If homestyle chicken soup and chicken pot pie had a baby, it would be this Creamy Chicken Meatball Soup. Mini chicken meatballs and tender veggies get simmered in a creamy broth loaded with your favorite savory herbs and spices. Is it crazy…or just crazy comforting? Works on colds, break-ups, tantrums, and busy days.
Be forewarned – you can absolutely bust out this chicken meatball soup recipe anytime, but it honestly tastes better when you need a little extra lovin’.
I know, I know… who am I to besmirch your mom’s recipe or the red label? But hear me out, because this stuff has magical healing powers. Honestly, most soup recipes have magical healing powers, but this one’s got that cozy, creamy, nostalgia-laden extra-special “thing” that only a great chicken soup provide.
First off, it’s creamy. Like another family favorite, Swedish meatball soup, it’s not viscous, condensed soup “creamy.” (That’s not really creamy. That’s – I hate to break it to you – pretty much jello. It’s meat jello. It’s practically aspic.) This ground chicken meatball soup is literally creamy from cream.
Now, in a nod to another slightly viscous favorite we can get behind, it’s also got peas, which will totally transport you to a pot pie place when they marry with the carrots in the mirepoix and the broth thickens. It’s unexpected and delightful and you can thank me later.
But there’s something better!
Easier and Faster Homemade Chicken Soup
The trick? I’ll give you a hint – it ain’t rotisserie chicken.
While I’m a huge fan of homemade chicken soup from scratch, time and temperaments don’t always permit such indulgences…
*drum roll please*
Mini. Chicken. Meatballs.
“Um… Shut. Up. Danielle. I haven’t had tiny baby mini meatballs since I was a kid and they came in a can of SpaghettiOs.”
Yeah. And remember how much you loved that, champ? So here you go. I got you some, only healthier. You’re welcome.
I can’t tell you to make double, triple, or quadruple batches of mini meatballs and freeze them so you can make mini chicken meatball soup on demand, but I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention it.
For a condensed post, click through to view the web story for this chicken meatball soup!
How to Make Chicken Meatball Soup
Need chicken soup for your soul, stat? Instead of whole chicken pieces, mini chicken meatballs put this creamy Chicken Meatball Soup in comfort food territory in way less time. A few tasty surprises like ground chicken, heavy cream, and peas make this chicken meatball soup recipe an instant “new” classic.
- Combine meatball ingredients. Scoop into one-tablespoon portions, form into meatballs, and set aside on a baking sheet or large plate.
- In a dutch oven, brown meatballs in a single layer for 1-2 minutes per side, turning a few times to allow browning on all sides. Remove using a slotted spoon and set aside. Brown in batches if needed so you don’t overcrowd the pot.
- Melt butter in the same dutch oven. Add mirepoix (onions, carrot, and celery) and saute, stirring occasionally, until the veggies soften. Add the garlic and cook 1 minute more.
- Sprinkle flour over the vegetables and work in using a rubber spatula. Cook until golden brown, about 2 minutes.
- Deglaze pot with ½ c chicken broth and scrape all browned bits from the bottom.
- Add remaining chicken broth and seasonings. Increase heat to bring to a simmer; reduce to maintain a steady simmer (don’t boil), and cook 15 minutes until thickened.
- Remove the bay leaf and stir in heavy cream. Return the meatballs to the pot and add frozen peas. Simmer 5 minutes, until the meatballs are cooked through and the peas defrost.
- Ladle into bowls, garnish with parsley, and serve immediately.
- Mini Meatballs for the Win. Keep the meatballs small and bite-sized – about 1″ in diameter.
- Save time and skip the browning. You can absolutely just plop these meatballs into the simmering broth. Just be sure they’re cooked through to 165°F – use an instant read thermometer to check the internal temperature.
- Homemade chicken bone broth or stock always takes a soup next level. If you have it, use it!
Serve it With
- A leafy green salad: we’ve got more than a few to choose from, including these with arugula, kale, or spinach
- Can’t go wrong with crusty bread: serve it naked or with an easy, healthy dip to get more veggies in, like white bean green goddess spread or healthy spinach dip
More Healthy, Comforting Soup Recipes
- Creamy Roasted Tomato Soup
- Easy Hamburger Vegetable Soup
- Healthy Potato Onion Soup
- Loaded Cauliflower Soup
- Ground Beef Taco Soup
- Homemade Lemon Chicken Orzo Soup
Did you make this chicken meatball soup? I’d love to know how it turned out! Leave a comment and a rating below.
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Creamy Chicken Meatball Soup (1 Hour!)Print Recipe Rate this Recipe Pin Recipe
- 1 lb ground chicken
- ½ c panko bread crumbs
- 1 large egg
- ⅓ c shredded parmesan cheese
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tbsp butter
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 3 medium carrots, peeled and sliced to ½"
- 3 stalks celery, sliced to ½"
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 4 tbsp all purpose flour
- 6 c chicken broth, divided
- 2 tsp Italian seasoning
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- ½ tsp ground pepper
- 1 bay leaf
- ½ c heavy cream
- ⅔ c frozen peas
- chopped parsley, to taste
- Make the meatballs. Combine the ground chicken, breadcrumbs, egg, parmesan cheese, garlic powder, onion powder, and kosher salt in a large bowl; mix gently with your hands until the ingredients are evenly combined, but try not to overmix. Form 1-tablespoon portions into approximately 36 mini meatballs and set aside on a baking sheet.
- Heat a dutch oven over medium high heat. Add the olive oil and heat until it shimmers. Add half the meatballs (or however many will fit in a single layer) and brown 1-2 minutes per side, turning 2-3 times. Remove using a slotted spoon and set aside. Repeat with the remaining meatballs. (Alternatively, you can bake the meatballs separately or simmer them in the broth. See notes.)
- Add the butter and heat until it melts, then foams. Add the onion, carrot, and celery. Saute, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are soft and the onion is translucent, 8-10 minutes. Add the garlic and cook 1 minute more.
- Sprinkle the flour over the vegetables. Work the flour into the vegetables using a rubber spatula and cook until it turns golden brown (to cook off the “flour” flavor), about 2 minutes.
- Pour in ½ c chicken broth to deglaze the pot, stirring and scraping the bottom of the pot with a rubber spatula until all the browned bits have been absorbed.
- Add the remaining chicken broth, plus the italian seasoning, salt, pepper, and bay leaf. Increase the heat to bring liquid to a simmer; reduce to maintain the simmer and cook 15 minutes to thicken the broth and marry the flavors.
- Fish out the bay leaf. Add the heavy cream and stir to combine; return the meatballs to the pot and add the frozen peas. Simmer until the meatballs are cooked through and the peas are defrosted, about 5 minutes.
- Ladle into bowls, garnish with parsley, and serve immediately.
Would love to try this soup but it needs to be dairy free. What can I substitute for heavy cream?
Full fat coconut milk is a great substitution!
You can also skip the parmesan cheese in the meatballs entirely, or replace with an equivalent amount of nutritional yeast for that tangy flavor the parmesan usually adds.
I made this soup after the nor’easter we had on the east coast. I thought it was very, very good and satisfying on such a cold day. The next time I make it I will use less Italian seasoning. Otherwise it was great!
Absolutely delicious! I’ve made it twice! It’s a new favorite. I did omit the Italian seasoning. Tastes like a chicken pot pie with the delicious twist of a delicious chicken meatball.
Absolutely delicious! I wouldn’t change a thing in this recipe. Thank you for such a great addition to my recipe folder.
This was delicious! I halved the Italian seasoning (based on another comment), used ground turkey (all I had on hand), substituted chopped green beans for the peas (also all I had on hand), and I had to use 1% milk instead of the heavy cream (should’ve read the recipe BEFORE I shopped). Will definitely be adding to my recipe book!
I’ve made this recipe twice. It’s very tasty! The second time I added some egg noodles for the last 10 minutes, this further thickened the soup and made it heartier. The meatballs, I’ve made extra, are great in pasta dishes and subs!
Amazing Soup! Absolutely delicious!
I have this simmering away for lunch, and it looks amazing! I had wanted to make chicken and dumpling soup, but then realized I only had ground chicken in the fridge, so I am so happy I found your recipe – what a fun idea to make mini meatballs for a soup. 😊 I’m going to make this again next week for some friends coming over. Thanks so much!!