buffalo chicken meatballs

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Why I love this buffalo chicken meatballs recipe

I love chicken wings. I think they’re the ultimate game day appetizer and they are even better when they’re bone in. But, when it comes to entertaining on game day, I don’t think they’re the easiest to serve.

Obviously, you could keep them warm in a crockpot or chafing dish, but that’s when they start to lose the crispiness that makes them so amazing in the first place. That’s where buffalo chicken meatballs come in handy. Little, flavorful chicken balls topped with that buffalo sauce we all love so much.

Meatballs are perfect for keeping warm in the crockpot. They’re perfect for making ahead of time, and they’re easily baked in the oven which makes them perfect for hosting a game day party – just like my favorite baked hamburgers

More meatball recipes: keftedes (Greek meatballs) / baked Italian meatballs / Asian meatballs / meatball stroganoff

buffalo chicken meatballs with dairy free ranch

Here’s what you’ll need to make buffalo chicken meatballs

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You might also want a slow cooker or warming station for keeping your buffalo meatballs warm, and some cocktail picks for serving.

Chicken meatball ingredients:

This recipe calls for ground chicken. The leaner the meat you buy, the drier your meatballs will be. I like to use a mixture of dark and white meat chicken. If you’re using a leaner meat, you may want to add an egg to your mixture to add moisture.

If you can’t find ground chicken, you can substitute ground turkey and this recipe still will work great.

buffalo chicken meatball ingredients

How to make buffalo chicken meatballs

Mix your ingredients. Place all of the ingredients in a large mixing bowl and use clean hands or a fork to mix them together. Be sure not to over mix your ingredients. If your mixture seems especially wet, add a few tablespoons of extra breadcrumbs.

Scoop and roll your mixture into small meatballs. I recommend using a cookie scoop to help portion your meatballs into equal sizes, but you can do it by hand too. Once you scoop the meatball, then gently roll until it forms a ball shape.

buffalo chicken meatballs recipe before being baked

Bake the meatballs. Place your meatballs onto a cookie sheet. I like to line mine with parchment paper to make cleanup easier. Bake them in a 400˚F oven for 15 – 20 minutes, or until the meatballs should reach an internal temperature of 165˚F.

Toss with buffalo sauce. Let the meatballs cool for a few minutes after taking them out of the oven. Then, transfer them to a mixing bowl (or your slow cooker/warming dish), and toss with buffalo sauce. Use as little or as much as you’d like.

Serve your buffalo meatballs with dairy free ranch and celery sticks for the ultimate buffalo chicken experience.

chicken meatballs recipe with buffalo sauce

FAQs and tips for making the best chicken meatballs

How do you keep meatballs moist? The best way to keep your meatballs for drying out is to use a fattier meat because lean meat makes drier meatballs. Also be sure not to overcook your meatballs.

How do you keep meatballs from falling apart? Meatballs fall apart from a lack of moisture and binding ingredients. If you’re meatballs are falling apart, try adding an egg, a little extra breadcrumb or a splash of liquid (a little extra buffalo sauce in the case).

What can I use to bind meatballs instead of egg? In this recipe, I have used a combination of breadcrumbs and liquid to hold the meatballs together. That, along with the added moisture from the fattier meat, keeps this meatballs together.

buffalo chicken meatballs recipe

Why are my meatballs rubbery? Why are my meatballs tough? If you’re meatballs are tough or rubbery, you probably over mixed the meat or rolled the mixture too tightly.

Is it better to fry or bake meatballs? I prefer to bake my meatballs because it gives them an even cook and the process is much less messy. It’s also a bit healthier since we don’t add any extra oil.

Is it OK to make meatballs the night before? Yes! Meatballs are perfect for making ahead if you’re prepping for a party or want to save time on the day you’re serving this recipe. These meatballs will keep in the fridge for up to 4 days, but I recommend serving them sooner if you can (fresh always tastes better).

buffalo chicken meatballs

More game day favorites:

More chicken recipes:

closeup of buffalo chicken meatballs on a wooden skewer

Buffalo Chicken Meatballs Recipe

This buffalo chicken meatballs recipe is an easy alternative to chicken wings. They’re baked in the oven until crispy, tossed with buffalo sauce and served with creamy, dairy free ranch dressing. Enjoy them as a meal or serve them as a game day appetizer. #dairyfree #eggfree

  • Author: Melissa Belanger
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 36 meatballs 1x
  • Category: Appetizer
  • Method: Baked
  • Cuisine: American



For the meatballs:

  • 2 pounds ground chicken
  • 1 1/2 cups Panko breadcrumbs
  • 4 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 teaspoon minced garlic (2 cloves)
  • 1 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons buffalo sauce

For serving:

  • Buffalo sauce
  • Ranch dressing


  1. Preheat oven to 400˚F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, gently mix the meatball ingredients together. Roll the mixture into 1 1/2-inch meatballs and place on baking sheet.
  3. Bake for 15 – 20 minutes, or until the internal temperature of the meatballs reaches 165˚F. Remove from oven and let cool for several minutes.
  4. Transfer to a large bowl and toss with buffalo sauce. Serve immediately or keep warm in a slow cooker on warm/low setting.


Nutritional information reflects meatballs + 1 cup buffalo sauce for serving.


  • Serving Size: 3 meatballs
  • Calories: 223
  • Sugar: 0.9 g
  • Sodium: 1258 mg
  • Fat: 13.4 g
  • Saturated Fat: 2.9 g
  • Carbohydrates: 10.9 g
  • Fiber: 1.3 g
  • Protein: 15.1 g
  • Cholesterol: 64.2 mg

Keywords: dairy free, egg free

Last Updated on November 11, 2021 by Melissa Belanger

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Recipe rating

One Comment

  1. Seemed dry but it could be a user error by using lean meat. But very delicious nonetheless.