Pizza Meatball Sliders
All your favorite pizza flavors—meat, pepperoni, cheese—in a burger! If you wish, of course, you can form the meat mixture into patties instead of meatballs. Perfect kid food.
- 1-1/2 pounds ground beef, chilled
- 1/2 pound bulk Italian sausage, chilled
- 15 slices pepperoni, finely diced
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 3 tablespoons jarred or canned pizza sauce, plus more for serving
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 12 slider buns
- Olive oil or softened butter
- 8 ounces fresh mozzarella, drained and sliced, for serving
- Lettuce or arugula leaves, for serving
Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil and place a wire cooling rack on top of it. Set aside. In a large mixing bowl, put the ground beef, Italian sausage, pepperoni, Parmesan, 3 tablespoons of the pizza sauce, as well as the salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning. Use your hands to mix; it helps if you wet them with cold water first. Divide the meat mixture into 12 portions and form into balls, rewetting your hands as necessary. Arrange on the rack on the prepared baking sheet. Brush the cut sides of the buns with olive oil or softened butter. When ready to cook, start the Traeger grill on Smoke with the lid open until the fire is established (4 to 5 minutes). Set the temperature to 350 degrees F and preheat for 10 to 15 minutes. Put the baking sheet with the meatballs on the grill grate. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the internal temperature of a meatball is 160 degrees. Grill the buns, cut sides down, until toasty and warm, about 15 minutes. Put a slice of mozzarella cheese on the bottom of each bun. Top with lettuce or arugula, then with a meatball. Spread the cut side of the top of the bun with pizza sauce, if desired, and place on top of the meatball. Serve immediately.