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Red Pepper Chicken Meatballs

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These Red Pepper Chicken Meatballs are a delicious and flavorful twist on traditional meatballs. These juicy and tender meatballs are made with ground chicken, roasted red peppers, herbs, and spices and make a quick and easy weeknight dinner or appetizer. Top with a herby homemade chimichurri sauce for a true flavor sensation!

smoked-chicken-meatballs-with-red-pepper

For this recipe, we will be using the jarred variety of roasted red peppers. Typically, these peppers are available in halves or strips. For these chicken meatballs, plan on 2-3 pieces. However, you can certainly add more or less based on your preferences. Not only do peppers add a bright, beautiful color to this dish, but they add a hint of sweet and smoky flavor. Finley mince before adding it to the meat mixture.

roasted peppers in a jar

Ingredients

  • Ground chicken thigh meat, or ground turkey
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • Roasted red bell peppers, jar variety
  • Breadcrumbs (sub with panko or almond flour)
  • Minced parsley (sub with fresh herbs like oregano, chives, or fresh basil)
  • Olive oil 
  • Minced garlic
  • Onion powder (or 1/2 small white onion, finely chopped)
  • Paprika
  • Salt
  • Black pepper
  • Chimichurri Sauce (scroll to Choripan recipe card)

What wood to use

We recommend using fruit woods like apple or cherry as they tend to work best with poultry. We want a light smokiness and nothing more. The red peppers will also add smoky flavor, so it’s best to keep it light. Also, keep in mind that these meatballs are paired with a herby, savory chimichurri, which adds an extra dimension of flavor.

Recipe tips

  • Use ground dark meat versus ground chicken breast for this recipe.
  • Pair with fruitwood.
  • Prepare the chimichurri while the chicken meatballs are in the smoker for a quick, no-fuss serving.
  • Use a small ice cream scoop (1 1/2-2″) to form the meatballs in half the time.
  • Add a little hot sauce, red pepper flakes, or cayenne pepper to the meat mixture for an added kick.

How to Make Red Pepper Chicken Meatballs

  • Preheat your pellet grill or smoker to 300 degrees F. Use either apple or cherry wood (or wood pellets) for this recipe.
  • Combine ground chicken with egg, minced red peppers, breadcrumbs, parsley, olive oil, garlic, onion powder, paprika, salt, and black pepper in a bowl. Do not overwork the meat mixture.
  • Form into 1 1/2″ balls, and place them onto a jerky rack (or wire rack) set on a large aluminum tray.
chicken-meatballs-with-sauce-on-a-cutting-board

Cooking and serving

  • Place the entire thing into your smoker, close the lid, and cook for 35-40 minutes or until they reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees F.
  • Remove from the smoker, and let them rest for a few minutes. 
  • Place into a serving dish and top with some of the chimichurri sauce. Serve the remaining sauce on the side along with the meatballs.
  • Store leftover meatballs in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Freeze for up to 8 weeks.
smoked meatball close up

Chicken meatball recipe variations

  • Serve with different sauces, including Comeback Sauce, BBQ sauce, or ranch dressing.
  • If you adhere to a low-carb or keto diet, consider swapping out the breadcrumbs for almond flour of pork panko.
  • Serve these delicious red pepper chicken meatballs in sandwiches and wraps, or pair them with french fries for a fun meal.
  • Substitute ground chicken with ground pork, beef, turkey, or plant-based meat substitute. Adjust cooking times for optimal doneness.
  • Add 1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese, goat cheese, or parmesan cheese to ground chicken mixture for added flavor.
  • Don’t own a smoker? No problem! Bake these chicken meatballs in a cast-iron skillet or parchment-lined baking sheet in the oven at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes.

More meatball recipes

red-pepper-chicken-meatballs

Red Pepper Chicken Meatballs

These Red Pepper Chicken Meatballs are a delicious and flavorful twist on traditional meatballs. These juicy and tender meatballs are made with ground chicken, roasted red peppers, herbs, and spices and make a quick and easy weeknight dinner or appetizer. Top with a herby homemade chimichurri sauce for a true flavor sensation!
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: American BBQ
Keyword: chicken meatballs, red pepper
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 268kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 1/4 pounds ground chicken thigh meat
  • 1 egg lightly beaten
  • 2-3 roasted red pepper pieces jar variety, finely minced
  • 1/2 cup breadcrumbs
  • 2-3 tablespoons minced parsley
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • Chimichurri Sauce for serving (you can also used premade)

Instructions

  • Preheat your pellet grill or smoker to 300 degrees F. Use either apple or cherry wood (or wood pellets) for this recipe.
  • Combine ground chicken with egg, minced red peppers, breadcrumbs, parsley, olive oil, garlic, onion powder, paprika, salt, and black pepper. Do not overwork the meat mixture.
  • Form into 1 1/2″ balls, and place them onto a jerky rack (or wire rack) set on a large aluminum tray.
  • Place the entire thing into your smoker, close the lid, and cook for 35-40 minutes or until they reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees F.
  • Remove from the smoker, and let them rest for a few minutes.
  • Place into a serving dish and top with some of the chimichurri sauce. Serve the remaining sauce on the side along with the meatballs.
  • Store leftover meatballs in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Freeze for up to 8 weeks.

Notes

Use ground dark meat versus ground chicken breast for this recipe.
Pair with fruitwood.
Prepare the chimichurri while the chicken meatballs are in the smoker for a quick, no-fuss serving.
Use a small ice cream scoop (1 1/2-2″) to form the meatballs in half the time.
Add a little hot sauce or cayenne pepper to the meat mixture for an added kick.

Nutrition

Calories: 268kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 19g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 109mg | Sodium: 497mg | Potassium: 556mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 230IU | Vitamin C: 9mg | Calcium: 37mg | Iron: 2mg

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