In the Kitchen

Great tasting Appetizer – Gladiator Meatballs

  • 12/28/2010

Gladiator Meatballs is adapted from one of Emeril’s recipes. I make these meatballs a few times a year and occasionally my husband takes them to work in a crockpot.

They’re always a big hit and the crockpot comes back empty…someone even drinks the gravy.  I make several batches of this recipe to fill my large crockpot.

My husband tells everyone that “they will make the back of your eyeballs sweat”.  I consider them medium heat.  You can of course make them hot or milder.

Gladiator Meatballs

You can find Emeril’s recipe here if you want to make the meatballs yourself –  Garlic Gladiator Meatballs


  • 16 Fresh Meatballs from Whole Foods Store
  • 1/4 t – 1/2 t garlic powder
  • 1/4 c bleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 t Creole Seasoning
  • 1/4 c vegetable oil
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1/4 T cayenne
  • 2 c thinly sliced onions
  • bottle amber beer
  • 1 c water


Combine the flour, Creole seasoning and garlic powder in a shallow plate.  Roll the meatballs evenly in the flour mixture, tapping off any excess.  Reserve any remaining flour.

In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium heat.  Add the meatballs and brown evenly, using a spoon to turn them.  Remove the meatballs from the pan and set aside.

With a wooden spoon, scrape the bottom of the pan to loosen any brown bits.  Stir in the reserved seasoned flour.  Stir constantly for 3 to 4 minutes to make a dark brown roux.

Add the sliced onions and season with remaining 1/2 t salt and 1/4 t cayenne.  Cook, stirring constantly, until the onions are slightly soft, about 2 minutes.  Slowly pour in the beer and water and mix well.

Bring to a boil and return the meatballs to the skillet.  Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, for about 1 hour, until the gravy is thick, turning and basting the meatballs with the pan gravy about every 15 minutes.

Remove from the heat and skim off any fat that has risen to the surface.

Serve with toothpicks or small plate or bowl.  I find most people want some of the gravy so we put a ladle in the crockpot so they can spoon out the meatballs and gravy together.  Emeril also suggests making a Meatball Sandwich.