These chicken ricotta meatballs are absolutely delicious chicken meatballs in a savory, creamy spinach Alfredo sauce with crispy bacon. This is an awesome, comforting meal perfect for any season, and you can even make your meatballs ahead of time to use later.
Everybody loves meatballs! It’s a great skill to have great meatballs in your cooking repertoire, and knowing various ways to present them helps, too. Of course, you have your classic Italian-style tomato sauce, but this recipe is more influenced by central and northern European cooking.
We’re using high quality chicken mince here with enough fat to keep the meatballs tender and flavorsome. Overly lean ground chicken, or poor quality chicken, will toughen up your meatballs. You want them to be nice and tender, soaking up the flavor and goodness from the deliciously creamy sauce. The chicken will take on the taste of the sauce, and the sauce will take on some of the chicken’s meaty flavor, too. Like all great home-style recipes, this one involves all the ingredients working together to produce something truly impressive.
Ingredients for Chicken Ricotta Meatballs
This recipe is as easy as it is delicious. You will need simple ingredients to make these fantastic meatballs.
How to Make Chicken Ricotta Meatballs
- Add the onion, garlic, parsley and sun-dried tomatoes to your food processor, pulse until finely chopped, scraping down the sides if needed.
- In a medium bowl combine the breadcrumbs with milk. Set aside to soak for 2 minutes.
- In a large bowl combine the mixture with the chicken, the soaked breadcrumbs, egg, ricotta cheese, Parmesan cheese, Italian seasoning and salt. Mix just until combined. Don't overmix or it will be dense.
- Shape the mixture into 18-20 2.5-inch meatballs. Place the meatballs on the prepared baking sheet. Spray with cooking oil spray. Transfer to the oven and bake for 15-20 minutes or until the meatballs are crisp on the outside and cooked through.
Spinach Alfredo Sauce
How to Make Alfredo Spinach Sauce
- Heat a large skillet or nonstick pan over medium heat. Fry bacon until crispy. Transfer to a plate. To the same pan, melt butter.
- Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.
- Add the cream and bring to a gentle simmer. Cook for 2 minutes.
- Season with Italian seasoning, black pepper and salt.
- Whisk in the Parmesan cheese until melted.
- Finally, add the baby spinach and cook for 1-2 minutes or until wilted.
Can You Make Creamy Chicken Ricotta Meatballs Ahead of Time?
You can bake your meatballs before you make your sauce. It’s great and convenient for that very reason.
Once you’ve made your meatballs, it’s really easy to store them. Put them in an airtight container in the fridge and they’ll keep for about three days. You can always freeze them and allow them to defrost in the fridge, too, if you need them to keep for longer. Reheating the meatballs is easy, too. Place the thawed meatballs in a preheated oven at 350 F for forty minutes, or microwave them for two to three minutes.
What To Serve With Creamy Chicken Meatballs
These chicken meatballs are really so versatile! Because they have quite a mild - not to be mistaken for bland, mind you - flavor, they’re well suited to a variety of pairings. The classic meatball pairing of pasta, of course, is always a great option. We suggest a long, flat pasta such as fettuccine or pappardelle for this recipe.
You could also serve them over a bed of Jasmine Rice, as the rice will nicely soak up your creamy sauce. We also love this recipe served with mashed or RoastedPpotatoes, because your potatoes will go really well with the sauce. Think of it as similar to serving a stew - potatoes, and maybe even some nice homemade Naan Bread, are the classic accompaniment to such a meal.
A side of nice crusty bread to soak up the sauce wouldn’t go astray, either!
Top Creamy Chicken Meatball Tips
- You should use high quality ground chicken for this recipe. The chicken is the star of the show here, so you want it to really shine by using the best chicken mince you can find.
- Likewise, we strongly recommend that you use fresh herbs. If you can, get fresh parsley or basil. They will bring plenty of flavor and a lovely, fresh aroma to your dinner. Dried herbs are OK, too, but they don’t have the same immediacy of flavor.
- You can make your meatballs ahead of time, storing them in the fridge. That way, you just need to reheat them as you prepare the sauce, saving time.
- If you’ve made your meatballs ahead of time, and you find that you have more than you need for your sauce, you could even try using the chicken meatballs in a marinara sauce. They’re just that versatile!
More Ground Chicken Recipes
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