This simple three-ingredient recipe for crockpot meatballs and gravy tastes fabulous served over mashed potatoes, hot rice, or buttered egg noodles. It also works as a hot appetizer for a winter party. This is one of the easiest recipes ever, perfect for beginning cooks or anyone looking for simple recipes to use with the slow cooker.
Frozen cooked meatballs are one of the best convenience foods. They can be found at most major grocery stores. Another option is the next time you make meatballs, double your recipe and freeze half of the meatballs. For this recipe, you can use plain meatballs, wild rice meatballs, Italian style meatballs, or any homemade meatballs. Choose whichever protein you prefer, including turkey, beef, chicken or a combination of meats for the meatballs.
You can certainly add more ingredients to this recipe if you'd like. Vegetables like baby carrots, chopped onion, minced garlic, or green beans would be a delicious and healthy addition.
For a complete dinner, serve this dish with a green salad tossed with mushrooms and grape tomatoes and drizzled with a tangy dressing. If you are hosting a party, these meatballs are also great for a warm appetizer. Serve them with small toothpicks and mini plates so your guests can eat a few as they mix and mingle. If you are serving these as an appetizer, stick with smaller sized store bought meatballs or prepare smaller homemade meatballs.
Place the frozen meatballs in a 4 to 5-quart crockpot.
Add the condensed soup, water, dry gravy mix, thyme, and bay leaves and stir gently. If you are adding other vegetables, cut them all the same size and add them to the slow cooker now.
Cover the slow cooker and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours or on high for 3 to 4 hours or until the meatballs are hot and tender and the sauce is bubbling.
Remove and discard the bay leaves before serving.
Serve this mixture over mashed potatoes or buttered egg noodles for a tasty and filling dinner.
If you have any leftover meatballs, they are great as is the next day. You'll just need to warm them up on the stovetop or in the microwave. Another option is to put the leftover meatballs on a roll for meatball subs. For an extra kick, add cranberry sauce and a little bit of horseradish to the bread. Your meatball sandwich will taste like Thanksgiving dinner on a roll.