If you love cheese AND meatballs, it’s time to celebrate! I created a perfectly healthy and delicious recipe for cheesy Italian Mozzarella-Stuffed Chicken Meatballs. They are so delicious, filling, and unbelievably healthy. They’re made with all-natural ingredients, they pack lots of lean protein and few carbohydrates, and best of all: they’re oozing with cheese!
I love Italian food, having grown up on it. But now that I live a healthy lifestyle, it’s difficult for me to choose an Italian restaurant, knowing how much food I will receive. That’s an important reason why I try to recreate so many Italian recipes and make them healthy. These definitely do the trick! Just wait until you cut one of the meatballs open with your fork and you witness the gooey mozzarella with your own eyes.
These meatballs require a little assembly, but they’re still simple to make. You’ll have to make little imprints with your thumb to fill them with the shredded cheese and then top them with more meat. That’s as hard as it gets (which is not hard at all)!
The most important part to remember while making these is to make sure they’re fully sealed. On my first attempt, some of the meatballs weren’t entirely sealed shut and they ended up oozing before I even took them out of the oven. Be sure to pinch the sides all the way closed and even smooth them out with your fingers afterward to make sure you’re the only one who gets to make the melted cheese roll out of them!
These are so tasty, juicy, savory, and cheesy that if you made them for other people, they wouldn’t be able to tell that it’s a healthy recipe. I highly recommend making these for lunch or dinner sometime soon. Buon appetito!
- 1 lb lean ground chicken
- ¼ cup shredded mozzarella cheese (I used Nature's Promise brand)
- Black pepper
- Crushed red pepper
- Garlic powder
- Basil (fresh or dried)
- Tomato sauce with no added sugar (I used Monte Bene brand)
- Preheat oven to 375ºF (or convection bake at 350ºF).
- Place the ground chicken and the seasonings in a large mixing bowl. Mix well.
- To assemble the meatballs, first start with the bottom. Place 12 round pieces (about 1-2 inches in diameter) of ground chicken on a baking sheet lined with tin foil.
- Press your thumb in the middle of each to make an indent, making sure you don't press all the way through.
- Place some of the cheese in each indent, evenly distributing the cheese throughout each of the meatball bottoms. Try your best to make sure it stays in the indented area.
- Take the remaining chicken and place a little on one meatball. Pick the meatball up and pinch the separated areas (top to bottom) with your fingers to seal the meatballs. Make sure there is no cheese poking out of any sides.
- Shape the meatball in your hands and place back on the tin foil.
- Repeat steps 5 and 6 with the remaining meatballs.
- Bake for about 10 minutes.
- Heat tomato sauce in a small pot.
- Once sauce is hot enough, add meatballs to the pot and stir.
- Place the meatballs and sauce on a plate and enjoy!
- Calories: for 4 meatballs with no sauce: about 200
- With sauce: about 250