One-Pot Chicken Meatballs with Greens

One-Pot Chicken Meatballs With Greens

One-Pot Chicken Meatballs with Greens

A creative twist on traditional skillet meatballs, these flavorful garlic-and-herb-infused delights are served nestled amidst a bed of greens rather than being cooked alongside or atop them. This clever method simplifies the cooking process, particularly convenient for busy weeknight dinners. The meatballs start by browning in the pot, adding both color and flavor.
Then, they are nestled beneath a generous pile of greens. This accomplishes two things: it gently completes the cooking process for the meatballs while allowing the chard and lemon slices to steam and collapse over the top, creating a flavorful draping over these hidden treasures. To serve, simply scoop everything up with a soup ladle, ensuring to spoon the lemony pan sauce generously over the meatballs and greens.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 4


  • ½ cup panko bread crumbs
  • cup full-fat thick yogurt preferably Greek or Icelandic
  • 2 garlic cloves minced or grated
  • 2 scallions thinly sliced (white and light green parts)
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • Salt
  • 1 pound ground chicken
  • ¼ cup olive oil plus more as needed
  • 1 pound rainbow or Swiss chard 1 large or 2 small bunches, with tender stalks sliced and leaves cut into 1-inch ribbons
  • 1 lemon halved, with one half thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin


  • Start by combining bread crumbs, yogurt, garlic, scallions, oregano, crushed red pepper, and 1 teaspoon of salt in a large bowl. Mix well, then gently fold in the chicken until thoroughly incorporated.
  • Prepare for shaping the meatballs by coating your palms with olive oil. Shape the mixture into 14 medium-sized meatballs, approximately 2 inches each. Ensure each meatball is lightly coated with oil by periodically refreshing the oil coating on your hands. Arrange the meatballs on a sheet pan or parchment paper.
  • Heat a 12-inch Dutch oven (or another heavy pot with a tight-fitting lid) over medium heat for about 2 minutes until it's hot. Pour in 2 tablespoons of olive oil, tilting the pot to coat the surface evenly, then add the meatballs. Let them cook until they turn golden halfway up the sides, turning them occasionally until they release easily, and adding extra oil if necessary. This process should take about 7 minutes.
  • In another large bowl, combine the greens, lemon slices, cumin, and the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Season with salt and toss to ensure the leaves are evenly coated, gently scrunching them up if needed.
  • Carefully arrange the prepared greens and lemon slices over the meatballs, covering them completely. Then, reduce the heat to medium, cover the pot, and allow the meatballs to cook through while the greens become tender, approximately 12 to 13 minutes.
  • Using a soup ladle, carefully transfer the meatballs onto the bed of greens, ensuring they are placed browned-side up. Spoon any accumulated juices from the pot over the meatballs and greens. Optionally, cut the remaining lemon into wedges for serving.