As if smoked meatballs aren't good enough, these are made with a big ol' hunk of cheese in the middle and you just have to try these to truly understand how much better it makes them.

Helpful Information
  • Prep Time: 35 minutes
  • Cook Time: 1.5 – 2 hours
  • Smoker Temp: 225-240°F
  • Meat Finish Temp: 160°F
  • Recommended Wood: Apple
What You'll Need
  • 1 lb of 85/15 ground chuck (80/20 will also work)
  • ¼ lb ground pork or ground breakfast sausage
  • 1/3 cup bread crumbs
  • ½ cup grated parmesan
  • ½ cup shredded cheddar or cheddar mix
  • ½ cup finely chopped onion
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped jalapeno
  • 1/3 cup plain yogurt (I used greek style)
  • 1 large egg (the whole thing)
  • ¼ cup Worcestershire
  • Jeff's original sauce (Purchase formula here | Purchase bottled sauce)
  • Jeff's original rub (Purchase formula here | Purchase bottled rub)
  • ¼ to ½ inch cubes of cheddar, pepper jack, or other favorite cheese (sharp cheddar is my recommendation)
Please note that my rubs and barbecue sauce are now available in 2 formats– you can purchase the formulas and make them yourself OR you can buy them already made, in a bottle, ready to use.

Step 1: Make the Meatball Mix

Place the ground chuck, ground pork (or sausage), egg, parmesan, jalapeño, onion, grated cheddar, bread crumbs, Jeff's original rub , Jeff's barbecue sauce (Purchase formula here | Purchase bottled products), Worcestershire and yogurt into a large mixing bowl.

2015-IMG_6552

Now get in there with your clean bare hands to combine everything thoroughly.

2015-IMG_6555

Step 2: Form the Meatballs

Use your hands to form meatballs that are about 1.5 inch in diameter. I used an ice cream scoop to make sure I was getting the same amount every time then rolled it between my cupped palms to make it round.

2015-IMG_6556

In the above picture, I wasn't quite finished making all of the meatballs. I made them a little on the small side and ended up with about 24 meatballs. Multiply the recipe as required.

Step 3: Add the Cubed Cheese

Press the ¼ to ½ inch cubes of cheese right down into the center of each meatball.

2015-IMG_6558 2015-IMG_6559

Roll the meatball between cupped palms again to reform them into round shapes.

2015-IMG_6560

Optional: Transfer the meatballs to a Bradley rack or cookie sheet to help transport them to the smoker.

2015-IMG_6561

Step 4: Smoke the Cheesy Meatballs

Set up your smoker for cooking at about 225°F using apple wood if you have it. Other fruit woods will work as well as pecan, oak, or almost any smoking wood that you have and like.

Once ready, place the cheesy meatballs (or the entire rack if you are using one), directly onto the smoker grate.

2015-IMG_6566

Keep the smoke going the entire time and do your best to maintain 225°F throughout.

Step 5: Brush on the Sauce (optional)

Brushing on sauce while they cook is completely optional

I chose to serve my original barbecue sauce (Purchase formula here | Purchase bottled sauce) on the side but I was asked by more than one person why I did not sauce them. I'm just saying.. you might consider it;)

If you choose to sauce them, do so at about the 30 and 45 minute mark. This will give the sauce time to glaze over so they are not too sticky.

Step 6: Finishing Up

Check the temperature of the meatballs using a Thermapen Mk4 and when they reach 160°F, they are done.

This should take about 1.5 hours or so, but you might check them sooner than this to get a feel for how fast they are getting done.

The amount of time required will be determined by:

  • The temperature of the meatballs when they go into the smoker
  • How often you open the door and let the heat escape
  • The diameter of the meatballs

Thermapen Mk4

Speaking of Thermapen Mk4.. this is the thermometer I use and you should have one in your hands, as well, anytime you are cooking.

Patented auto-rotating display | Use in either hand | Motion-sensing sleep & wake mode | Intelligent backlight | Waterproof to IP67 | 3,000 hour battery life (AAA Battery) | 3-second readings! | High accuracy to ±0.7°F (±0.4°C) | 10 colors

Step 7: Serve the Cheesy Smoked Meatballs

Serving the cheesy smoked meatballs simply means that you bring them into the house (after having hid a few for yourself).

2015-IMG_6572

If anyone asks what happened to the other meatballs (in case you forget to rearrange them so it looks like none are missing), chew it over with a smoked meatball and make grunting noises. They'll give up eventually.

Other Options for the Smoked Meatballs
  • Wrap in half slices of bacon
  • Use these for meatball subs (delicious)
  • Use ground turkey or ground chicken for healthier choices
  • Use over pasta (spaghetti, linguini, etc.)
  • Add 2 to 3 tablespoons of red pepper flakes to the mix
  • Add 3 to 4 teaspoons of fresh minced garlic (or a lot more if you really like garlic)
Please note that my rubs and barbecue sauce are now available in 2 formats– you can purchase the formulas and make them yourself OR you can buy them already made, in a bottle, ready to use.

Purchase the Formulas for Jeff's Rub and Sauce
**Instant Download!**
Jeff's Original Rub Recipe
Jeff's Barbecue Sauce

***Note: you get the Texas style rub recipe free with your order!

If I could give these recipes away, I would do that. I really want you to have them! But, then, this is how I support the newsletter, the website and all of the other stuff that we do here to promote the art of smoking meat.

Read these recent testimonies:

I recently purchased both recipes. The files did not come thru right but Jeff was prompt to get it fixed. I tried them both last weekend and they were a huge hit. I followed his burnt ends recipe to the letter and my neighbors thought I was some master chef! Thanks Jeff!  -Susan T.

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Thank you for the great advice. Followed your rib recipe and everyone loved them. Used your rub and sauce. On point!  -Charles W.

Love the sauce and rub recipes. So far I have used them on beef ribs, pork ribs, and different chicken parts. Can't wait to do a beef brisket. Texas rub is great as well!  -Peter S.

Love the original rib rub and sauce! We have an annual rib fest competition at the lake every 4th of July. I will say we have won a great percent of the time over the past 15 years so we are not novices by any means. However, we didn't win last year and had to step up our game! We used Jeff's rub and sauce (sauce on the side) and it was a landslide win for us this year! Thanks Jeff for the great recipes. I'm looking forward to trying the Texas style rub in the near future!  -Michelle M.

I tried the rub on a beef brisket and some beef ribs the other day and our entire family enjoyed it tremendously. I also made a batch of the barbeque sauce that we used on the brisket as well as some chicken. We all agreed it was the best sauce we have had in a while.  -Darwyn B.

You see the raving testimonies and you wonder, “Can the recipes really be that good?”

No worries! Make up a batch and if it's not as good as you've heard.. simply ask for a refund. Now that's a bargain and you know it. Let's review:

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Printable Recipe

Print Recipe
5 from 1 vote

Cheesy Smoked Meatballs

Meatballs and parties go hand in hand and when they are smoked meatballs full of cheesy goodness, it’s a no brainer!
Prep Time35 mins
Cook Time1 hr
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: Hot Smoking
Servings: 20
Author: Jeff Phillips

Ingredients

  • 1 lb of 85/15 ground chuck
  • ¼ lb ground pork or ground breakfast sausage
  • 1/3 cup bread crumbs
  • ½ cup grated parmesan
  • ½ cup shredded cheddar or cheddar mix
  • ½ cup chopped onion
  • 1/3 cup chopped jalapeno
  • 1/3 cup plain yogurt (I used greek style)
  • 1 large egg (the whole thing)
  • ¼ cup Worcestershire
  • ¼ cup Jeff’s original rub
  • ½ cup Jeff’s barbecue sauce
  • ¼ inch cubes of cheddar you can also use pepper jack, or other favorite cheese. (sharp cheddar is my recommendation)

Instructions

Step 1: Make the Meatball Mix

  • Place the ground chuck, ground pork (or sausage), egg, parmesan, jalapeño, onion, grated cheddar, bread crumbs, rub, barbecue sauce, Worcestershire and yogurt into a large mixing bowl and get in there with your clean bare hands to combine everything thoroughly.

Step 2: Form the Meatballs

  • Use your hands to form meatballs that are about 1.5 inch in diameter. I used an ice cream scoop to make sure I was getting the same amount every time then rolled it between my cupped palms to make it round.

Step 3: Add the Cubed Cheese

  • Press the ¼ inch cubes of cheese right down into the center of each meatball.
  • Roll the meatball between cupped palms again to reform them into round shapes.
  • Optional: Transfer the meatballs to a Bradley rack or cookie sheet to help transport them to the smoker.

Step 4: Smoke the Cheesy Meatballs

  • Set up your smoker for cooking at about 225°F using apple wood if you have it. Other fruit woods will work as well as pecan, oak, or almost any smoking wood that you have and like.
  • Once ready, place the cheesy meatballs (or the entire Bradley rack if you are using them), directly onto the smoker grate.
  • Keep the smoke going the entire time and do your best to maintain 225°F throughout.

Step 5: Brushing on Sauce (optional)

  • I chose to serve the sauce on the side but I was asked by more than one person why I did not sauce them. I'm just saying.. you might consider it;)
  • If you choose to sauce them, do so at about the 30 and 45 minute mark. This will give the sauce time to glaze over so they are not too sticky.

Step 6: Finishing Up

  • Check the temperature of the meatballs and when they reach 160 °F, they are done. This should take about an hour, but you might check them sooner than this to get a feel for how fast they are getting done. The amount of time required will be determined by the temperature of the meatballs when they go into the smoker, how often you open the door and let the heat escape, the diameter of the meatballs

Step 7: Serve the Cheesy Smoked Meatballs

  • Serving the cheesy smoked meatballs simply means that you bring them into the house (after having hid a few for yourself).

Other Options

  • Wrap in half slices of bacon
  • Use these for meatball subs (delicious)
  • Use ground turkey or ground chicken for healthier choices
  • Use over pasta (spaghetti, linguini, etc.)
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