Chicken meatballs!


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I have a dilemma.  I have freezer burnt chicken.  Breast and thigh meat that, well, isn’t the best for normal consumption unless you marinate the heck out of it.  And here is the other problem, I HATE wasting food of any kind.  So, I thought about what I could do with it.  Well i have an old fashioned meat grinder that we bought to make home-made sausage from out hunting expeditions.  So why not use that to grind up the chicken? 

Hmmmmm and then I thought about how to make the meatballs stick together.  And here is what I am coming up with:

Chicken:  3 lbs raw varying meat (freezer burnt or not) and thawed out.

Spices:  1 Tbls granulated Garlic, 1 Tbls Onion Powder, 1 tbls Onion or Garlic Salt.  Chopped Onions 1/2 cup, 1/2 tsp cumin powder, 1 cup cheddar cheese, 1/2 cup bread diced, 1 egg.

Either some flour or corn meal in a bowl with some dried dill, chives and parmesan cheese …. this will be explained.

Take thawed chicken and grind into decent consistency into bowl.  Add all ingredients and stir until the consistency is gummy.  Make 1-2 inch balls per your tastes and to make the chicken ball not stick to your hand, take some flour or corn meal on a spoon and sprinkle your ball as you try to make each ball.

Put on a cookie or baking sheet and cook at 350 for no more than an hour (check as every stove is different) and taste.

I will let you all know how it tastes tomorrow.  Wish me luck!


I made them last night.  But here is the problem.. I made them a tad large.  2 inch balls!  I also added Salmon Burger’s as they were pretty freezer burnt and Shrimp and left over hamburger.  It actually turned out pretty darn good and I have balls in the fridge for later.

I made a first batch of just chicken/salmon/shrimp that are very little fat and very good.  A tad fishy, but it actually worked out as there is a lot of flavor. 

The second batch (as I only had a little chicken mix left) with the hamburger, my husband loved.  They had just enough fat in the hamburger to give it a kind of meat loafy taste BUT it turned out pretty well as he loves meatloaf.

I also cooked the ball for 2 hours … as I don’t want anyone to get sick from the fish and chicken.  The shrimp was already cooked.  So… if you try it yourself, just a helpful reminder… the chicken will be very squishy and very wet.  Adding bread is a sure bet and helped with the chicken sticking together!

I made altogether 40 2 inch balls.  32 of them are now in the freezer and will be used for appetizers for Thanksgiving!


10 responses to “Chicken meatballs!

  1. Yes, I’m very interested in how this turns out. I was going to suggest bread crumbs instead of cornmeal or flour, but really, it’s a matter of personal choice. Looking forward to your results and recommendations!

  2. Technically, if you compost less than perfect food, it really isn’t wasted. Just takes longer to get something out of it.

    HHmmmm… you could make bear bait out of it. Are you allowed to do that? Michigan permits deer baiting, and they call it ‘hunting’.

    • Well, composting now is just feeding the bird. We can bait bears with it.. but not worth it really as most of the bears are hibernating. Besides, meat in compost isn’t the best fertilizer.

  3. And doesn’t a protein ruin a compost anyway?

    • No.. Fish is good in Compost as the nitrogen is good for the soil. But meat and chicken (not water fowl) are bad. I don’t put either in .. I have a dog! But I can’t feed the dog 4 lbs of freezer burnt chicken.

  4. This was a great discovery on your part because it isn’t uncommon for stuff to get freezer burnt. As you say, it is a dilemma about what to do with it, because who wants to waste food. I agree meat can’t be composted, I think because of the bacteria, can’t remember for sure.

    • Yeah it is the bacteria in the meat. It makes the compost go rancid and in most cases (unless it is water fowl or fish) it makes the compost just another junk heap. I always put fish bones and waterfowl bones in my compost. You never put meat in your compost but you can put beef and chicken bones… no pig anything. The bones should be put in a fire and charred, but at -10 it can be pretty cold to light a fire.

  5. Great idea! Like you, I try not to let meat get freezer burn, but when it happens whether it’s frozen raw or cooked, I toss it in the crock pot with a bit of smoked turkey (saved from the smoked turkey my mother-in-law sends us every year) and some barbeque-appropriate ingredients and then walk away. It becomes great pulled chicken or turkey in a few hours. 🙂

    • Hey OZ. Yep, I am not one to waste money. It annoys me. My mom loved this and was surprised I pulled it off. But when it comes down to making new meals, I will keep everyone a breast (pub intended) of what I make.

      • Ozarkhomesteader

        I look forward to reading more freezer rescues!

        I’ve been serving Mr. Homesteader variations on bread pudding made from some coffee cake that had been in the freezer, well, who knows how long! He’s been loving it!

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