Heavenly Ham Balls

  • Yield: 20 servings

"This is my own recipe that has become a family favorite for any occasion. It can be made ahead of time and frozen, or made into a loaf and served with the glaze."


Ham Balls
1 1/2pounds cubed ham
1pound ground pork
2 eggs
1cup saltine cracker crumbs
1cup finely chopped onions, optional
1cup all-purpose flour
3/4cup vegetable oil
1 1/4cups packed dark brown sugar
3/4cup orange juice
1/4cup rice vinegar
1/4cup prepared mustard
1tablespoon dry mustard
Cilantro leaves, optional
Orange slices, optional


  1. To prepare the ham balls, place the ham in a food processor container and pulse to a coarse texture. Combine the ham, pork, eggs, cracker crumbs, and onions, if using, in a large bowl; mix well.
  2. Form into 60 meatballs about the size of a walnut. The mixture will be very sticky and soft.
  3. Pour the flour into a shallow pan and coat the meatballs with the flour. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours to overnight.
  4. To prepare the glaze, combine all of the ingredients in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer until slightly thickened, about 10 minutes.
  5. Heat 1/4 cup of the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add 20 meatballs and cook until golden brown, about 4 minutes. Repeat twice with the remaining meatballs.
  6. Preheat the oven to 350F. Arrange the browned meatballs in a 13 x 9-inch glass baking dish. Pour the glaze mixture evenly over the meatballs and bake, uncovered, for 1 1/2 hours, or until richly glazed, turning every 30 minutes. Garnish with cilantro leaves and orange slices, if desired.

Recipe by Pearl Anna Bertsch, Ypsilanti, N.D.