One bite of these Pecan Chicken Meatballs and you’ll be hooked! Juicy on the inside with a delicious, nutty crunch on the outside!
This post is sponsored by the American Pecan Council. All opinions and text are my own.
My family loves fun dinner nights. I like to mix up what cuisine I’m cooking throughout the week like most moms. But my guys really love when we do a small bites (AKA appetizers for dinner) night. I make sliders, shrimp, or meatballs and we turn them into a meal with sides and salads. These Pecan Chicken Meatballs are the latest addition to our small bites dinners and boy were they a hit! My husband said they’re one of the best chicken recipes I’ve made.
PECAN CHICKEN MEATBALLS
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You might be wondering about why I’d put pecans and spinach in my ground chicken meatballs. The answer is simple. Spinach is a great way to get some extra veggies in our diet, and pecan are the original supernut! Pecans are a great way to add plant-protein, fiber, good fats, and essential minerals to our meals. They’re naturally sweet and have a great crunch my family loves. Add them to chicken meatballs and you’ve got a filling dinner that’ll satisfy the whole family.
How to make chicken meatballs
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, combine ground chicken, spinach, lemon juice, egg, garlic, onion powder, paprika, salt, pepper, cayenne (if adding), and 1/2 cup pecans.
Mix all ingredients together until well combined.
Roll chicken mixture into meatballs – a little over 1 tablespoon.
Place reserved 1/2 cup pecans in a bowl. Roll meatballs in pecans to coat, and then place prepared baking sheet.
Bake for 20 to 30 minutes until meatballs are cooked through.
Serve warm with sauces for dipping or over pasta.
So easy you guys! My favorite way to serve them meatballs is over some pasta drizzled in a garlic lemon butter sauce with a little fresh parsley mixed in. The meatballs are definitely the star of this dinner.
I love to serve a green salad and some crusty bread alongside these meatballs. For the salad, I use romaine lettuce, a handful of pecans, fresh blueberries, sliced avocados, Parmesan cheese, and squeeze lemon juice for the dressing. You can even drizzle on a little olive oil if you like. It’s a bright and refreshing salad that goes great with these nutritious chicken meatballs!
Now, you could stop and these meatballs as soon as they cool off a little and they would be delicious. But I have a couple of tips for making them extra tasty.
What sauce with chicken meatballs?
What to serve chicken meatballs with
- The easiest thing to serve with these chicken meatballs is a green salad. You can’t go wrong there.
- I like using them for meatball subs. The crunch from the pecans is a great contrast to the soft bread.
- Put them together with some goat cheese and grapes or roasted red peppers.
- My favorite though is to add them in with some pasta. Toss your pasta in butter or olive oil, garlic, lemon juice, add some Parmesan cheese, and parsley and you’re in business!
Try these other appetizers turned dinner!
- Philly Cheese Steak Sliders
- Hawaiian Chicken Bites
- Spicy Garlic Shrimp
- Mexican Chicken Empanadas
- More dinner recipes…
I swear I could pecans in everything!!
- Pecan Rice Pilaf
- Onion Cranberry Pecan Cheese Ball
- Pecan Crusted Chicken Sheet Pan Dinner
- Sweet and Sriracha Pecans
- More pecan recipes…
- 1 pound ground chicken
- 1/4 cup spinach chopped
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/4 teaspoon paprika
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper optional
- 1 cup finely chopped fresh pecan pieces
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a large bowl, combine ground chicken, spinach, lemon juice, egg, garlic, onion powder, paprika, salt, pepper, cayenne (if adding), and 1/2 cup pecans.
- Mix all ingredients together until well combined.
- Roll chicken mixture into meatballs - a little over 1 tablespoon.
- Place reserved 1/2 cup pecans in a bowl. Roll meatballs in pecans to coat, and then place prepared baking sheet.
- Bake for 20 to 30 minutes until meatballs are cooked through.
- Serve warm with sauces for dipping or over pasta.
*One serving (28g) of pecans contains 18g unsaturated fat and only 2g of saturated fat.