Juicy BBQ turkey meatballs are wrapped in bacon and baked in a sweet and tangy brown sugar barbecue sauce for the best 2-bite appetizer!
Meatball apps will never go out of style and these bacon-wrapped BBQ gems are living proof of that.
We’ve got the sauce, we’ve got the bacon, AND we’re even keeping things on the lighter side today and using turkey instead of beef which I promise you won’t mind one bit.
Give me one good reason why you shouldn’t be diving face-first into that pan.
To no one’s surprise, we’re keeping these meatballs almost stupid easy today with minimal ingredients and only one sheet pan needed for baking.
AKA meet your new app addiction.
These Turkey Meatballs feature…
- A moist and juicy turkey meatball base
- Smoky bacon wrapped around meatballs
- A sweet and flavorful brown sugar barbecue sauce
- Only 7 ingredients and ready in 40 minutes
Making the BBQ Meatballs
(scroll down to the bottom of the post for the full recipe)
Ingredients You Will Need
- Ground turkey
- Panko breadcrumbs
- Barbecue sauce
- Brown sugar
This recipe is very adaptable to different kinds of meat including ground chicken, beef, or pork. You can also use a mix of several meats, but we recommend ground beef and pork in particular!
Tips for Perfect BBQ Meatballs
- Shape meatballs into uniform balls – aim for 15 uniform 1-inch balls so the meatballs all cook at the same rate.
- Cut each bacon strip into 4 pieces – these meatballs are a bit on the smaller size so you won’t need a full strip for each meatball. To prep the 4 strips of bacon for wrapping, cut each strip in half length-wise then again in half width-wise so you end up with 16 strips total (this recipe makes 15 meatballs so you’ll end up with an extra strip – just double wrap a meatball or save it for another use)
- Brush meatballs with sauce during last 10 minutes of baking – brushing the sauce on the meatballs during the last portion of baking keeps it from drying out.
- Serve meatballs with additional sauce – you may find that you have some extra sauce after brushing meatballs but this is okay! Save this extra sauce for serving with meatballs for additional dipping.
Try these ideas for a different twist on this recipe.
- Make them spicy – add a pinch of red pepper flakes, cayenne, or hot sauce to meatballs and then more in the sauce to taste.
- Skip the bacon – the bacon can easily be omitted from this recipe.
- Use homemade BBQ sauce – these meatballs are amazing with our homemade BBQ sauce!
Make Ahead Instructions
Follow these instructions for time-saving make ahead instructions.
- Form meatballs – form the meatballs, store in a container, and refrigerate up to 4 days before proceeding with baking.
- Make sauce – mix the barbecue sauce and brown sugar and store in refrigerator up to 1 week.
- Keep warm in slow cooker – optionally, once meatballs are done cooking they can be kept warm in the slow cooker on ‘warm’ setting for up to 2 hours. The bacon won’t be as crispy if you choose to go this route, but it will still be delicious!
It’s the combo of the brown sugar barbecue sauce and smoky bacon that really makes these meatballs, y’all! No one will even mind that there’s ground turkey tapping in for the usual beef.
Whether you’re hosting a Superbowl Sunday gathering or just having a meatballs craving and need ’em NOW, these BBQ-smothered gems will always deliver!
Save this recipe using the ‘save to recipe box’ button below. If you make it, please let us know! Leave a comment + star rating below, or take a photo and tag it on Instagram with #wholeandheavenlyoven.
Watch these meatballs made step-by-step on Google web stories.
More winner apps to try next!
Bacon BBQ Turkey Meatballs
This recipe may included paid links. As an Amazon Associate, I earn a commission from qualifying purchases.
- 1 lb ground turkey
- 1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
- 1 large egg
- 1 medium clove garlic, minced
- 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
- 4 strips bacon
- 1 cup barbecue sauce
- 1/4 cup light brown sugar
- Preheat oven to 400F and line a medium sheet pan with parchment paper. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine ground turkey, breadcrumbs, egg, garlic, salt, and pepper. Scoop mixture into 15 uniform meatballs and place on prepared sheet pan.
- Cut each strip of bacon in half width-wise and length-wise so you end up with 16 strips of bacon. Wrap meatballs in bacon strips.
- In a small bowl, combine barbecue sauce and brown sugar. Set aside for a moment.
- Bake meatballs at 400F 20 minutes then remove from oven and brush well with barbecue sauce (save any extra sauce for dipping). Return meatballs to oven and bake at 400F an additional 8-10 minutes until meatballs register 165F and sauce is bubbly.
- Serve meatballs warm with additional barbecue sauce for dipping if desired. Enjoy!
This post was updated with new recipe adjustments and photos on 2/1/24.