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Ginger Chicken Meatballs

When I get an email from Mark with a subject that reads "for the boys," I know there's a potential recipe coming that I'll need to tweak. The recipes he finds usually have cheese, dairy or flour - all the things he believes makes food taste good... and the reason I started cooking in our house. This one he found on Bon Appetite and, for the most part, passed my "health test." I swapped in a healthier oil, gluten-free Tamari, less scallion, broccolini and 1/2 white meat.

If you use a low sodium Tamari, the recipe will need more salt. The mixture is super soggy and makes forming meatballs near impossible. Go for a smaller ball and take deep breaths when it flattens into more of patty.

I served it over brown rice and doubled the recipe for a family of four. Boys weren't asking for seconds (but my kitchen is no different than most with kids who just tolerate anything I make), but Mark and I really enjoyed. However, I am getting a little suspicious that those emails from Mark really mean "for me."


  • 1 garlic clove, finely grated

  • 1 lb ground chicken – ½ lb white meat, ½ lb dark

  • 1 T gluten-free tamari

  • 2 tsp finely grated ginger

  • 2 scallions, thinly sliced, plus more for serving

  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth, divided

  • 2 T olive oil

  • 1/2 bunch broccolini, leaves removed

  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes

  • Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper


  • Using your hands, mix garlic, chicken, tamari, ginger, 1½ scallion, and ½ cup broth in a medium bowl.

  • Heat oil in a cast-iron pan over medium-high heat.

  • Scoop out one tablespoon mixture and roll into meatball. The mixture will be wet and hard to form. Do the best you can! Drop balls into pan as you go. Meatballs may flatten into little patties.

  • Cook until golden brown, 8–10 minutes. Flipping occasionally. The balls don't need to be cooked through at this point, just brown. Transfer to a plate.

  • Combine broccolini and red pepper flakes in same skillet, season with salt and pepper, and cook over medium-high heat until broccolini is bright green, roughly 5 minutes.

  • Add meatballs and remaining 1½ cups broth. Bring broth to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer until meatballs and broccolini are cooked through, 5–8 minutes. Serve sprinkled with remaining scallions.

TIME: 45 minutes

MAKES: 2-4 servings depending on how big your eaters are

HEARTFUL RECIPE - One of our real food recipes that focuses on veggies, protein, healthy fats and/or healthy carbs and doesn't include gluten, dairy, soy, refined sugar, corn or peanuts.

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