Super Bowl Sunday: Buffalo Chicken Meatballs

Buffalo Chicken Meatballs

I confess, have no real interest in the Super Bowl. In the past I would watch for the commercials, but a few years ago a Canadian broadcaster picked up the rights to air the game here. So in Canada we see Canadian commercials, no Soup Nazi, no Ferris Bueller, just the same stuff we see every day. Thank goodness for youtube!

Despite not being interested in the game itself I do have a system for picking a team, cutest quarterback will win. Today I believe that to be Tom Brady. Please note these are my personal opinions, if you happen to think Eli Manning is the bees knees I won’t argue with you.

The best part of the Super Bowl has to be the food. This year I decided to make something a little different, but not too different. Buffalo Chicken Meatballs, like wings but in ball form. There are advantages to the meatball over the wing. First, there is the messiness factor. Wings are greasy, slippery, and sticky all at the same time. In meatball form the messiness is no longer an issue, you can use a fork or if the meatballs are small enough toothpicks to pick them up like appetizers. Second, wings are strangely expensive. I really have no idea why they cost as much as they do, but ground chicken is a much less expensive option. Either way, you can’t go wrong with butter and hot sauce!

Just one note on the recipe. The original does not say to fry the meatballs, but when I took mine out of the oven they were a very unappetizing colour. I would call it dusty rose. So I fried them after baking. In my instructions below I’ve written to fry before baking, because that’s what every meatball I’ve ever read says. Feel free to fry afterwards.

Buffalo Chicken Meatballs

(adapted from Bon Appetit)

  • 4 tbsp vegetable oil, divided
  • 4 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup sriracha
  • 1 pound ground chicken
  • 1 large egg
  • 3/4 cup bread crumbs
  • 1 celery stalk, minced
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  1. Grease a 9 by 13 inch glass baking dish with 2 tbsp of the vegetable oil, set aside. Preheat the oven to 450 F.
  2. In a medium sauce pan, melt the butter with the sriracha. Set aside to cool.
  3. While the butter is cooling, mix the chicken, breadcrumbs, eggs, celery, salt, pepper, onion and garlic powder together with your hands. Pour in the cooled butter mixture and continue to mix until well combined. Form into 3/4 inch balls.
  4. Pour the remaining oil into a heavy bottomed frying pan over medium heat. Brown the meatballs on all sides, but do not cook through.
  5. Place the meatballs in the prepared baking dish and bake for 15 to 20 minutes until the chicken is cooked through. Serve with BBQ Dipping Sauce.

BBQ Dipping Sauce

  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 1 tbsp sriracha
  • 2 tbsp molasses
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup cider vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • salt and pepper
  1. Pour all the ingredients into a small sauce pan. Simmer for 10-15 minutes, stirring to combine. Let cool before serving.


The Worlds Best (And Easiest) Tomato Sauce

I found this recipe on Smitten Kitchen ealier this year and immediately fell in love. The kind of love I normally reserve for desserts. This sauce is incredibly easy to make, I’d call it a lazy mans sauce, yet somehow tastes like it took hours of sweat and tears to make. There are very few ingredients and very few steps in the recipe. I’ve made it a few times and I’ve made only one small change, the addition of a garlic clove.

I think the key to this recipe is its simplicity. And the butter, butter makes everything better. Because of the very short list of ingredients be sure to use good quality ones. If you can get your hands on San Marzano canned tomatoes I highly recommend them. I find them to be more flavourful and less acidic than some of the less expensive ones.

Worlds Best Tomato Sauce

Adapted from Smitten Kitchen

  • 1 can peeled whole tomatoes
  • 1 small onion, peeled and cut in half
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Put the tomatoes in a sauce pot. Crush the tomatoes (I used my hands, this is a lazy mans sauce after all).
  2. Turn the heat on to medium. Add the butter, onion and garlic to the pot. Simmer stirring occasionally.
  3. After 15- 20 minutes, taste the sauce to see if it needs seasoning (many brands on canned tomatoes are already salted). Season if necessary. If the sauce tastes acidic add 1/2 tsp sugar.
  4. Continue to simmer for another 15 to 20 minutes.