These chicken meatballs are inspired by Asian cuisine. It’s quick, healthy, and delicious, exactly what you need for a weeknight!
During the week we don’t want to make things more complicated than needed. This doesn’t mean you need to buy ready meals or order a delivery. These chicken meatballs are made effortless within 30 minutes. Really it’s the perfect recipe when you don’t want to be in the kitchen for too long, but you do want to eat something uplifting. Although Asian food tends to be very salty, we made this recipe super fresh by adding ginger and pomegranate to it. If you prefer to ground your own chicken and control what you eat, read on to find out how easy this is, even without a meat grinder.
What’s in the chicken meatballs?
First of all, choose the right chicken. These meatballs contain ground chicken. For those who are conscious about their health and the environment, you can choose to buy your chicken at the butcher. Ask for free-range chickens raised without antibiotics. You can ask the butcher to grind the meat for you. This way you are sure to have healthy chicken and can stay away from processed meat which is less healthy. If you want you can even grind your chicken yourself, even if you don’t have a meat grinder.
Mix the ground meat with ginger, green onion pepper, and salt and mix it well until fully combined. Now roll ping pong size balls with your hands that you first grease with olive oil. Place them on a baking tray lined with parchment paper and bake them in the oven for 15 minutes. That’s pretty much it, easy right?
How to grind chicken yourself?
When grinding your own meat, you control what you eat. You choose the type of chicken, how it was raised and fed, the cut, texture, and fat content. All you need is raw chicken meat, a baking sheet, tinfoil, a freezer, a food processor and follow these steps:
- Cut the chicken into chunks with a sharp knife
- Line a baking sheet with tinfoil and place the chicken chunks on top
- Place the baking sheet with the chicken in the freezer for 30 minutes. The chicken shouldnt be frozen but just firm.
- Put the chicken in the food processor in batches ( about 10 at the time). Pulse a few times until chopped and place in a bowl. Keep repeating until all the chunks are minced.
With these instructions, you can grind any meat you want.
What to serve it with?
You can serve the chicken meatballs with anything you like, but it tastes good with a bowl of rice and veggies of your preference on the side. We love eating bimi, some call them broccolini. These baby broccoli are from Japan and are a mix of broccoli and kailan, the Chinese broccoli. Although they look like baby’s, they contain more zinc, folic acid, antioxidants, and vitamin C than regular broccoli! But our sauteed bok choy also fits perfectly with this recipe!
Besides eating these chicken meatballs as a meal they also make a perfect appetizer when throwing a party!
Sticky Ginger Chicken Meatballs
- 500 grams ground chicken Healty choice: ask your butcher for free range, no antibiotics and to ground the chicken for you.
- 4 green onions
- 3 cm ginger
- 1 clove of garlic
- 400 grams bimi or broccoli
- 1 pomegranate
- 1 red pepper thinly sliced
- 1 tbsp sesame seeds
- 2 cups steamed rice
For the sticky sauce
- 1/3 cup soysauce
- 2 tbsp sesame oil
- 3 tbsp hoisin sauce
- 2 tbsp rice vinniger
- 1 tsp chili flakes
- 3 tbsp honey
- 1/3 cup fresh orange juice
- Preheat the oven with 220oC and cover a baking tray with parchment paper.
- Cut the green onions fine and add half of the amount to a bowl and save the rest for garnishing. Cut the red pepper in thin slices (with or without the seeds, depending on how much spice you can handle) and keep aside for garnishing as well.
- Add the ground chicken to the bowl and squash both the garlic clove and the ginger above the bowl (the garlic crusher is also very useful to squash ginger instead of grating). Finish with peper and salt and start mixing it all together with your hands.
- Add a little bit of olive oil to your hands and start making small meatballs. Put them one by one on the baking tray. It’s normal that the mixture feels very wet, it will dry quickly in the oven. Leave some space on the baking tray for the bimi.
- Transfer the meatballs in the oven for 10 minutes. After ten minutes take the meatballs out of the oven and add the bimi on the baking tray. Transfer everything back into the oven and let it bake for 5 more minutes.
- Meanwhile start making the sauce by adding all the ingredients in a saucepan and heath it up until it cooks. The sauce should get thicker while cooking, but if not you could add some maizena to the sauce. Add a little bit of maizena to a small cup and mix this with a tiny bit of water. This way you won’t get chunks of maizena in the sauce. Now add this mix to the sauce and keep stirring until the sauce thickens.
- Take the meatballs and bimi out of the oven and spread the sauces over both of them. Transfer back into the oven for 5 more minutes until the meatballs are glazed with the sauce.
- Take a bowl of steamed rice and put the meatballs on top. Pour the rest of the sauce over the meatballs en garnish with sesame seeds, red pepper and the rest of the chopped spring onion.