Spice up your average meatballs recipe with these chicken enchilada meatballs! The homemade meatballs are covered in perfectly-seasoned breadcrumbs and baked in a delicious cheesy enchilada sauce. Serve them as an appetizer for game day or wrapped in a tortilla!
What’s in Enchilada Meatballs?
It doesn’t take much to make these zesty enchilada meatballs! All you need is an egg, some ground chicken, breadcrumbs, a little onion and garlic, enchilada sauce, and shredded Monterey jack cheese. They make the perfect appetizer or easy weeknight dinner!
- Ground Chicken: Chicken makes for an excellent healthy alternative to beef meatballs without sacrificing any flavor.
- Breadcrumbs: Breadcrumbs give these meatballs a crispy exterior that really enhances the overall taste of the dish. Feel free to use your favorite kind!
- Onion: Diced onion adds a lot of vibrant flavor and texture to get the most delicious chicken meatballs.
- Garlic: You can’t make a tasty meatball dish without garlic! Don’t skip it!
- Salt and Pepper: A little salt and pepper really bring all the great flavors to life.
- Egg: A necessary ingredient to help the breadcrumbs adhere to your meatballs.
- Enchilada Sauce: We used store-bought Enchilada sauce, but you’re welcome to use a homemade Enchilada sauce if you’d like!
- Cheese: Monterey jack cheese is a great melty cheese that pairs super well with this recipe.
Insider Tip: This recipe uses a red enchilada sauce, so keep that in mind when you take your trip to the grocery store (either work!). Green enchilada sauce has a fresher taste, while red enchilada sauce has an earthier taste.
Low Carb Enchilada Meatballs
To make these meatballs low carb, swap the breadcrumbs for ⅓ cup of freshly grated cheese. You could use more Monterey jack cheese or try cheddar or Mexican blend cheese! This will reduce the total carb count to about 5 grams! A bonus is that this will also make the meatballs gluten-free!
That depends on the type of enchilada sauce you use! Red enchilada sauce can be mild or spicy, so check the can carefully and choose whichever spice level you prefer.
Absolutely! These meatballs are great made with 80% lean ground beef or ground turkey!
These meatballs make use of both breadcrumbs and an egg to bind them together. If you find that your meatballs are not sticking together after adding the breadcrumbs and eggs, you may need to add some liquid (I like to use about 2 tablespoons of milk) to help them stick together.
Yes! Egg is an essential binding ingredient in these meatballs. Without it, they will fall apart.
I like to divide the ground chicken mixture into 24 equal-sized meatballs. Each meatball is just about ⅔ of an ounce of meat. I like to use a 1-ounce cookie scoop to do this, but you can use your hands! The meatballs should be about the size of a US quarter.
You sure can! Either type of enchilada sauce works, and both are delicious!
Meatballs can become tough if not enough liquid was used, if the meatball mixture was overworked, or if the meatballs were rolled too tightly. Make sure your meatball mixture is properly wet. It should stick together with little effort. If not, add a bit of liquid. Make sure to fold the meatball mixture together gently so as not to overwork the meat. Finally, gently roll the meatballs into balls. Don’t over-compact them!
How to Store and Reheat Tex Mex Meatballs
Store leftover chicken enchilada meatballs in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Reheat in the microwave in 30-second increments until hot or in a 350°F oven for about 10 minutes.
How to Freeze Mexican Chicken Meatballs
These meatballs can be frozen raw or baked.
Freeze raw chicken enchilada meatballs in a single layer on a lined baking sheet until solid, about 1-2 hours. Transfer to an airtight container or Ziplock bag to store for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before baking according to the instructions.
Freeze fully baked meatballs in an airtight container or Ziplock bag for up to 2 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
What to Serve with Cheesy Enchilada Meatballs
Whether you eat these chicken enchilada meatballs alone or paired with sides as a complete meal, there are many ways for the entire family to enjoy this great recipe.
We recommend topping them on a bed of Cilantro Lime Rice or wrapped in a tortilla. This dish is also delicious served with a refreshing Confetti Corn Salad, black beans, Homemade Refried Beans, or Esquites!
Chicken Enchilada Meatballs Recipe
- 1 pound ground chicken
- ⅓ cup breadcrumbs
- ¼ cup diced onion
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 large egg
- 10 ounces red enchilada sauce (1 can)
- 4 ounces Monterey jack cheese shredded
- Chopped fresh cilantro optional, for garnish
- Preheat oven to 400°F. Spray a 9×13-inch baking pan with nonstick spray.
- Combine the chicken, breadcrumbs, onion, garlic, salt, pepper, and egg in a large bowl. Mix thoroughly.1 pound ground chicken, ⅓ cup breadcrumbs, ¼ cup diced onion, 2 cloves garlic, ½ teaspoon kosher salt, ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper, 1 large egg
- Portion the ground chicken mixture into 24 meatballs with a cookie scoop or your hands. Roll into balls using your hands.
- Bake the meatballs for 20 minutes.
- Remove the meatballs from the oven, top with sauce and cheese, then return to the oven for 5 minutes.10 ounces red enchilada sauce, 4 ounces Monterey jack cheese
- Garnish with chopped cilantro if desired.Chopped fresh cilantro
- Use cold ingredients straight from the refrigerator. This will make the meatballs easier to roll.
- You can use beef or turkey instead of chicken.
- Read your enchilada sauce carefully! Some cans are mild, while others are spicy!
- You can use green enchilada sauce if you prefer.
- To make these meatballs low carb, swap the breadcrumbs for ⅓ cup of freshly grated cheese.
- To make these meatballs gluten-free, follow the low-carb instructions or swap the breadcrumbs for gluten-free breadcrumbs.
- I recommend using freshly-shredded cheese, as it melts better than pre-shredded.
- If you find that your meatballs are not sticking together after adding the breadcrumbs and eggs, you may need to add some liquid (I like to use about 2 tablespoons of milk) to help them stick together.
- Make sure to fold the meatball mixture together gently so as not to overwork the meat.
- Gently roll the meatballs into balls. Don’t over-compact them, or they could turn out tough.
- Chicken meatballs are fully cooked when they reach 165°F internally.
- Try these meatballs served with your favorite hot sauce or a dollop of sour cream!