Looking for something to cook on your Traeger Grill to satisfy the lighter cravings in your house? These low fat smoked chicken meatballs with a spicy BBQ glaze are the perfect fix. Each meatball has 10 grams of protein with only 4 grams of carbs and 75 calories. Even better, you can have them prepped and on the grill in about 15 minutes!
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Making Smoked Meatballs in the Traeger Grill
We’re new to the Traeger Grill and the world of smoked meats. So our starting point for recipe testing was seeing which existing recipes from our other blog, Kinda Healthy Recipes, we could successfully smoke. In this case, we used our baked bbq chicken meatballs recipe.
If you’re new to the Traeger or cooking on a pellet smoker, this should be an easy introduction! You’ll find a visual recipe walkthrough below with a few ingredient notes and bonus tips, in case you need them. Below that, there’s a printable recipe card for you to take with you as we divide and conquer smoked meatballs.
Mix breadcrumbs, shredded parmesan, cumin, smoked paprika, garlic powder, and parsley together before adding ground chicken, BBQ sauce, and eggs.
While the recipe calls for 97% lean ground chicken, we’ve made these meatballs with 92% lean ground chicken and even ground turkey without any issues. I’m sure you could even use ground beef if you wanted to.
Mix everything together and form 24 meatballs. Preheat smoker with a grill pan, mesh grill plate, or wire rack.
The Traeger grill grates are a little too wide for meatballs this size. I use a 15″ x 12″cast iron grill topper, but a wire rack or anything with smaller holes than the grill grates will work. Whatever you use, be sure to have it in the Traeger while it preheats. This will prevent sticking and create more browning on the bottoms of the meatballs.
Smoke the meatballs at 300ºF for 30 minutes.
We tested variable temperatures like in the Traeger Italian Meatballs recipe but found it didn’t make much difference in the finished product. So we kept the temperature the same throughout the entire cook to eliminate an extra step. All you’ll need to do is brush on BBQ sauce halfway through an hour at 300ºF.
Brush the meatballs with BBQ sauce and smoke an additional 30 minutes at 300ºF.
We used the same roasted garlic and sriracha BBQ sauce from Trader Joe’s for these meatballs. If you’re using another sauce, you’ll want to aim for something that’s on the thicker side. Or if you have a runnier BBQ sauce like a vinegar-based sauce, you may want to brush the meatballs a few time during the back half of the cook.
Every grill is different (we use a Traeger Pro Series 575) so you may need to slightly adjust the cook times for different models. You’re looking for an internal temperature of at least 165ºF. As for the pellets, we used the same Traeger signature blend we used for our smoked buffalo chicken stuffed peppers. The signature blend is a combo of hickory, maple, and cherry wood.
Top your meatballs with some fresh parsley and dig in! Here are some Traeger side dish ideas for serving with your smoked meatballs:
- Traeger funeral potatoes (I’m betting you could smoke alongside the meatballs and crank the temperature up at the end.)
- smoked deviled eggs
- Traeger roasted broccoli
Or if you’d rather assign side dish duty to your sous chef, here are some indoor side dish ideas:
- Greek yogurt mashed potatoes
- air fryer twice baked potatoes
- sautéed green beans
- healthy mac and cheese with veggies
That should be plenty to get you going. If you have a recipe question we missed, drop a comment at the bottom of the post. We hope you enjoy your Traeger smoked chicken meatballs!
- 2 lbs Ground Chicken (97/3)
- 1/2 C (60g) Breadcrumbs
- 2 oz Shredded Parmesan
- 2 tsp Garlic Powder
- 2 tsp Smoked Paprika
- 1 tsp Cumin
- 2 handfuls Fresh Parsley, minced
- 2 large Eggs
- 3/4 C (216g) BBQ Sauce, divided*
- Place a cast iron grill topper, wire rack, or mesh grill plate inside your smoker while preheating to 300ºF with the lid closed.
- Mix the breadcrumbs, parmesan, spices, and parsley together in a large bowl. Add the ground chicken, eggs, and 1/4 C (72g) of the BBQ sauce to the bowl before mixing everything together.
- Form 24 50-gram meatballs and place them on a stainless steel wire rack or mesh smoking mat (something with smaller grates).
- Smoke the meatballs for 30 minutes before brushing with the remaining 1/2 C of BBQ sauce and smoking an additional 30 minutes or until the meatballs reach an internal temperature of 165ºF.**
*I used Trader Joe's Roasted Garlic and Sriracha BBQ sauce.
**You can let the meatballs cook a bit longer for more caramelization on the exterior. The BBQ sauce glaze should keep the meatballs moist and tender.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 24 Serving Size: 1 Meatball
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 75Total Fat: 2gCarbohydrates: 5gProtein: 10g