginning to sizzle around the edges, about 10 minutes. Remove from oven, and, using tip of a knife, turn Meatballs over. Return to oven, and bake until cooked through and well browned, about 10 minutes. Remove from oven, and let stand 5 minutes.

  • Meanwhile, prepare the Dipping Sauce: Stir together apple butter and mustard in a small bowl. Place Meatballs on a serving platter, and, if desired, garnish with parsley. Serve warm with Dipping Sauce