With just 10 minutes of hands-on time, this appetizer was made for busy hostesses. These Instant Pot meatballs have all the nostalgia of your favorite old-school cocktail meatballs with an updated, tangy twist. Instead of grape jelly, our Test Kitchen chose a mixture of red currant jelly and sweet chili sauce that adds major depth to the sauce without any extra work on your part. The sauce that’s paired with these Instant Pot meatballs is well balanced with the ideal amount of slightly spicy, sweet, and tangy. If you’re serving a large crowd, this Instant Pot meatballs recipe will easily double (or triple; let’s be honest: People will eat these up!), and you can also make this recipe with chicken or turkey meatballs. Serve your Instant Pot meatballs standalone with toothpicks, on slider buns with a bit of Asian-inspired coleslaw, or in lettuce wraps for a lighter approach. Whichever route you choose for the presentation, these meatballs are going to go fast. If you happen to have a few unlikely leftovers, make sliders or hoagies for the kids’ lunches the next day, and they’ll have the most envious meal at the table. With a handful of ingredients and minimal hands-on time, these Instant Pot meatballs just became your go-to appetizer.


Credit: Photography: Caitlin Bensel, Prop Styling: Audrey Davis, Food Styling: Rishon Hanners

Recipe Summary test

10 mins
40 mins
Serves 7 (serving size: 3 meatballs)


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Whisk together chili sauce, jelly, soy sauce, mustard, and 1/4 cup of the water in a programmable pressure multicooker (such as Instant Pot) until blended. (Times, instructions, and settings may vary according to cooker brand or model.) Add meatballs, and stir to coat. Cover cooker with lid, and lock in place. Turn steam release handle to SEALING position. Select MANUAL/PRESSURE COOK setting. Select HIGH pressure for 8 minutes. (It will take 15 to 20 minutes for cooker to come up to pressure before cooking begins.)

  • Carefully turn steam release handle to VENTING position, and let steam fully escape (float valve will drop). (This will take 1 to 2 minutes.) Press CANCEL. Remove lid from cooker.

  • Select SAUTÉ and HIGH temperature setting on cooker, and, if necessary, allow to preheat 2 to 3 minutes. Bring sauce to a simmer. Whisk together cornstarch and remaining 2 tablespoons water in a small bowl. Stir cornstarch mixture into sauce. Cook, stirring often, until sauce thickens and glazes meatballs, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer meatballs to a serving platter. Spoon sauce over meatballs, and garnish with scallions.