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Butter Chicken Meatballs

My husband and I love meatballs, and we love butter chicken. Before an appetizer party, we had the brilliant idea to combine these two loves, and the new creation got rave reviews! Want them as a main dish? Just serve with basmati rice. —Shannon Dobos, Calgary, Alberta
  • Total Time
    Prep: 30 min. Cook: 3 hours
  • Makes
    about 3 dozen


  • 1-1/2 pounds ground chicken or turkey
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup soft bread crumbs
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1/2 teaspoon tandoori masala seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 3 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro, divided
  • 1 jar (14.1 ounces) butter chicken sauce


  • Combine the first 7 ingredients plus 2 tablespoons cilantro; mix lightly but thoroughly. With wet hands, shape into 1-in. balls. Place meatballs in a 3-qt. slow cooker coated with cooking spray. Pour butter sauce over meatballs.
  • Cook, covered, on low until meatballs are cooked through, 3-4 hours. Top with remaining cilantro.
  • Freeze option: Omitting remaining cilantro, freeze cooled meatball mixture in freezer containers. To use, partially thaw in refrigerator overnight. Microwave, covered, on high in a microwave-safe dish until heated through, stirring gently and adding a little water if necessary. To serve, sprinkle with remaining cilantro.
Editor’s note: Look for butter chicken sauce in the Indian foods section.
Editor's Note
Look for garam masala in the spice aisle.
To make soft bread crumbs, tear bread into pieces and place in a food processor or blender. Cover and pulse until crumbs form. One slice of bread yields 1/2 to 3/4 cup crumbs.
Nutrition Facts
1 meatball: 40 calories, 2g fat (1g saturated fat), 18mg cholesterol, 87mg sodium, 1g carbohydrate (1g sugars, 0 fiber), 3g protein.

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  • Ronda
    Sep 5, 2019

    Nice change of pace. Very tasty. We plan on trying it again.

  • gina.kapfhamer
    Aug 14, 2017

    No comment left

  • deblu
    Mar 3, 2017

    Although I'm not a big fan of dishes that are heavy on curry flavoring, I thought the flavoring in this dish was perfect! Family of four loved it. I used the Target Butter Chicken sauce (2 jars) and had 2 pounds of ground chicken for the meatballs. I also had to sub coriander for the cilantro at the last minute but will try with cilantro next time. For the garam masala and tandoori masala spices rather than hunt all over I used a website called myspicesage that has reasonable prices (and free samples with an order). I ran out of time in the afternoon and used the slow cooker on High for about 2 1/2 hours and came out great. Next time I might brown or bake the meatballs in advance. There will definitely be a next time!

  • annrms
    Feb 18, 2017

    These meatballs are delicious and very easy to make. I've not had many “Indian” recipes and this one will be on my list of keepers. I did use the dry packet of Butter Chicken mix and added low sodium tomato sauce. Substituted flat leaf parsley for the cilantro. Served it with brown basmati rice the first time and will enjoy the leftovers homemade naan. PS: I also served some of the meatballs with a side of broccoli & cauliflower "rice"...delicious!

  • aug2295
    Feb 5, 2017

    I did have a bit of trouble finding the seasonings - butter chicken sauce was sold at target but i went to a specialty store to get the other mixes. This was easy to put together and the meatballs had a nice texture.

  • sstetzel
    Jan 30, 2017

    Becky6926 as the Editors Note above states, Butter Chicken Sauce will be found with the Indian foods. The Tandoori Marsala will either be with the spices or in the Indian section as well.

  • becky6926
    Jan 30, 2017

    Where do I find Butter Chicken Sauce? I've never heard of it. What about tandoori Marsala Seasoning?