These Sweet & Sour Chicken Meatballs are the perfect easy weeknight meal! They’re gluten & soy-free, and made with a homemade sweet and sour sauce.

A bowl of sweet & sour chicken meatballs with broccoli and rice ready to be eaten.

My husband recently texted me a photo of sweet and sour chicken that he had for lunch out during work and I was immediately jealous! Sweet and sour chicken is such a comforting classic with it’s red sauce, tender chicken and burst of flavor. 

I was inspired to make my own version with hidden veggie chicken meatballs, and a soy and gluten free sauce that tastes just as yummy as the real deal.

Why you’ll love this Sweet & Sour Chicken Meatballs

  • Sweet and sour flavor made allergen friendly! Sweet and sour chicken is typically made with gluten and soy, but these meatballs have all the flavor without the allergens.
  • Hidden veggie meatballs! I love adding some hidden veggies in the meatballs that add nutrients.

The Ingredients for Sweet & Sour Chicken Meatballs

  • White Onion, Garlic, and Carrot. These add flavor and nutrients to meatballs making them a hidden veggie meatball packed with flavor.
  • Ground Chicken. You can sub ground turkey.
  • Coconut Flour. 
  • Avocado Oil, Salt, and Pepper. 
  • Pineapple Juice, Chicken Broth, Rice Vinegar, Coconut Aminos, Coconut Sugar, Ketchup, and Arrowroot Starch. You’ll need these ingredients to make the sweet and sour sauce.

How to make Sweet & Sour Chicken Meatballs

  • Step One. Saute the onions and garlic and set aside. 
  • Step Two. Add the ground chicken, carrot, coconut flour, salt, pepper, along with the remainder of the avocado oil and onion and garlic mixture. 
  • Step Three. Form the mixture into meatballs and bake in the oven. 
  • Step Four. Make the sweet and sour sauce.
  • Step Five. Simmer the meatballs in the sauce.
  • Step Six. Remove from stove and enjoy!

Step by step photos of making the sweet & sour chicken meatballs.

Tips & Tricks

  • Simmer the sauce until it’s thick! You really want the sauce to be thick so it can coat the meatballs well, so make sure it coats the back of a spoon well before adding the meatballs. 
  • Adjust the thickness of the sauce with more or less arrowroot starch. If you wind up over-simmering the sauce to where it’s too thick, add a splash of chicken broth and stir to thin it out. If you want it even thicker, add a slurry of 1 tsp arrowroot starch and 2 tsp chicken broth.  

Storage and reheating instructions

You can store the meatballs in the fridge for 3-4 days or freeze for up to a month. To reheat, I highly recommend adding it to a pan and reheating on low heat on the stove. Add a splash of chicken broth to thin out the sauce if it’s too thick. 

What to serve with sweet and sour meatballs?

  • Steamed rice
  • Cauliflower rice
  • Steamed or roasted broccoli
  • Noodles
  • Etc! 

A pan with the sweet & sour chicken meatballs after cooking.

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Sweet & Sour Chicken Meatballs (Gluten Free)

  • Author: Unbound Wellness
  • Total Time: 35 mins
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Diet: Gluten Free



For the meatballs

  • 2 tbsp avocado oil, divided
  • 1/4 white onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup carrot, finely shredded
  • 1 lb ground chicken (sub ground turkey)
  • 1 tbsp coconut flour
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper (omit for AIP)


For the sauce

  • 1/2 cup pineapple juice, drained from canned pineapple
  • 3 tbsp chicken broth
  • 3 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 2 tbsp coconut aminos
  • 2 tbsp coconut sugar
  • 3 tbsp ketchup (use this for AIP)
  • 2 tsp arrowroot


  • Preheat the oven to 375 F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside
  • Using a medium pan, heat 1 tbsp of avocado oil over medium-low heat. Saute the onion for 3-4 minutes or until lightly translucent. Add the garlic and saute for another 2 minutes. Set aside and allow to cool slightly.
  • Add the ground chicken, carrot, coconut flour, salt, pepper, along with the remainder of the avocado oil and onion and garlic mixture. Mix well to combine.
  • Form the mixture into meatballs and place on the baking sheet.  Bake in the preheated oven for 30-35 minutes, flipping halfway through. The internal temperature should read 165 F. Remove from the oven and set aside.
  • To make the sweet and sour sauce, combine the ingredients in a bowl and whisk well. Preheat a large, deep pan over medium-low heat and add the sauce. Bring to a low simmer and lightly stir. The sauce should be thick and shimmering.
  • Reduce the heat to low and add the meatballs to the sauce. Rotate the meatballs to coat in the sauce and allow the flavors to combine.
  • Remove from the heat and top with green onion. Serve with a side of rice or cauliflower rice and veggies of your choice.  
  • Prep Time: 5 mins
  • Cook Time: 30 mins
  • Method: stovetop, oven
  • Cuisine: Global


  • Serving Size: 1 serving
  • Calories: 342
  • Fat: 16.4g
  • Carbohydrates: 28.9g
  • Fiber: 1.3g
  • Protein: 20.6g