I’ve been making this riff on by Shutterbean’s Chicken Parmesan Meatballs for years. It’s such a staple recipe in our house. It’s a bit labor intensive up front, but so worth it for the meatball bounty you’ll have at the end!
Recipe: Chicken Parmesan Meatballs (yields 45 meatballs, inspired by Shutterbean’s Chicken Parmesan Meatballs)
3 lbs. ground chicken
2 cups panko breadcrumbs, divided into 2 bowls
1 cup parmesan cheese, divided into 2 bowls
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 onion, minced finely
1 small zucchini, cubed
2 tbsp. oregano or italian seasoning
2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. red pepper flake
2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. pepper
8 oz. shredded mozzarella cheese
Optional extras, depending on how you like to eat your meatballs:
A solid prep space is essential here – it’s all downhill if you have meat hands and are unprepared! I like to have all of my ingredients lined up and ready to go, and then leave mixing the meatballs as the last step.
In a big bowl, combine everything but the meat and mix thoroughly.
Once you’re ready to start rolling the meatballs, make sure you have a tinfoil lined pan and your extra bowl of panko/parm cheese combined ready nearby. You’re going to roll each meatball in your hands, toss in the panko/parm mixture to give it a nice coating, and then place on the pan.
It’s at this point that the Shutterbean recipe calls for pan frying the meatballs. I have done this method and it’s delicious. I more often make my meatballs in the oven though, because it’s less mess and quicker. I then air fry them just before serving to get the crunchy, golden exterior. If you go my route, bake the meatballs at 350 degrees for 25 minutes, or until the internal temperature is 165 degrees.
As I mentioned, I air fry the meatballs just before serving (3 minutes fresh out of the oven, 10 minutes from the fridge). Serve over pasta or spaghetti squash, with a side of sauce, and/or with garlic bread – whatever you like!