This is seriously one of the easiest appetizer to have on hand. The first time I attempted it was on a whim; I had all the ingredients out and thought of experimenting. It was definitely a hit! I make a batch of uncooked meatballs and freeze them for quick snacks or for entertaining. The Costco bag of organic skinless boneless chicken thighs work well as I find it more flavorful and moist than chicken breast, but you could use either.
The best way to mince the chicken at home is to cut it into medium cubes and freeze for about 15-20 minutes ONLY till well chilled. Then, fill food processor half-way and pulse till you get a fine mince.
Easy Baked Chicken Meatballs
(About 50 1-inch meatballs)
- 1 lb skinless boneless chicken thighs (dry thoroughly if washed)
- 1 medium onion – peeled & quartered
- 1 inch ginger – peeled & rough chopped
- 2 big garlic cloves – peeled
- 1/2 cup cilantro – washed & drained well
- 1/2 cup fresh mint leaves – washed & drained well
- 4-6 green chillies
- salt to taste **
- cookie tray
- wax paper
1) Mince the chicken according to instructions above. Set aside in a large bowl.
2) In the same food processor bowl, add the rest of the ingredients and pulse the food processor till everything is chopped fine. Make sure not to over process as the onions will start to release moisture. You may have to scrape down the sides a few times.
3) Add the onion mixture and salt to the chicken and mix well.
4) Line a large cookie tray with wax / parchment paper
5) Shape into 1-inch balls and lay on the cookie tray, making sure they do not touch. Freeze for 2 hours.
6) Remove the meatballs from the tray into a freezer ziplock and store back in the freezer. (Freezing on a cookie sheet first ensures that the meatballs do not clump together in the freezer.)
7) To cook frozen meatballs, preheat oven to 350* F and bake on a greased pan for 15-18 mins. If cooking thawed, reduce cooking time to 12-15 minutes.
** To check if I have added enough salt, I cook about a teaspoon of the mix in the microwave and taste before forming all into balls.