Chicken-Zucchini Meatballs {Paleo}

by Amy on 30 March 2014

Chicken-Zucchini MeatballsToday, I’m participating in a fun blogger event — the Secret Recipe Club. How does it work? Every blogger is secretly assigned another blog + chooses a recipe from that blog to make. On reveal day (today!), all of our posts go up at the same time, + everyone gets to see who was assigned to their blog, which recipe they chose, + how it turned out. Fun, huh?

I was assigned A Calculated Whisk, a blog full of both tasty sweets AND super scrumptious savory dishes. Y’all may know that I’m a serious meatball lover (as evidenced by My Favorite Meatballs, these Honey-Chipotle Turkey Meatballs, + this Italian Wedding Soup with mini-meatballs, to name a few), so I knew immediately what recipe I wanted to try: these Chicken-Zucchini Meatballs. And y’all, they were AMAZING. They are packed full of flavor, with a wonderfully-caramelized exterior + a tender, juicy, flavorful inside. These were so good that I had them for lunch, right after I made them, and then again for dinner a few hours later. Gotta love a double meatball day! I served mine with zucchini “pasta,” but they’d also be fab with couscous, cauliflower-rice, or traditional pasta.

Thank you to Becky for introducing me to these incredibly wonderful meatballs + to the Secret Recipe Club for connecting me, yet again, with fantastic bloggers + amazing recipes! For all my previous Secret Recipe Club recipes, click here – there are TONS of awesome ones!

Chicken-Zucchini Meatballs

Chicken-Zucchini Meatballs

Makes about 14 meatballs, adapted from A Calculated Whisk


1 medium zucchini, grated
1 shallot, grated
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1 pound ground chicken
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup almond flour**
1/4 cup coconut flour**
(**NOTE: if you’re not concerned with keeping this recipe Paleo, you can substitute 3/4 cup breadcrumbs instead of the almond + coconut flours)
1/2 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, plus extra for salting the zucchini
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup pasta sauce, either homemade or store-bought


Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Put the grated zucchini in a wire sieve, sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon of salt, and set aside for about 15 minutes. This will draw the moisture out of the zucchini. After about 15 minutes, squeeze the excess moisture out of the zucchini.

In a large bowl, combine the (squeezed-out) zucchini, shallot, garlic, ground chicken, egg, almond + coconut flours (or breadcrumbs, if you’re using those instead), Italian seasoning, salt, + pepper. Mix until just combined (taking care not to over-mix!), using a large spoon or your hands.

Roll the mixture into roughly 14 golf ball-sized meatballs.

Set a large ovenproof skillet over medium heat + add the oil. Once it is shimmering, add the meatballs. Cook until browned on all sides, about 8 minutes. Move the skillet to the oven + bake the meatballs for 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven (remember, the handle will be hot!) + pour the pasta sauce over the meatballs, swirling the pan to coat the meatballs. Bake for another 5 minutes, or until the meatballs are cooked through. (Keep an eye on your meatballs in the oven – they can dry out if overcooked.)

print this recipe print this recipe

EmailTwitterFacebookStumbleUponGoogle BookmarksShare

{ 44 comments… read them below or add one }

1 ashley - baker by nature March 31, 2014 at 7:25 am

What a yummy, healthy dinner idea! Love love love anything resembling spaghetti and meatballs 😉

2 Amber @ Caleigh's Kitchen March 31, 2014 at 8:49 am

That secret recipe club sounds so fun! I really need to get in it!
These look yummy!!

3 Becky @ A Calculated Whisk March 31, 2014 at 8:49 am

Hi Amy! I am so glad you enjoyed the meatballs–love your photographs & the adaptations you made. I’m also happy to have found your blog through the SRC! I’m also from Boston and I studied Spanish in college, too. My boyfriend is from TN (Chattanooga) and eager to move back, so I may end up a transplant in Tennessee someday! :)

4 amy March 31, 2014 at 9:02 am

They were fantastic, Becky – thank you so much! And I love how much we have in common. Sounds like we’re kindred bloggy spirits! =) If you wind up in Tennessee, give me a shout – I’d love to meet up!

5 SallyBR March 31, 2014 at 9:07 am

I firmly believe a person cannot ever have too many meatball recipes, and this one is calling my name, so I’ll add it right away to my Pinterest board..

great choice!

Have a great Reveal Day!

6 Leah | So, How's It Taste? March 31, 2014 at 9:12 am

Yum, yum, yum! This looks so good and I haven’t had meatballs in ages. Love the zucchini noodles, too!

7 Traci March 31, 2014 at 9:31 am

Great SRC pick this month. I love meatballs and your combination sounds amazing!

8 Dixya @ Food, Pleasure, and Health March 31, 2014 at 9:38 am

this is just wonderful, i love making these kind of meatballs in big batch and freeze them. I will have to try this version.

9 Dorothy at Shockingly Delicious March 31, 2014 at 10:13 am

Any recipe that you eat for both lunch and dinner the same has GOT to be awesome!

10 Adri March 31, 2014 at 12:54 pm

Meatballs rule. This I know. These sound wonderful, and I think your changes are really great. I always enjoy there mystery recipes!

11 Christine March 31, 2014 at 1:23 pm

Yummy! I love how you made these Paleo! Looks like a perfect dinner!

12 Jess @ Flying on Jess Fuel March 31, 2014 at 1:24 pm

I love the idea of using almond and coconut flours in place of breadcrumbs! I never would have thought of that! The meatballs look delish!

13 Meriem @ Culinary Couture March 31, 2014 at 2:33 pm

I love this recipe! Chicken meatballs are my favorite!

14 Tara March 31, 2014 at 2:43 pm

Yum! I’ve never tried zucchini in meatballs before. So unique!

15 amy March 31, 2014 at 2:46 pm

I hadn’t either, Tara, until I tried these! I was skeptical of how they’d be with zucchini in there, but they turned out amazing!

16 Maggie March 31, 2014 at 3:10 pm

These look delicious and a great way of using up those extra zucchini Maggie x

17 Luv What You Do March 31, 2014 at 5:35 pm

I have been craving meatballs and just threw some in my crockpot (although I’m not sure they will turn out). I am going to have to make these and hide the zucchini since my boyfriend thinks he doesnt like it. Ha ha!

18 amy March 31, 2014 at 6:01 pm

Ha! I always approve of sneaking in veggies for our husbands/boyfriends. =) Hope your meatballs turned out great!

19 Melissa March 31, 2014 at 6:06 pm

These meatballs sound amazing! I love that you served them with zucchini pasta instead of regular pasta, too! Great pick this month :)

20 Nicole (@hapatite) March 31, 2014 at 11:19 pm

Wow, these look so scrumptious!

21 Choc Chip Uru April 1, 2014 at 3:56 am

Delicious idea for meatballs, so wonderful 😀

Choc Chip Uru

22 Emily @ Life on Food April 1, 2014 at 5:39 am

I love this idea. I tend to put carrots in my meatballs for a veggie and a bit of sweetness. I will have to try out zucchini. Great pick!!

23 amy April 1, 2014 at 6:07 am

Love the idea of putting carrots in meatballs – I’ll have to try that, Emily!

24 John Craft April 1, 2014 at 7:36 am

Also check out this nice recipes

25 Rebekah @ Making Miracles April 1, 2014 at 7:56 am

Mmmm those look so fantastic!! We will definitely have to give those a try – thanks for sharing!

26 Anna (Hidden Ponies) April 1, 2014 at 8:16 am

These look delicious, and thanks for including the non-paleo note too!

27 amy April 1, 2014 at 9:09 am

No problem, Anna!

28 Jessica @ A Kitchen Addiction April 1, 2014 at 11:17 am

This sounds great! Love the zucchini noodles!

29 sarah k @ the pajama chef April 1, 2014 at 3:22 pm

what a unique meatball recipe! i’ll have to try this later in the year when zucchini are abundant :)

30 Karen @ Karen's Kitchen Stories April 1, 2014 at 11:07 pm

Those meatballs look so delicious, and your zucchini “pasta” is beautiful!!!

31 kirstin April 1, 2014 at 11:46 pm

Yummy! I love using zucchini for noodles

32 Couscous & Consciousness April 2, 2014 at 3:21 am

Chicken-zucchini meatballs sound fabulous, and I love that you also served them on top of zucchini “noodles”.

33 Georgia @ The Comfort of Cooking April 2, 2014 at 8:54 am

These chicken-zucchini meatballs look right up my alley for an easy, healthy weeknight meal! Great recipe, Amy!

34 danielle April 2, 2014 at 9:58 am

I love a good meatball myself. And I really like how you paired this with the zucchini “pasta”.

35 Jed Gray (sportsglutton) April 3, 2014 at 6:28 am

Never gone the zucchini route in the meatballs, but it sounds worth a try!

36 Kumar's Kitchen April 5, 2014 at 8:52 pm

wow…these meatballs look so perfectly succulent and tender…and the saucy coat over them…we got hooked,thanks for sharing this recipe :-)

37 natalie@thesweetslife April 6, 2014 at 8:39 pm

totally going to try these with ground turkey sometime!

38 Beth April 7, 2014 at 5:17 am

What a delicious way to serve ground chicken! I love the idea of using breadcrumbs in this recipe.

39 Amy (Savory Moments) April 7, 2014 at 5:40 pm

What a great lightened-up version of a classic dish! I love that you used zucchini pasta too — great idea!

40 Stephanie April 13, 2014 at 12:18 pm

This looks fantastic. I will need to make this this summer when I know I will have too much zucchini

41 kelly April 17, 2014 at 4:15 am

This looks fabulous Amy! I love that you used almond and coconut flour in here and they look wonderful with the zucchini noodles too :)

42 April 19, 2014 at 12:35 am

This piece of writing offers clear idea designed for the new people of blogging, that genuinely how to do running a blog.

43 Jess May 5, 2014 at 10:42 am

These meatballs look delicious- loving all the flavours!

44 June 8, 2014 at 1:56 am

Wow that was strange. I just wrote an very long comment but after
I clicked submit my comment didn’t show up. Grrrr…
well I’m not writing all that over again. Anyhow, just wanted
to say fantastic blog!

{ 1 trackback }

leave a comment

Previous post:

Next post: