French Onion Chicken Meatballs

October 6, 2021


Recently someone asked me what my food philosophy is, or my POV. And I thought about it and realized it is somewhere between that romantic rustic country kitchen – one with a fire going, with some dogs and a bowl of rising bread nearby – and ‘I have 20 minutes in between getting home from the grocery store and leaving for football practice to make dinner’. What do we call that POV? Old world meets new world? Classic meets modern? Anyone else feel that way?

Either way, this dinner perfectly fits this food philosophy. The feel of a slow cooked french onion soup with the stick to your ribs in a healthy way chicken meatballs? Yes please. I actually wanted to make this recipe because it combined my husbands two favorite things and let me tell you, he was thrilled with the leftovers.

But the best is that it is a pretty quick recipe since it has you bake the meatballs while the the onions are cooking, cutting your cook time in half. Multitasking is the middle name of whatever we’re calling my food perspective. Can I get an amen?

Our crew was split down the middle for a carb vehicle for these meatballs – team egg noodle vs. team mashed potatoes. I was part of the later and loved how the gravy soaked into the potatoes, but both teams pretty much won since everyone loved this dish. This would also be AH-mazing in between some crusty bread for a twist on a meatball sub.

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If you haven’t already memorized your favorite meatball recipe, may I suggest that it is a huge help when you are rushing and you just need to get food on the table? We put meatballs into our favorite simmer tomato sauce, into soups, and into the oven to bake so frequently that it helps to memorize certain ratios – for every 1 pound of the meat of your choice, it is 1 tsp. salt, 2 eggs, 1/4 cup bread crumbs, 1/4-1/2 cup cheese, 2 cloves of garlic (use that garlic press and it is so easy) and a handful of chopped parsley. This is also pretty close to how I make mini-meatloaves too. So whether you are making chicken, turkey, beef or other meatballs, it is always the same format, and once you have it down it goes really fast. Also, stale bread in the Ninja blender makes the best breadcrumbs.

This is the perfect busy night, crowd pleasing dish. We’re so excited to add this to our dinner rotation, hope you get to try it soon!

French Onion Chicken Meatballs



2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, for baking sheet

1 lb. ground chicken

1/2 c. shredded Gruyère

1/4 c. bread crumbs

2 tbsp. freshly chopped parsley

1 large egg, beaten

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 tsp. kosher salt

Freshly ground black pepper



4 tbsp. butter

2 large onions, thinly sliced

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 c. low-sodium beef broth

2 tsp. freshly chopped thyme, plus more for garnish

Kosher salt

Freshly ground black pepper

1 1/2 c. shredded Gruyère

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  1. Preheat oven to 425°. Line a large baking sheet with foil and rub with oil.
  2. Make meatballs: In a large bowl, combine ground chicken, Gruyère, bread crumbs, parsley, egg, and garlic. Season with salt and pepper. Form into 16 meatballs, then place on prepared baking sheet and bake until golden and cooked through, 25 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile make sauce: In a large skillet over medium heat, melt butter. Add onions and cook until very soft and golden, 25 minutes, stirring often. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, 1 minute more. Add broth and thyme and season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and let simmer until slightly thickened, 10 minutes.
  4. Add meatballs to skillet and sprinkle with Gruyère. Cover and cook until meatballs are warmed through and cheese is melty, 5 minutes. Serve warm, garnished with thyme.

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