It seems as if slow cooker meals have become the new “it” thing. If you are a regular reader of my blog, you’ll know that I’ve had mixed opinions on slow cooker recipes/meals. But last month’s Cookbook of the Month really inspired me to use my slow cooker more. In fact, there was a week last month when I was making recipes from that book that I developed 4 more slow cooker recipes as well. I had 1 or 2 slow cookers going every day for that whole week!! Luckily, only 2 recipes that I made didn’t turn out like I wanted them to, but everything else turned out fantastic.
Among those recipes was this recipe for Tamale Balls. Well, I can’t take all the credit. A few weeks back, I was talking to my mother-in-law about recipes. We were actually discussing stuffed peppers, and different twists you could make on them. My mother-in-law then told me about a recipe she used to make for her kids when they were growing up – these tamale balls. She said that a pepper stuffed with the tamale ball mix would probably be fantastic!! That evening, she sent me home with a copy of an old family cookbook with the recipe.
A couple of days later, I decided to try it out. But instead of just baking them off, I thought I’d try them in the slow cooker. And while the end result was edible, it wasn’t really what I was going for. I’m not sure a pepper can really hold up to the slow cooker, because they were falling apart, and the filling was just a little bit too much. Luckily, I had made the whole recipe for the tamale filling, and only used half for the peppers, so the next day I turned the remaining mix into balls. I still wanted to make them in the slow cooker, so into the slow cooker they went, covered by the tomato sauce. When they were done, I served them over rice, and I found out that I had found my new favorite meatball recipe!!
These meatballs are so good. They have the flavors of tamales, all rolled up into a little ball. I can see why my husband and his siblings loved these meatballs growing up. And I love that they were so easily made in the slow cooker!!
Looking for more free recipes?
Meatballs with a Tex-Mex flair made easy in the slow cooker! These can also be frozen before being cooked to make for an easy meal another day.
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1 pound ground pork
- 1 1/2 cups cornmeal
- 3/4 cup tomato juice
- 1/2 cup flour
- 4 cloves finely chopped garlic
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 5 cups tomato juice
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 2 teaspoons salt
- In a large bowl, combine all of the meatball ingredients. Form into balls the size of a golf ball. Place in the bottom of a slow cooker.
- Combine the tomato juice, chili powder and salt. Pour over the tamale balls.
- Cook in the slow cooker on low for about 6 hours, or until cooked through. Serve over rice.