The Ultimate Crockpot Buffalo Chicken Meatballs – tender meatballs made with ground chicken, celery, carrots and green onion then covered in a spicy buffalo sauce! These easy chicken meatballs are the lighter healthier version of your favorite buffalo wings – the perfect party appetizer!
The Best Crockpot Meatballs
Ok. I’m kinda obsessed. Can you tell?
Like, I seriously can’t stop posting all the game day stuff. I think it’s just the athlete in me that is bursting with excitement for that final game! Although, truth be told I wish it was the Cowboys playing. But, I’ll still cheer for the Rams because, well… their coach is good looking and I don’t want Tom Brady to win again. I’m kinda over the Patriots and have been for a while.
On a side note, Cason was reading a book to me the other day and one of the characters names was Mrs. Watkins. Without a beat, he stopped and said “Mommy, Watkins. That’s a football player. I think he’s a quarterback. No, he’s a wide receiver.” haha.. I knew exactly who he was talking about, Sammy Waktins. But it just cracked me up that his mind goes straight to football.
I guess the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.
Speaking of football, let’s get to what your Game Day menu should consist of, shall we!
- Wings, Wings and more Wings
- Beer Braised Slow Cooker Brisket Sliders – the horseradish sauce takes these over the top!
- Bacon Guacamole – it’s not a party without guacamole!
- Baked Loaded Sweet Potato Wedges – because they are covered with cheese, bacon and drizzled with ranch. YUM!
- Last but not least -these Saucy Buffalo Chicken Meatballs
I have plenty more on my list, probably queso of some sort. My friend, Becky from the Cookie Rookie makes an awesome White Queso if you’re in the market for a fantastic recipe!
But, I digress. Moving on to why these Easy Saucy Crock Pot Buffalo Chicken Meatballs need to be on your game day appetizer table.
How to Make Buffalo Chicken Meatballs:
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- To a large bowl add ground chicken, grated carrots, finely diced celery, sliced green onion, smoked paprika, salt, pepper, 1 egg and gluten free panko.
- Using your hand, mix until all the ingredients are combined. (be careful not to over mix)
- Form into 1″ balls and place on a wire rack lined baking sheet.
- Bake meatballs for 5-7 minutes or until lightly browned.
Once this process is done you have a couple options. #1 You can finish the meatballs in the oven for an additional 15-20 minutes then remove from oven and toss with buffalo sauce. Option #2 Freeze the meatballs and save for later or option #3 you could place them directly in the crock pot to finish the process.
Can You Freeze Buffalo Chicken Meatballs?
Yes. Cook meatballs for 5-7 minutes in a 400 degree F oven. Remove from oven and let cool. Place meatballs in a freezer safe storage bag and store up to 3 months. To reheat Buffalo Chicken Meatballs, place the frozen meatballs in a crock pot with 3/4 cup of buffalo sauce. Cook on HIGH for 2 hours. Serve with drizzle of ranch dressing. (optional)
For this recipe, because the meatballs are homemade you have to cook them a little bit before placing them in the crock pot to “finish the job.” So I start these Buffalo Chicken Meatballs in the oven and baked them until slightly brown or your finger bounces back a little when you touch them. This ensures that your meatballs won’t fall apart once in the crock pot.
How to Cook Buffalo Chicken Meatballs in the Crockpot:
- In the Oven – bake meatballs for 20-25 minutes at 400 degrees F. Remove and toss with buffalo sauce.
- On the Stove – heat a large skillet to medium high heat. Add 1 tablespoon of grape seed oil and place meatballs in skillet. Cook each side for 5-7 minutes, turning throughout. Remove and toss with buffalo sauce.
- In the Crock Pot – for homemade meatballs bake at 400 degrees F for 5-7 minutes. Place meatballs in crock pot and cover with buffalo sauce. Cook on LOW for 2 hours.
So, now that you know all you need to know about how to make these meatballs. Let’s talk flavor!
First off, the meatball mixture itself is filled with all the veggies you think of when you think of buffalo wings. Celery. Carrots. Green Onions. Then I added in garlic and smoked paprika for more flavor and an egg as a binding agent as well as gluten free panko. The meatball itself is already delicious, I know because I tried it before covering it with buffalo sauce.
Secondly, these wouldn’t be Buffalo Chicken Meatballs without the buffalo sauce. So once the meatballs are slightly cooked in the oven, basically enough to “hold form” transfer to the crock pot and douse them with buffalo sauce. Then you can cook on LOW for 2 hours.
Why Do I Like the Crockpot Version of These Buffalo Chicken Meatballs?
Because the meatballs are cooking in the buffalo sauce for 2 hours. Which means all that sauce is seeping into those meatballs, allowing for maximum buffalo wing impact!
Seriously, you’re gonna to swoon over these and wonder where they’ve been your whole life!
What to serve with Crockpot Buffalo Chicken Meatballs?
- Easy 20 Minute Sheet Pan Chicken Nachos
- Baked Sweet & Spicy BBQ Chicken Wings
- Sticky Sweet ‘n Spicy Chili Lime Baked Chicken Wings
- Pulled Pork Sliders with Cabbage Slaw
The Ultimate Crockpot Buffalo Chicken Meatballs – tender meatballs made with ground chicken, celery, carrots and green onion then covered in a spicy buffalo sauce! The lighter healthier version of your favorite buffalo wings!
- 1 lb. ground chicken
- 1/2 cup diced celery
- 2 green onions, thinly sliced
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 carrot, grated
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 egg
- 1/2 cup gluten free panko
- 3/4 cup buffalo sauce
- 1/4 cup ranch dressing
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- In a large bowl add ground chicken, celery, green onions, garlic, carrot, smoked paprika, salt, pepper, egg and panko. Using your hands mix everything together until combined.
- Using a small scoop or large spoon, scoop out chicken mixture and form 1″ balls. (you should get about 24 meatballs.)
- Place meatballs on a wire rack lined baking sheet. Bake for for 5-7 minutes, or until lightly browned. (you want them to be somewhat firm so they don’t fall apart in the crock pot)
- Add meatballs to a crock pot, pour buffalo sauce over the meatballs. Using a spoon, gently toss to coat all the meatballs.
- Cook on LOW for 2 hours.
- Remove and drizzle with ranch dressing.
- Serving Size: 2 meatballs + ranch
- Calories: 113
- Sugar: 1 g
- Sodium: 683 mg
- Fat: 7 g
- Saturated Fat: 2 g
- Carbohydrates: 6 g
- Fiber: 1 g
- Protein: 8 g
- Cholesterol: 46 g
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