Chicken Parmesan Meatballs with Marinara Sauce
This Italian dish is always a huge crowd-pleaser. Each beautiful meatball has a soft melted mozzarella center. I use bocconcini for this, the little egg-sized balls of mozzarella, literally meaning “little bites,” but if you can’t find those, just cut up a larger ball into small chunks. These meatballs are cheesy and delicious and make for a perfect family weeknight dinner.
First you make the chicken mixture:
Then you insert the mozzarella into the center of each meatball and roll it up:
Next you dust the meatballs with flour and fry them:
That’s basically it! Just add marinara sauce and simmer until cooked! I always make extra and the kids take these to school as snacks!
- 1/2 kg (1 pound) ground chicken breast
- 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 1/3 cup bread crumbs
- 2 eggs
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1/2 tsp dried red pepper flakes
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- Small mozzarella balls
- Flour for dusting
- olive oil for frying
- Homemade Marinara sauce or 1 jar ready sauce
- Fresh basil for garnish
- Cooked pasta for serving
- About 8 medium size tomatoes, roughly chopped
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 3-4 cloves of garlic
- 1 Tbsp tomato paste
- salt, black pepper, and oregano to taste
- a pinch of sugar (optional)
- Combine the ground chicken (I usually buy whole chicken breasts and cut into chunks, then grind in the food processor — works beautifully), parmesan, bread crumbs, eggs, salt, black pepper, red pepper, oregano, parsley, and olive oil in a mixing bowl until evenly mixed.
- Form the mixture into golf ball size meatballs and press one small mozzarella ball into each, making sure the meat mixture completely covers the mozzarella.
- Dust each meatball lightly with flour and brown on all sides in olive oil over a medium heat. You do not need to cook them through at this point. Once they are browned, set aside. You might need to fry these in batches.
- In a large dutch oven or pot, add the meatballs to the marinara sauce, bring to a boil, and then simmer over a low heat until the meatballs are cooked through, about 20 minutes.
- Serve over pasta and garnish with fresh basil.
- For homemade marinara: Saute the onion and garlic in olive oil for about 1-2 minutes, then add the rest of the ingredients. Cook over medium heat until the tomatoes are completely softened. Using a hand blender, puree the mixture. Put back on the fire over low heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes.