This BBQ chicken meatball recipe is so good you’ll never need another BBQ chicken meatball recipe again. The BBQ sauce is tangy with small pieces of delicious veggies for an added pop of flavor. I love that the sauce is slightly chunky because it adds depth and texture to the recipe. 

BBQ Chicken Meatballs – Healthyish Foods

In fact, this BBQ sauce recipe has been in my family for years and has been passed all the way down to me. Its origin is Western Pennsylvania and while we might not be known for BBQ sauce, this recipe could definitely put us on the map. 

BBQ Chicken Meatballs – Healthyish Foods

I love this recipe because it’s perfect as an appetizer or as a main dinner entree! Serve these chicken meatballs with toothpicks for easy lifting or on a skewer for a fun Summery twist. Enjoy these chicken meatballs with a side my ditalini pasta salad. The cool creamy dressing would taste great with the tangy BBQ sauce! You could also make a side of white or brown rice to keep things simple!

BBQ Chicken Meatballs – Healthyish Foods
BBQ Chicken Meatballs – Healthyish Foods

BBQ Chicken Meatballs

5 from 2 votes
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Crazy Good BBQ Sauce

  • 2 tablespoons butter, salted
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • ¾ cup onion about 1 medium onion , diced small
  • ½ cup celery about 2 stalks , diced small
  • 1 cup green pepper about 1 pepper, diced small
  • 1 cup water
  • ½ cup ketchup
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard powder
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice, fresh squeezed
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon – apple cider vinegar
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon salt , to taste
  • ¼ teaspoon liquid smoke
  • few turns cracked black pepper , to taste

Chicken Meatballs

  • 1 lb. ground chicken
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tablespoons 2% milk
  • ½ cup plain breadcrumbs
  • ½ cup parmesan cheese
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon dried parsley
  • salt and pepper


  • baking tray
  • saucepan


  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  • Line a baking tray with parchment paper and set it aside.

Prepare the BBQ sauce:

  • In a large saucepan, add the butter, onions, celery and garlic. Sweat until the onions and celery begin to brown.
  • Next, you will add everything else including, the green pepper, ketchup, dry mustard, water, tomato paste, apple cider vinegar, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, brown sugar, salt, cracked black pepper and liquid smoke. Simmer over low heat for 30 – 35 minutes.

Prepare the meatballs:

  • In a large mixing bowl combine, the ground chicken, breadcrumbs, egg, milk, parmesan cheese, onion powder, garlic powder, salt, pepper, and dried parsley. Mix until well combined.
  • Roll the chicken mixture into evenly sized meatballs. I was able to get 12 medium sized meatballs from my mixture. Place the meatballs on the prepared baking tray and cook them for 25-30 minutes or until they are fully cooked through.
  • Make sure to turn them halfway so they do not get too brown on one side. Cooking time will depend on the size of your meatballs.
  • Remove the meatballs from the oven and toss them in the BBQ sauce.
    Serve warm and enjoy. You can also freeze the meatballs raw or fully cooked and use them another day.