Busy cooks, you’ll love this easy sheet-pan dinner with Italian Baked Chicken Meatballs, tomatoes and red onions. This is the best baked chicken meatball recipe, and the secret is in the super juicy meatball mixture bursting with Italian flavors!
You can serve these straight out of the pan with more veggies for a low-carb dinner. Or, make Italian subs for sandwich night. Better yet, try my epic chicken meatball and spaghetti idea below!
If you’ve made my easy Italian baked chicken recently, you’ll want to try these chicken meatballs. An awesome new riff that my family has been absolutely loving!
I think of these chicken meatballs as an “anytime” type dinner. You can make them any night of the week, and serve them up however you like–straight form the pan; with your favorite grain or pasta (I have a killer spaghetti dinner idea below); or make Italian subs for sandwich night!
Here’s what I love about this ground chicken meatballs dinner:
1. Easy Sheet-Pan Dinner. Anytime I can toss everything on one sheet-pan for a quick bake is a win!
2. Delicious. The secret is in the chicken meatball mixture with loads of Italian flavors (more on this later!)
3. Meatballs Made with Ground Chicken. Don’t get me wrong, I will eat saucy beefy meatballs like this Lebanese version, or even Moroccan-style lamb meatballs (both worth a try, for sure!) Still, this recipe is a great alternative, and you can use either ground chicken or ground turkey with this Italian baked meatballs recipe.
Meatball Mixture for Italian Baked Chicken Meatballs
Okay, so what’s in the flavor-packed mixture for this chicken meatball recipe? Clearly a meatball recipe starts with ground meat, and here the choice is ground chicken (or turkey). And as you guessed, some eggs and bread crumbs are used for binding. But there is more…Let’s talk flavor makers!
Flavor Makers: We’re talking Italian-style baked chicken meatballs, so the flavor-makers are decidedly Italian–a combination of garlic, fresh thyme and parsley, dried oregano and just a hint of paprika for depth. And yes, a little grated Parmesan cheese!
Pro Tip: If you’re looking for juicy chicken meatballs (or turkey meatballs) help the meatball mixture with some extra virgin olive oil. Quality Extra virgin olive oil is a healthy and important source of fat here, adding a bit of depth and moisture to the chicken meatballs.
But in addition to what goes in the meatball mixture, I love adding a little more Italian to the sheet-pan in the form of red onions and tomatoes. And why not roast the veggies with the chicken meatballs at once?!
How to make this Baked Chicken Meatball Recipe
1. Prepare the tomatoes and onions and toss them together in a large mixing bowl with a bit of good extra virgin olive oil, kosher salt and a little fresh thyme. Make sure you get the veggies coated well with the olive oil (Private Reserve extra virgin olive oil is what I used here.)Spread the veggies well on a lightly oiled sheet-pan.
2. In the same mixing bowl add the ground chicken, garlic, egg, fresh herbs, spices, Parmesan cheese and bread crumbs. Don’t forget a generous drizzle of extra virgin olive oil (this really helps the chicken meatballs to be nice and juicy!)
Mix. Mix. Mix! Make sure everything in the meatball mixture is well-incorporated.
3. Add the meatball mixture to the sheet-pan, nestle them in between the tomatoes and red onions and make sure not to crowd the pan (use a large sheet-pan for sure!)
4. Bake in 400 degrees F. heated oven for about 30 minutes or until the chicken meatballs are cooked through and the veggies are well-roasted (tomatoes will beautifully collapse releasing some juice.)
If you’re looking for more “crust” or color, you can brush the meatballs with a little extra virgin olive oil and return the sheet-pan to the oven. Raise the heat to 450 degrees F or so, and watch for the desired color (maybe another 5 minutes or so.)
How to Serve these Chicken Meatballs For Dinner
I love this sheet-pan meal! You can eat the meatballs and veggies right out of the pan with more veggies for a low-carb meal. OR serve them over your favorite garin.
For sandwich night, you can simply make Italian subs using these baked meatballs and veggies!
To turn this into an epic meatball and spaghetti dinner, here is what you do:
Cook spaghetti according to package and drain. While warm, toss spaghetti with more extra virgin olive oil and a bit of grated Parmesan cheese. Add the baked chicken meatballs with the tomatoes and onions and toss some more to combine. So good!
Gluten Free Option
For the gluten free option of this chicken meatball recipe, simply replace the bread crumbs with cornmeal. My friend who specializes in gluten free meals thinks cornmeal is the best option because it has a way of keeping the meatballs nice and tender. You can use maybe less cornmeal than the recipe requires for bread crumbs (about 1/4 cup or so is okay.)
More Recipes to Try:
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You’ll love these easy sheet-pan dinner with Italian baked chicken meatballs, tomatoes and onions. Loads of flavor in the meatball mixture from fresh herbs and spices to a bit of grated Parmesan. A drizzle of extra virgin olive oil to keep the meatballs nice and juicy!
- 1 large red onion, cut into wedges
- 6 to 7 tomatoes (Roma or tomatoes on the vine), quartered or cut into wedges
- 3 tsp fresh thyme leaves, divided
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil (I used this Private Reserve olive oil)
- Kosher salt
- 1 1/2 lb ground chicken (or ground turkey, if you like)
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 raw egg, scrambled
- 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/3 cup plain bread crumbs (see notes for gluten free option)
- 2 tsp dry oregano
- 1/2 tsp sweet paprika
- black pepper
- 1 cup fresh chopped parsley
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. And lightly brush a large sheet pan (like this one) with extra virgin olive oil.
- In a large mixing bowl, add the sliced onions and tomatoes. Sprinkle with kosher salt and about 1 1/2 tsp fresh thyme (leave the rest of the thyme for later). Drizzle a bit of extra virgin olive oil and toss to combine. Transfer to the prepared sheet-pan and spread well.
- In the same mixing bowl, now prepare the chicken meatball mixture. Add ground chicken, garlic, egg, Parmesan cheese, and bread crumbs. Add oregano, paprika, pinch of salt and black pepper, and 1 cup fresh chopped parsley. Drizzle a bit of extra virgin olive oil. Using clean hands (remove any rings, of course), mix well until the chicken meatball mixture is well-combined.
- Form the mixture into small chicken meatballs about 1 1/2 tbsp each (whatever size you choose, stick to it for even cooking.) Arrange the chicken meatballs on the same sheet pan with the tomatoes and onions (nestle them in between the veggies, making sure not to crowd the meatballs.)
- Bake for 30 minutes or so, or until meatballs begin to turn a beautiful golden brown and the tomatoes collapse. (If after they’ve baked, you’d like a little more “crust” or color to your meatballs, you can remove them from the oven briefly and brush the meatballs with extra virgin olive oil. Turn oven heat up to 450 degrees F and return the meatballs to the oven for 5 more minutes or so, watch carefully.)
- Cook’s Tips for Serving: You can serve these beautiful meatballs on top of your favorite grain or plain orzo pasta. If you’d like to turn it into a big chicken meatball and spaghetti dinner, cook spaghetti according to package and drain. Place warm spaghetti in a large serving bowl and add a generous drizzle of good extra virgin olive oil and some freshly-grated Parmesan cheese. Toss to combine. Add the baked chicken meatballs with onions and tomatoes on top, and mix again to combine. Enjoy!
- Cook’s Tip for Gluten Free Chicken Meatballs: You can obviously blitz a piece of gluten free bread in a food processor to make GF bread crumbs. A friend of mine who specializes in gluten free cooking mentioned cornmeal. She found that it made lean chicken and turkey meatballs surprisingly tender and flavorful. You can try just 1/4 cup of cornmeal in this recipe.
- Leftovers? Store cooled leftover chicken meatballs with tomatoes and onions in tight-lid containers. Refrigerate for up to 4 days. Warm over medium heat, tossing as needed (adding a little liquid to your heating pan will help.)
- Visit our Shop to browse our collection of excellent extra virgin olive oils and all-natural and organic spices.
- Category: Entree
- Method: Baked
- Cuisine: Italian
Keywords: Chicken Meatballs, Baked Chicken Meatballs, Italian Chicken Meatballs