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September 8, 2012
MOINK Balls:
Smoked Bacon Wrapped Meatballs

moink balls

MOINK. Well this is a crazy word isn't it? This word has been circulating around the internet BBQ world for quite some time. The general idea is that it came from "moo" and "oink" put together since you're using beef meatballs and pork bacon. MOINK balls are bacon wrapped meatballs that are smoked for about 1.5 hours. They are dusted with BBQ dry rub and brushed with BBQ sauce. I decided to give it a try. It's a really simple and tasty appetizer.


Ingredients for quick no work MOINK balls:
Bag of meatballs from the frozen food section (not Italian seasoned); thawed
Any BBQ dry rub you have in your pantry (or make this one)
1 pack of bacon
Any BBQ sauce you have lying around (or make this one)

how to make moink balls

Above I say that recipe is for "quick, no work" MOINK balls. That's because this recipe is designed to use premade meatballs with any old BBQ rub you can find. Using premade ingredients really simplifies this. At the bottom of this post I'll talk a bit about taking this recipe up a few notches.

So go ahead and cut your bacon in half (see above photo) and get your meatballs out. Look in the pantry for that leftover BBQ dry rub and get that out too.

making moink balls

Take each thawed meatball and wrap it with half a piece of bacon. Stick a toothpick in to keep it secure. These meatballs were pretty small so a half a slice of bacon was more than enough. Too much bacon would actually not work well here, so stick with a half piece. Once all of the meatballs are wrapped with bacon and impaled with a toothpick shake the BBQ dry rub all over. This is why I don't use Italian flavored meatballs because I suspect the BBQ dry rub and Italian seasonings don't go too well together.

The assembled MOINK balls can sit in the fridge as long as you like. I made these in the morning and then smoked them in the afternoon.

smoking moink balls on a weber smokey mountain wsm

Set up your smoker for 250 degrees. I smoked these on my Weber Smokey Mountain smoker. Lay all of the MOINK balls on the smoker. I used apple wood for these. The general smoking plan is to smoke them for 1 hour. This willcook the meatballs. Then you add any BBQ sauce you can find to the MOINK balls and smoke for another 30 minutes. And there you have it. Simple! In these photos I actually made a simple glaze of pureed chipotles in adobo sauce and honey. The recipe for this easy BBQ sauce "glaze" can be found here.

smoking moink balls on a weber smokey mountain wsm

smoking moink balls on a weber smokey mountain wsm

So now for the analysis: These were really good, don't get me wrong. However, in my mind they don't compare to the stuffed jalapeno pepper that has become so famous on the web. I made MOINK balls for a tailgate menu planning party and the general thoughts were that these made a great appetizer but they can be improved upon greatly. The major complaint was the premade meatball. Our tailgate group at least once a football season has homemade meatball subs made with amazing homemade meatballs. I think this made the premade meatball a bit unacceptable. So to do this again I would make a simple meatball that may only consist of beef, egg, breadcrumbs, salt, pepper, perhaps some sautéed onions and diced jalapeno peppers too. The idea would be to replace the store bought meatball with a modified non-Italian flavored homemade meatball. I think this has potential. That being said, every MOINK ball that I took to the tailgate planning party was devoured within minutes, which says to me that they were still really good! MOINK balls are a real winner!

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By John Thomas
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