Slow Cooker Italian Chicken Meatballs

Tis the season for slow cooker recipes! I have always been a big fan of tossing some fresh and wholesome ingredients in the crock pot and letting it go for a few hours for a super simple meal. I especially love when I get home and my house smells so good and the food tastes delicious without much effort.

Who else is with me?!

So, I plan to share slow cooker recipes or slow cooker versions of recipes from now until spring so we all have endless options for easy meals that taste great. Today’s special: Italian Chicken Meatballs that are swimming in tomato sauce, greens and melty cheese.

The meatballs take just a few minutes to mix and roll and they have chicken (you could also use a mix of turkey, beef and/or pork), garlic, onion, Italian herbs, Dijon (for flavor and moisture) and Parmesan. The marinara can be store-bought, or you can make your own with olive oil, onion, garlic, Italian herbs and crushed tomatoes. And I stir in leafy greens like spinach or kale for a boost of nourishment. Plus, there’s cheese.

These meatballs also make the perfect dish-to-pass for any work or family potlucks, so add them to the list for the next gathering!

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Slow Cooker Italian Chicken Meatballs

  • Author: Julie Andrews
  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 2-3 hrs+
  • Total Time: 44 minute
  • Yield: Serves 8 1x
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Slow Cooker


Super easy semi-homemade slow cooker chicken meatballs.


  • 2 lbs. ground chicken
  • 2 large eggs
  • ⅓ cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 2 Tbsp. freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 ½ Tbsp. dried oregano leaves
  • 1 Tbsp. dried basil leaves
  • 1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
  • 1 tsp. onion powder
  • 1 tsp. kosher or sea salt
  • ½ tsp. ground black pepper
  • ¼ tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 (24 oz.) jars tomato basil marinara
  • 3 cups baby spinach leaves or chopped kale
  • Handful of fresh basil leaves, chiffonade


  1. In a medium bowl, mix together the ground chicken, eggs, breadcrumbs, garlic, Parmesan cheese, oregano, basil, Dijon, onion powder, salt, black pepper and red pepper flakes. Form mixture into 2-inch balls and place in the bowl of a crock pot.
  2. Add the marinara and spinach or kale into the crock pot and gently stir to combine. Cook on high 2-3 hours or low 4-5 hours. Serve with fresh basil.


Cooking Tips: To make the meatballs in the oven, bake on a greased wire rack at 400 degrees for 15-18 minutes. Serve with marinara. Sometimes store-bought marinara can lack flavor, so I suggest amping it up by adding fresh and/or dried herbs.

Serve with: Roasted vegetables.


  • Serving Size: 1/8 of recipe
  • Calories: 311
  • Sugar: 3g
  • Sodium: 544mg
  • Fat: 19g
  • Saturated Fat: 4g
  • Unsaturated Fat: 15g
  • Trans Fat: 0g
  • Carbohydrates: 8g
  • Fiber: 2g
  • Protein: 26g
  • Cholesterol: 134mg

Keywords: slow cooker, crock pot, meatballs, meatball, chicken, marinara