Chicken (& quinoa) Balls

  • Servings : 16
  • Prep Time : 10m
  • Cook Time : 30m
  • Ready In : 40m

Chicken balls on their own are good, but with added quinoa are even better. You can sneak a whole range of veggies into these balls if you need to, as they will be perfectly disguised under a layer of chicken-y deliciousness. You can make them in advance and cook when you’re ready or cook and freeze. Either way they are a handy little meal to have around.

These can be adapted to be egg, gluten and/or dairy free.

Nutrition Note: Quinoa is high in carbohydrates and has a low GI, providing a nice steady stream of energy.

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  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1/2 leek, finely sliced
  • 400g chicken breast or 300g leftover roast chicken
  • 1 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 1 handful fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 egg* (optional)
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese*
  • 1/2 cup cooked quinoa* (or 1/4 cup breadcrumbs - use gluten free if required)
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil to fry
  • *Note: Cook quinoa according to packet directions as they do vary.
  • *Note: Omit cheese and or egg if required for allergies
  • Tip: If you have a fussy eater you can hide a whole range of vegetables in these meatballs


Step 1

Heat butter in a small frypan over medium. Sauté the leek for a few minutes until soft. Remove from the heat and set aside. -

Step 2

In a food processor, process chicken, dijon and herbs until well minced (you can add any other vegetables here). -

Step 3

Combine the chicken, leek, egg and quinoa (or breadcrumbs). Use your hands to shape the chicken mixture into small balls. -

Step 4

Heat a large frypan over medium. Fry the chicken balls for around 5 minutes, turn and repeat until cooked through. Alternatively, preheat the oven to 180°C place balls on tray lined with baking paper, and bake for 30 minutes or until golden and cooked through. -

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Recipe Comments

  1. posted by Kirsten {K&Co} on December 7, 2012

    They look delicious! And so healthy. Definitely going to give these a try 🙂

  2. posted by Corinna on December 11, 2012

    Hi, could you freeze the mixture of these or do you need to cook and then freeze? And is your answer the same for the chicken, bacon and quinoa nuggets and lamb koftas. Just trying to find some recipes to make in advance and have on hand in the freezer. Many thanks

    • posted by Allie on December 12, 2012

      Hi Corinna, yes as long as the meat is fresh it should be fine – to freeze put the uncooked balls/patties on baking tray lined with baking paper, cover with cling wrap and freeze until solid then transfer to a freezer bag. Cook direct from frozen. Try the lamb rissoles too, they are a good one. Ax

  3. posted by Joanna on March 19, 2014

    Made these for dinner tonight. Placed them on the BBQ actually on their tray with the good down. Hubby woofed them down. Little one balked at them. Husband glad to hear the freezer is full of them 😉 I used a combo of onion and spring onion and added a little crushed garlic to it all. Just one little note – Make sure your quinoa and onion or leak has cooled before adding egg to the mix 😉

  4. posted by Lara on June 11, 2014

    I cooked these for dinner tonight my bub wasn’t sure about them, but my partner and I loved them! I’m glad a batch is in the freezer ready to go for another night.
    I realise now I changed this recipe a fair bit! I omitted egg, didn’t have any Dijon so added Tahini (to bind) and I forgot to put the Parmesan in as missed reading this in the method – it all turned out and was delicious… Thanks!

  5. posted by Sarah on September 30, 2014

    If i defrosted the chicken from the freezer, would it still be safe to cook all the balls and then freeze once they are cool and just reheat for future meals?

    • posted by Allie on October 7, 2014

      Some people are happy to do this but I personally wouldn’t particularly when cooking for children. Hope that helps, Ax

      • posted by Josie on July 25, 2016

        Hi Allie,
        Saw your comment regarding freezing all and reheating as needed not being advised for children. Can I ask why? I’ve been doing this for all the recipes without realizing it was bad!

  6. posted by Natalie on December 16, 2014

    Hi, these sound yummy. Is it necessary to process the chicken, or would it work with just using chicken mince?

    • posted by Allie on December 16, 2014

      Chicken mince would be fine 🙂

  7. posted by Clare on February 8, 2015

    These went down a treat with both hubby and our almost 2 year old. I added mushroom in with the leek and didn’t both rolling them in to balls – just dropped teaspoons full of mixture into the frypan and made then into nuggets.

  8. posted by Georgette on November 6, 2015

    Sounds lovely! If you cook and then freeze, how do you reheat to serve? Thanks!


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