Smoked BBQ Meatballs (Tasty and Easy Recipe!)

Smoked BBQ Meatballs are an easy-to-make crowd-pleasing dish.

You can put them on a bun with some coleslaw or simply serve them alone–the possibilities are endless!

What Are Smoked BBQ Meatballs?? 

Chances are you’ve tried meatballs from a bag that you pop in the oven and toss on pasta. But did you know that meatballs are one of the easiest foods to make yourself?

Even better is when you cook them in the smoker to add a delicious smoky flavor that will never come out of a bag. Slather them in your favorite BBQ sauce, and you have smoked BBQ meatballs that your entire family will enjoy. 

How to Make Smoked BBQ Meatballs

Making Smoked BBQ meatballs is easy and will only take you about 40 minutes to make.


  • 1lb ground beef (the leaner, the better)
  • ½ cup breadcrumbs
  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbsp black pepper
  • 1 tbsp salt 
  • 1 tbsp paprika
  • ½ tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 bottle of your favorite BBQ sauce

Step 1: Preheat Your Smoker

Preheat your smoker to 250°F.

Step 2: Combine Ingredients

Combine all of the above ingredients except the BBQ sauce in a large mixing bowl.

mixing meatballs

Step 3: Mix

Mix the mixture with your hands–there is no better way! 

Step 4: Make Meatballs

Once the spices look well mixed with the meat, roll balls that are about 1.5-2 inches in diameter. The trick here is to get them about the same size, so they take the same amount of time to cook. 

raw meatballs on a plate

Step 5: Cook

Place your meatballs on a jerky tray in your smoker. If you don’t have a jerky tray or are worried about the grease, a cast iron pan that fits in your smoker works just as well. 

Let the meatballs cook until they are 155°F (it takes about 35 minutes).

Step 6: Put in a Pot

Transfer your meatballs to a pot and slather them liberally with BBQ sauce. Place the pot on the stove and turn it to a low setting for 3-5 minutes. If the BBQ sauce starts to bubble, turn the stove down lower. Once they reach an internal temperature of 160°F, they are ready to serve.

You can also leave them on the stove on low for a bit longer while you set the table etc.! These keep warm like a charm! 

Smoked BBQ Meatballs Expert Tips and Variations

  • These can be made vegetarian. Simply swap the ground beef for Beyond Meat minced meat and omit the Worcestershire sauce.
  • These meatballs can be made gluten-free if you swap the bread crumbs for a gluten-free variety.
  • Split the meatballs into two saucepans and coat them with two different BBQ sauces to keep everyone happy!

Related >> Does Worcestershire Sauce Go Bad?

smoked bbq meatballs in a pot

How to Serve Smoked BBQ Meatballs

Smoked BBQ Meatballs are best served with a bun and some coleslaw. But you can also serve these by themselves or with a side salad. Just have the napkins handy because they are messy! 

How to Store BBQ Meatballs

Smoked BBQ Meatballs can be saved in an air-tight container for about 5 days. To reheat, simply put them back in a saucepan on the stove for about 5 minutes. We do not recommend freezing Smoked BBQ Meatballs.


What Goes Good with Smoked Meatballs?

Mashed potatoes, potato salad, rice, a bun, coleslaw, fries, green salad, baked potatoes, and mac n cheese all go well with BBQ meatballs.

What Does Adding Milk to Meatballs Do?

Adding milk to your meatballs will help to keep them moist, but we don’t recommend adding milk if you plan to smoke your meatballs. 

Is It Better to Sear or Bake Meatballs?

The best way to cook meatballs is by smoking them, however, baking is our second choice. You can sear meatballs, but they become dry easily using this method. 

How Do You Keep Meatballs Moist?

Meatballs are kept moist thanks to the breadcrumbs and eggs you use to bind them. It is also recommended to let meatballs cook in their own grease as this will prevent them from getting dry. 

smoked bbq meatballs in a pot

Smoked BBQ Meatballs

Hope Davis
Warm, tasty, and customizable, there is nothing like these Smoked BBQ Meatballs!
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Course Beef
Servings 4


  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
  • 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbsp black pepper
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1 tbsp paprika
  • 1/2 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 bottle of your favorite BBQ sauce


  • Preheat your smoker to 250°F.
  • Combine all the ingredients (except the BBQ sauce) in a large mixing bowl. Mix them together with your hands.
  • Roll the mixture into balls that are 1.5-2 inches in diameter.
  • Cook the meatballs on a jerky rack in your smoker for 35 minutes or until they reach an internal temperature of 155°F.
  • Transfer the meatballs to a pot on the stove with the entire bottle of BBQ sauce. Warm on low heat for 3-5 minutes or until the meatballs reach an internal temperature of 160°F.
Photo of author

Hope Davis

Born in Denver, Colorado as the oldest of 5 children, I learned at a young age that the grill was one of the best ways to prepare food for a crowd. And during the winter storm months, when the snow was likely to knock out the power to our house, the propane grill was a lifesaver! You wouldn’t believe the number of things you can cook on a grill when necessary. With parents who couldn’t tell salt from pepper unless you told them, I spent my late teen years making my own seasoning mixes and marinades to dress the meat before barbecues. It wasn’t long before I developed a secret marinade that people still beg me to make for them today! When I was 21 years old I bought my first smoker. Picked up some cedar chips for making a cedar plank salmon...and well, the rest they say is history! I’ve been grilling and smoking all kinds of creations ever since and I’m always excited to share my passion with others through my favorite medium--writing!

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