Made in the air fryer, these Whole30 Buffalo Chicken Meatballs are juicy and flavorful; Perfect for any party, but easy enough for a weeknight dinner with leftovers for lunch!
buffalo chicken meatballs
As a girl from Buffalo, New York, I will happily inhale Buffalo Chicken anything and be over the moon. It’s in my blood, you guys. There’s no way around it. And I love using my air fryer for most easy meals, so making a batch of Buffalo Chicken Meatballs was a must – esp with the Big Game this weekend. You need these buffalo balls in your life!
Bonus: these healthy Buffalo Chicken Meatballs are also whole30 compliant.
HOW TO MAKE CHICKEN MEATBALLS
Ground chicken is one of the easiest proteins to pick up from the grocery store, but it’s not always the easiest to cook with. That’s mainly because ground chicken can be dry, because it’s low in fat.
Low fat means we need to add some fat back in for flavor, and easy cooking. This will also help avoid dry or bland tasting meatballs when you air fry (or bake).
To make these Buffalo Chicken Meatballs: I use 1/4 cup crushed pork rinds. Yes, pork rinds. Pork rinds have enough fat to help flavor this meatball recipe without drying them out. Plus, they act as an additional binder (alongside one whisked egg), they’re dairy-free, and also whole30 compliant.
Similar recipes call for almond meal, and that will also work as a binder for these meatballs, but personally I feel as though they dry out this lean meat.
Alternatively, you can use 1/4 cup of grated Parmesan cheese, if you are not on a whole30, and can enjoy cheese. I’ve used Parmesan cheese plenty of times to make this meatball recipe and they are always just as delicious as when I mix in crushed pork rinds!
I’m so excited to share that I’m working with Dandy Fresh Fruits and Vegetables this year! Thanks for supporting this site and the brands that support it too. It means so much to me, friends.
And hi, do you know how much I love celery? Like a lot. And I’m not just saying that. Again, remember I am a Buffalo Girl, and celery on the side of Buffalo Chicken anything is a requirement. There are no substitutions.
Which is why I like to add 1/4 cup of finely minced celery into these meatballs – with shallots.
HOW TO MAKE MEATBALLS IN THE OVEN
If you don’t have an air fryer, you can still enjoy a batch of Buffalo Chicken Meatballs! You will still follow the ingredients and instructions below, but instead you will bake at 400 F degrees for 20-minutes. You can follow the instructions from this recipe if you need a reference.
These Air Fryer Buffalo Chicken Meatballs are perfect for the weekend. If you’re making them to bring to a potluck, you can keep warm in a slow-cooker for easy transport. Or any deep dish like a casserole dish and reheat on 350 for 5-7 minutes.
I love to make a batch of my dairy-free ranch dip for this meatball recipe.
other air fryer recipes you’ll love
- buffalo chicken tenders (whole30/low carb)
- whole30 teriyaki chicken wings
- gyro meatballs (whole30/keto)
- air fryer chicken parmesan
air fryer buffalo chicken meatballs
- 1 lb ground chicken
- 1/4 cup crushed pork rinds (can also sub in 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese or almond meal) - do not use Parmesan cheese if whole30 or dairy-free
- 1 large egg, whisked
- 1/3 cup celery, finely minced - about 2 ribs
- 1/3 cup shallot, finely minced - 1 small shallot
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- cooking spray - make sure soy-free if on a whole30
- 1/3 cup hot sauce - Frank's RedHot is my preferred
- 1 tablespoon white vinegar
- diced scallions (green onions), for garnish - optional
- ranch or blue cheese dressing - optional
- In a large bowl, combine the ground chicken with pork rinds, egg, minced celery, shallot, garlic, salt and pepper.
- Gently fold until combined. Do not overmix. Chicken mixture will be sticky, so I recommend lightly wetting your hands with water or coating with olive oil. If mixture gets too sticky, you can refrigerate for 10 minutes and continue to roll.
- Form mixture into approx 1-inch balls.
- Spray air fryer basket with nonstick cooking spray. Cook 7-9 minutes at 350F. Using tongs, flip and cook 2-3 more minutes. Make sure temperature of chicken is 165F. Repeat if making in batches (depending on basket size).
- In a mixing bowl, combine hot sauce and vinegar. Using tongs or a large spoon, toss cooked chicken meatballs into hot sauce mixture. Garnish with chopped scallions and homemade ranch, if desired. Serve immediately.
- If you don't have an air fryer, you can still enjoy a batch of Buffalo Chicken Meatballs! You will still follow the ingredients and instructions above, but instead you will bake at 400 F degrees for 20-minutes. You can follow the instructions from this recipe if you need a reference.
- recipe should make 20 meatballs. serving size is 4 meatballs/person.
- nutrition info is for meatball recipe using pork rinds.
- nutrition info does not include additional garnishes such as ranch or blue cheese dressing, or chopped green onions.