#SundaySupper is celebrating the best meatballs ever with nearly fifty meatball recipes from around the globe. Inspired by a Chinese takeout favorite, get your chopsticks ready for the sweet and savory sauce coating these General Tso’s Chicken Meatballs.
General Tso’s Chicken Meatballs
When I look back on what and how and when I ate when I was in college, I have mixed emotions. I was still fairly picky then, so it was a steady stream of cereal or bagels for breakfast, sandwiches or wraps for lunch along with a sad excuse for a salad for lunch which was basically a little iceburg lettuce with a lot of cheese and neon yellow honey mustard dressing, and pasta or chicken fingers or grilled cheese with french fries or mashed potatoes for dinner with minimal veggies. Each meal was accompanied by several small glasses of juice or soda, and every time I exited the dining hall, I was carrying a frozen yogurt cone or a cookie or three.
Sometimes after all of those heavy meals, we would still have late night cravings for Chinese food or pizza and would head to the student center for some takeout. Once we had apartments with kitchens, we took full advantage of being able to make cookies and brownies and the like, rarely waiting for it to cool before polishing off the pan, and even on occasion mixing up brownie batter without eggs to eat straight up. And let’s not even talk about the strombolis from Stuff Yer Face and the Fat Sandwiches from the Grease Trucks.
Ah, the good old days.
I was over thirty pounds heavier, but seemingly had a lead stomach – nothing bothered me, which was a blessing and a curse. Now I’m in pretty good shape, exercise, eat more and healthier foods, and yet I have a gluten allergy and have to worry about my cholesterol and blood sugar. Onions and garlic are sadly not my friends, and I tend to eat the same things (and drink – smoothies are frequent meals) so that I can actually sit and eat the dinner I prepare for my family. I make the best of things when I travel, but being off my usual routine does sometimes leave me with a stomachache for a few days after I get back home.
However, I do love that I have a passion for flavors and textures and an appreciation of more ingredients and flavors and cuisines. It’s also amazing to enjoy and be able to cook so that I can experiment to create new things and even attempt to recreate things I used to love or have discovered as an adult. And while sometimes I do make indulgent foods, for the most part, I can create them in a healthier way so that I can feel good about eating them as often as I want.
These General Tso’s Chicken Meatballs are a nod to my college Chinese take days. It’s that familiar sweet and savory sauce with just a bit of heat that is sticky so it totally coats the meatballs. As fas as the meatballs go, I used nice, lean ground chicken breast, and even gave you options for making them gluten free or grain free. There is some honey, so I can’t say they are totally low carb, but if you only have a little bit of sauce, it’s actually not a ton of sugar. But they are still totally delicious. The texture of the meatball is actually similar to those fried chicken chunks in General Tso’s chicken, but without being coated in all of that batter and fried. These meatballs disappeared quickly from our dinner table – the boys kept asking for more!
Now you can go classic like your favorite Chinese takeout but still make it more nutritious and lighter by serving these General Tso’s Chicken Meatballs with some steamed broccoli over brown rice…
But since I’m also giving you gluten free and grain free options, maybe you want go with a the veggies option and pile them on top of some simply sauteed zoodles. There’s plenty of extra sauce to pour over the zucchini noodles…
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Then make sure you check all of the marvelous meatball recipes at the bottom of this post!
What were your favorite things to eat in college?
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- 1 lb ground chicken breast
- ¼ cup almond meal or bread crumbs or ground oats
- 1 egg
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1 clove garlic, finely minced or crushed
- 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
- 1½ cups chicken broth
- ¼ cup rice vinegar
- ⅓ cup reduced sodium soy sauce or tamari
- 3 tablespoon honey
- 2 tablespoons tapioca starch or cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons almond or peanut butter
- 2 teaspoons sesame oil
- ½ teaspoon sriracha hot sauce
- Cooked brown rice or zucchini noodles, steamed broccoli, chopped scallions, as desired
- Preheat your oven to 400°F and lightly coat a baking sheet with oil or cooking spray
- Combine the ingredients in a bowl and gently combine with your hands until well mixed.
- Shape the mixture into 1 inch balls and place on the prepared baking sheet.
- Bake for 15-18 minutes, or until firm and cooked through/.
- Add all of the ingredients to a saucepan and whisk to combine.
- Bring to a gentle boil over medium heat and allow to simmer for several minutes until thickened.
- Add the meatballs to the sauce and cook until heather through.
- Serve over cooked rice or zucchini noodles with additional sauce, and garnish with scallions, if desired.
Here’s some of my favorite meatball recipes…
- French Onion Soup au Gratin Stuffed Meatballs
- Grandma’s Polish Meatballs
- Barbecue Meatball Cheesy Sweet Potato Bites
And here’s the rest of the #SundaySupper Best Meatballs Ever…
- Bacon Wrapped Cheesy Meatballs with Maple Balsamic Sauce from The Crumby Cupcake
- Cheesy Stuffed Pepperoni Pizza Meatballs from The Weekend Gourmet
- Crab Cake Mini Meatballs with Tartar Sauce from The Texan New Yorker
- Garlicky Shrimp Meatballs from Cindy’s Recipes and Writings
- Grilled Korean Meatballs from Palatable Pastime
- Saucy Thai Meatballs from Brunch-n-Bites
- Slow Cooker Turkey Appetizer Jelly Meatballs from Noshing With The Nolands
- Stuffed Meatballs from The Freshman Cook
- Tofu Nuggets from NinjaBaker
- Turkey Meatballs in Orange Sauce from Pine Needles In My Salad
- Turkey Meatballs with Spinach and Goat Cheese from Our Good Life
- Russian Meatball Soup from A Kitchen Hoor’s Adventures
Main Dish Meatballs:
- All-Purpose Meatballs from Cosmopolitan Cornbread
- Baked Meatballs with Swiss Chard from And She Cooks
- Bourbon Baked Bean Meatballs from Sew You Think You Can Cook
- Cheesy Italian Meatball Sandwich from La Bella Vita Cucina
- Chicken Parmesan Meatball Casserole from Fantastical Sharing of Recipes
- Deep Dish Skillet Meatball Pizza from From Gate to Plate
- Fightin’ Irish Balls from Monica’s Table
- General Tso’s Chicken Meatballs from Cupcakes & Kale Chips
- Grandma’s Italian Meatball Subs from Family Around The Table
- Hamballs from A Day in the Life on the Farm
- Kefta Mkaouara (Moroccan Meatballs Tagine) from Curious Cuisiniere
- Keftedakia (Greek-style Meatballs) from Tramplingrose
- Kofte-Style Lamb Meatballs in a Tomato-Pepper Sauce from Caroline’s Cooking
- Meatball Subs from That Skinny Chick Can Bake
- Moroccan Lamb Meatballs in Tomato Sauce from MyGourmetConnection
- Orecchiette and Meatball Skillet Dinner from Momma’s Meals
- Persian Lamb Meatballs from Food Lust People Love
- Portuguese Meatballs in Garlicky Wine Sauce from Family Foodie
- Roasted Vegetable Meatballs from Jane’s Adventures in Dinner
- Slow Cooker Meatball Ranch Stroganoff from Seduction in the Kitchen
- Slow Cooker Spanish Meatballs from The Chef Next Door
- Sriracha Sesame Turkey Meatballs from Grumpy’s Honeybunch
- Sun Dried Tomato & Bulgarian Feta Chicken Meatballs over Lemon-Spinach Orzo From Simply Healthy Family
- Swedish Meatballs (Frikadeller) from Feeding Big
- Swedish Meatballs with Zucchini Ribbons from Angels Home Sweet Homestead
- Sweet & Sour Freezer to Slow-Cooker Meatballs from Wholistic Woman
- Tajine-el-Khoukh (Algerian Stuffed Peaches) from Culinary Adventures with Camilla
- Thai Meatball Lettuce Wraps from Hezzi-D’s Books and Cooks
- Thai Spaghetti and Meatballs from Kitchen Gidget
- Thai Red Curry Meatballs with Coconut Curry Sauce from kimchi MOM
- Ultimate Pasta & Meatballs from MealDiva
- Brownie Meatballs with Frosting Spaghetti from Pies and Plots
Plus Buffalo Chicken Meatballs and More Amazing Meatball Recipes from Sunday Supper Movement