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Buffalo Chicken Meatballs with Blue Cheese Sauce

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Move over chicken wings, these Buffalo Chicken Meatballs with Blue Cheese Sauce are a flavorful, mildly spicy appetizer that’s perfect for game day, tailgating or any gathering of friends!

Less messy than their namesake, who doesn’t love a spicy meatball? Even my hubby, who has a tender palate, didn’t complain about the heat as the dipping sauce calmed the intensity.

Buffalo Chicken Meatballs on a small white plate topped with blue cheese sauce

Buffalo Chicken Meatballs with Blue Cheese Sauce

So have you eaten Buffalo chicken wings? They’re deep-fried wings that are bathed in a combination of cayenne pepper hot sauce, butter, vinegar, and a few spices. Typically served with celery sticks and blue cheese dressing, these Buffalo chicken meatballs echo the classic flavors of the wings.

I’ve made Buffalo Chicken Dip numerous times, but have never made nor eaten those famous wings. Served with a fork or toothpicks, these meatballs are less messy to eat and just as tasty!

Buffalo Chicken Meatballs in a white serving bowl

Appetizers for Book Club

I love trying out new recipes on my book club. My friends are always extremely receptive. Unlike my family, they will try anything. We read and discussed a marvelous book about the assassination of President Garfield. When researching him, I found that Garfield’s favorite dish was squirrel.

I had plenty of offers to drop off some roadkill so I could make my “squirrel meatballs.”  Only one skeptical friend thought I actually used squirrel in these meatballs. Nope, ground chicken is more my style! I have a feeling these Buffalo Chicken Meatballs with Blue Cheese Sauce might taste a wee bit better than a squirrel version.

I’ve been in the same book club since 1996 and, if you’re interested, here are the books we have read over the years. As far as the food goes, I tend to go overboard. A number of recipes I’ve made for my book club have also been shared on the blog including:

Buffalo chicken meatballs and berries on a white appetizer plate

How to Make Buffalo Chicken Meatballs

These mini meatballs are flavored with hot sauce and a generous amount of butter, but they are baked not fried if that makes you feel any better.

Roll the meatball mixture into tightly packed 3/4-inch balls before laying them out across a rimmed sheet pan. You’ll get about 40 small meatballs.

Since the wings are served with celery, these meatballs needed a little celery, too. Make sure to mince it well as you don’t want to bite into big pieces of celery.

These cocktail meatballs are served with a lovely blue cheese dressing.. If you are not a fan of blue cheese, Ranch dressing is a nice alternative.

Perfect for football gatherings, book club or any cocktail party, these have a lovely kick but not overly spicy. And the blue cheese is the perfect complement. Next time you’re hosting a party, give these Buffalo Chicken Meatballs with Blue Cheese Sauce a try!

Add to Your Shopping List:

  • Kitchen Staples: Vegetable Oil, Salt, Butter, Eggs
  • Frank’s Red Hot Sauce
  • Ground Chicken
  • Celery
  • Bread Crumbs (you can make your own by processing a couple of slices of fresh bread in a food processor)
  • Sour Cream
  • Blue Cheese
  • Mayonnaise
  • Red Wine Vinegar

This post was originally posted in December 2012. Photos and text were updated in 2019.

Buffalo Chicken Meatballs featured image

Buffalo Chicken Meatballs with Blue Cheese Sauce

Spicy chicken meatballs served with a fabulous blue cheese sauce!

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Yield 40 meatballs



  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 4 tablespoons 1/2 stick unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup Frank’s RedHot Sauce or any other favorite hot sauce
  • 1 pound ground chicken (preferably thigh meat)
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/2 celery stalk (minced)
  • 3/4 cup bread crumbs
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Blue Cheese Sauce:

  • 3/4 cup sour cream
  • 1/3 cup crumbled Blue Cheese
  • 1/3 cup whole milk
  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 teaspoon salt or more to taste
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar


  1. To make the meatballs, preheat the oven to 450°F. Drizzle the vegetable oil into a 9×13-inch baking dish and use your hand to evenly coat the entire surface. Set aside.
  2. Combine the butter and hot sauce in a small saucepan, and cook over low heat, whisking until the butter is melted and fully incorporated. Remove from the heat and allow the mixture to cool for 10 minutes.
  3. Combine the hot sauce mixture, ground chicken, egg, celery, bread crumbs, and salt in a large mixing bowl and mix by hand until thoroughly incorporated.
  4. Roll the mixture into round, 3/4 -inch balls, making sure to pack the meat firmly. Place the balls in the prepared baking dish, being careful to line them up snugly and in even rows vertically and horizontally to form a grid. The meatballs should be touching one another.
  5. Roast for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the meatballs are firm and cooked through. A meat thermometer inserted into the center of a meatball should read 165°F.
  6. Allow the meatballs to cool for 5 minutes in the baking dish before serving. Serve with blue cheese sauce.
  7. To make the blue cheese sauce, place the sour cream, blue cheese, milk, mayonnaise, salt, and vinegar in a medium bowl and whisk thoroughly until completely combined. Taste and adjust the seasoning, if needed.


Adapted from Epicurious and The Meatball Shop Cookbook

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:

3 meatballs

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 246Total Fat: 20gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 11gCholesterol: 81mgSodium: 703mgCarbohydrates: 6gFiber: 0gSugar: 1gProtein: 12g


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56 comments on “Buffalo Chicken Meatballs with Blue Cheese Sauce”

  1. Lovely post, Lizzy! I heard squirrel does taste like chicken indeed, and people in this parts of the country still enjoy it…:) Well, those meatballs do look delicious. And good thing I can enjoy it just by looking: can’r have anymore food for another week, I think… πŸ™‚

  2. Know what?? I’m seriously thinking to have a book club too πŸ˜€ . How many times do you meet??? And for the first time I’m going to cook this uffalo chicken meatballs…have a nice day, xoxoxxo, Flavia

  3. Bet these were a huge hit! I know the dips and patties we eat are, these are perfect for a party we would love this version! Hope you had a great holiday!

  4. I love wings so I know these would be great:@)

  5. Serving “squirrel” meatballs is definitely a great way to get a book club discussion started!

  6. I’ve never been a big fan of nibbling on wings so I love that you’ve captured all the Buffalo flavors into meatballs. Yum!

  7. I love these meatballs dear Lizzy, hope you had a nice and lovely Christmas!

  8. same here, my family likes the staples, my friends like the fringe benefits of me and my cooking blog!!! anne

  9. We’re big buffalo chicken fans here, so bring it!

  10. They look fingerlicking, Lizzy.

  11. Both the meatballs and the blue cheese dressing sound delicious. Your book club is very, very lucky.

  12. You just have to say meatballs and you know I would love these… YUM! πŸ™‚

  13. Lovely snack! Both meatballs and sauce sound great!

  14. Who doesnt love meatballs? Eapecially with these combination and blue cheese dip, YUMMS!! So glad the excessive eating is slowing down, these will be great for a light lunch.

  15. Cant wait to try these. So, if Jim and I move in down the street, can I be in your bookclub too? Hahahahaha!

  16. Liz, these sound amazing! Glad you didn’t go with the squirrel thing. πŸ˜‰
    Your photos are yummy!!

  17. Looks and sounds wonderful, Liz! My boys would be over the moon crazy for these.

  18. I’ve never heard of anyone eating squirrel before…interesting….

    I’m always looking for new things to make with ground chicken….love these and have to give them a try!

  19. oh man, these sound so so good!! these definitely need to be made here πŸ™‚ your book club is so lucky to have you!

  20. These would be so, so perfect for New Years!

  21. Hi Liz, may all the sweet magic of Christmas conspire to gladden your heart & fill every desire. Merry X’mas with love from Shirley’s Luxury Haven! xoxo

  22. Oh my god! Lizzy! These are divine! Perfect New Years apps!

  23. Terrific job with these meatballs. What a good idea for twist on the usual wings and blue cheese! Have a wonderful New Year!

  24. These meatballs sound and look delicious. I am going to make them for New Years. Thanks for sharing.

  25. Mmmmm – these look good!!! Love the idea of meat ball wings!

  26. Oh, yum-me! Great finger food for New Year’s. Definitely not a squirrelly recipe!

  27. My husband just got wind of this recipe and I know what I will be making this weekend!

  28. These sound fabulous, Liz! Pinning and planning on making next week πŸ™‚

  29. These sound fabulous, Liz! Pinning and planning on making next week πŸ™‚

  30. Squirrel meatballs ?! That’s a great conversation starters ! lol They look fantastic and I bet it tastes divine as well πŸ˜€

  31. I’ve been out of the blog loop for a few weeks. Lots of kids and grandkids to love and spend time with. These meatballls look delicious. Bleu cheese is a winner in most anything. Can’t wait to check out all the yummy things you have been making!

  32. These look so delicious…I know they would be a big hit in my house!

  33. Lizzy, these are party perfect! Definitely going to give them a try for my next get together! Hope you had a wonderful Christmas! Wishing you & your family a healthy & happy new year!!

  34. These are wonderful! The mix was a little loose, so I added a little more breadcrumbs and refrigerated the mix prior to baking. Will keep these in the recipe file!!!

  35. These look addicting! I made some cocktail meatballs for NYE, but I made the mistake of using frozen meatballs and while I liked the glaze, the meatballs were terrible. Ugh.

  36. How delicious! This would be the perfect appetizer for playoff season! Thank you so much for sharing! I hope you have a beautiful beginning to 2013. Full of lots of love, good food, and peace!

  37. The Meatball Shop in NYC has these meatballs on their menu and in their cookbook (in fact I think the recipe originally came from them). I’ve eaten them at the restaurant and they are sooooo good. Definitely a great party food that will be on a future football menu in my house πŸ™‚ Happy New Year!

  38. Thank god you have your book club to appreciate your food. These look awesome. I am so glad you did not use squirrel lol but I know o9f other recipe who list it as a more original to the recipe ingredient.

  39. You should give credit to the people who actually created this recipie it’s the meatball shop in New York

    • Thank you for the information…I got the recipe from a friend who cited Epicurious. I’ve adjusted my recipe to give full credit.

  40. Hi Liz!
    I wouldn’t care if these Buffalo Chicken meatballs were fried or baked, they look and sound awesome! However, I must admit, that Blue Cheese Sauce may just be the “icing on the cake!”

    Thanks for sharing, Liz and thank you so much for joining us for Meatball Day!

  41. Yummy! Love both these meatballs and the sauce.

  42. What an awesome idea! WOW My husband is going to love these and so will my boys! Cant wait to try them!

  43. I love Buffalo anything so I have no doubt I would adore these. Wings are not my style, but chicken meatballs? You’ve got my number!

  44. these looks fantatstic Lizzy and Im sure my son would love these, hugs and love!!
    (Im better but still my arm hurt me)

  45. Love to put these on a sub sandwich!

  46. I LOVE all things Buffalo, these meatballs were so good, they were so tender!

  47. My husband really loved this! Such an amazing appetizer!

  48. Such a great dish — loads easier (and a whole lot less messy!) than the traditional wings. And every bit as tasty. Very creative — thanks.

  49. These are so addicting! I love anything that’s buffalo chicken, and that cheese sauce is the perfect addition to them. So GOOD!

  50. I rather have these chicken meatballs than the wings…and what great combination with the cheese sauce…great appetizer! I hope you are having a fabulous week Liz!

  51. I’m not a fan of too spicy food like Buffalo wings, but these meatballs sound and look pleasing to my eye (And ear haha). But honestly I was 100% sold on this blue cheese dressing. Beautiful idea!

  52. What fun! I really like this idea. I love the flavors of buffalo chicken wings, but don’t love dealing with them. This is brilliant!

  53. Same great taste without going through a pile of napkins, thank you!

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