With just four simple and affordable ingredients, you can make tender Baked Chicken Meatballs to share with the kids. Bonus: You can tuck a veggie into the mix, and they are perfect to batch-cook and stash in the freezer!
Baked Chicken Meatballs
Meatballs are one of the foods I grew up eating regularly and turn to as easy comfort food. I like all kinds of meatballs (and my kids do, too!), and these basic but delicious chicken meatballs are often in our meal plan. They use super simple ingredients, are easy to mix together, and are a wonderfully easy-to-eat texture for little kids.
I love to double this recipe and stash half of them into the freezer for a future meal. Cook once, eat twice, my friends!
(You may also like my Pesto Meatballs, which is a variation on this recipe with zucchini and pesto.)
My kids are big fans of these meatballs since they’re packed with flavor AND they’re easy to eat. With super simple and healthy ingredients, these are a favorite that I like just as much as they do. These are also a great prep food since they freeze well and taste just as good once they’re warmed up again.
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Ingredients You Need
To make this recipe, you’ll need these ingredients:
- Ground chicken: Look for ground chicken near the other cuts of chicken in your supermarket. It’s really easy to make chicken meatballs when you start with it already ground.
- Italian-flavored bread crumbs: This adds nice flavor without any extra work. I use regular-style bread crumbs here, not Panko, for a texture I prefer.
- Grated Parmesan: This style of Parmesan typically has the most flavor, so I prefer to use it here. You can use shredded Parmesan if that’s what you have.
- Egg: I use an egg to help bind the meatballs and add moisture. If you need to make these egg-free, omit it and add a splash of milk instead.
- Carrots: Shredded carrots are optional as the recipe works well without them, but they are an easy way to add a veggie to this recipe.
I’m breaking down the steps to make these chicken meatballs here so you know what to expect, but be sure to scroll down to the bottom of the page for the full recipe including the amounts and the timing.
- Shred carrots into a medium bowl.
- Add the rest of the ingredients.
- Mix together the ingredients with clean hands.
- Using a tablespoon, roll together 2-tablespoon meatballs and place on baking sheet, evenly spread apart. Bake until golden brown, and serve or store!
TIP: You can make a double batch and freeze half for later.
Freezer-Friendly Chicken Meatballs
These chicken meatballs freeze well. Let cool fully, store in a freezer bag, and freeze them for up to 6 months. You can warm them in tomato sauce or heat them individually in the microwave in 15-second increments until warmed through.
TIP: Either thaw the meatballs in the fridge, simmer them in tomato sauce to warm, or microwave them in 15 to 30-second increments.
Easy Meal-Prep Meatballs
I love making these meatballs to have on hand for lunch for myself and for my toddler, especially the version with the carrots. I dice them up and store them in the fridge in a heat-safe container, then warm just briefly before serving to him. You could also pack them in a thermos to send to day care as an easy hot lunch.
Best Tips for Success
- Add ½ cup shredded carrots (I prefer the thinner texture from grating them at home with a box grater) to the mix to add a veggie.
- You can use gluten-free bread crumbs if needed.
- Double the recipe to make more meatballs at once.
- Use 1 tablespoon mixture to make mini meatballs and bake for closer to 18-20 minutes.
- Serve with Marinara sauce, Pesto, Cheese Sauce, or a side of ketchup or any other favorite dip.
- Dice for older babies or younger toddlers as needed.
- Let them cool fully, and you can freeze in a freezer bag for up to 6 months.
- Thaw overnight in the fridge, simmer in tomato sauce to warm, or warm in 15 to 30-second increments in the microwave.
I’d love to hear your feedback on this recipe if you try it so please comment below!
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F and line a rimmed baking sheet with foil. Coat with nonstick spray.
In a medium bowl, mix the ingredients together with clean hands. Use a tablespoon measuring spoon to measure out 2-tablespoon-size meatballs. Roll into balls and place on the prepared baking sheet.
Bake for 24-26 minutes or until golden brown and cooked through.
(You can also make them smaller as 1-tablespoon balls and bake for 20-22 minutes.)
Serve warm or set aside to cool and freeze.
- Let them cool fully and store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. Or freeze in a freezer bag for up to 6 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge, simmer in tomato sauce to warm, or warm in 15 to 30-second increments in the microwave.
- Use store-bought ground chicken to make this easy.
- I prefer the thinner texture from grating a whole carrot on a box grater.
- Serve with Marinara Sauce, Pesto, Cheese Sauce or a side of ketchup or any other favorite dip.
- Dice for older babies or younger toddlers as needed.
- Gluten-free: Use gluten-free bread crumbs if needed.
- Dairy-free: Use vegan Parmesan cheese.
- Egg-free: Omit the egg and add 1 tablespoon milk.
Serving: 2meatballs, Calories: 157kcal, Carbohydrates: 8g, Protein: 14g, Fat: 7g, Saturated Fat: 3g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 3g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 74mg, Sodium: 292mg, Potassium: 335mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 1g, Vitamin A: 100IU, Vitamin C: 1mg, Calcium: 101mg, Iron: 1mg
This post was first published August 2020.