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Baked Teriyaki Chicken Meatballs

Everyone is looking for healthier recipes right now, including myself. These are healthy and also very good. If you want an Asian flair without the same old meal than try it in these moist meatballs. I wouldn't add the salt it calls for in the meatballs, I did use the low sodium soy and I still think it was salty enough.

For the meatballs:
1/4 cup milk
1/4 cup Panko breadcrumbs
1 1/2 lbs. ground chicken
1 Tablespoon minced garlic
2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
2 Tablespoons minced scallions
2 Tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
1/4 cup crushed pineapple (juices drained, save juices for sauce)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

For the sauce:
1/2 cup low sodium soy sauce
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup pineapple juice
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
1 Tablespoon water

Preheat the oven to 500ºF. Spray a mini-muffin pan or baking dish with cooking spray.

In a small bowl, stir together the milk and Panko breadcrumbs and let sit for 5 minutes.

In a large bowl, combine the ground chicken, garlic, ginger, scallions, soy sauce, crushed pineapple, pepper and soaked breadcrumbs. Use your hands to thoroughly combine the meat mixture and then shape it into balls using 2 to 3 tablespoons of meat per meatball.

Place the shaped meatballs into the prepared pan and bake for 12 to 15 minutes until the meatballs are fully cooked. While the meatballs are baking, prepare the sauce.

Make the sauce:
In a medium saucepan set over medium heat, whisk together the soy sauce, water, pineapple juice, brown sugar, garlic and ginger. Cook, whisking constantly, until the sugar has dissolved fully.

In a small bowl, whisk together the cornstarch with the water to make a slurry. Whisk the slurry into the sauce and simmer until it has thickened to the consistency of syrup, about 5 minutes.

Remove the meatballs from the oven and transfer them into a large bowl. Pour the sauce on top and toss to coat. Serve immediately.

Kelly's Notes:

The meatball mixture will be very wet while you are shaping it into balls, however the added liquid from the milk and crushed pineapple helps guarantee the meatballs will be very moist.

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