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slow cooker tuscan chicken meatballs with gnocchi

Craving a hearty and satisfying meal? You cannot go wrong with slow cooker Tuscan chicken meatballs with Gnocchi. The juicy meatballs with a creamy sauce and the soft-textured Gnocchi are the perfect accompaniment to cozy, relaxed days. The recipe is very simple, so you have no excuse not to relish it!

You can easily make a comforting one-pot pasta meal for the dinner of a weeknight. Complimenting slow cooker Tuscan chicken meatballs with Gnocchi with side dishes like broccolini, garlic bread, and asparagus would make your dinner even better. Are you ready to enjoy this succulent recipe? Keep reading to learn how to whip it up in your kitchen.

Read Also: How to Prepare Delicious Chicken Bones?

Slow Cooker Tuscan Chicken Meatballs With Gnocchi – Tips to Pick the Best Ingredients

Slow Cooker Tuscan Chicken Meatballs With Gnocchi – Tips to Pick the Best Ingredients

Using the right ingredients is key to churning up delicious meals. Follow these ingredient-picking tips.

  • Ground chicken or chicken mince: Alternatively, you can use ground turkey. We recommend using dark meat for the recipe. You can also use pork.
  • Onion and garlic: Yellow, red, ground or white onion is suitable for slow cooker Tuscan chicken. But brown onion will enhance the texture of the recipe.
  • Garlic: You need both garlic powder and garlic cloves for the recipe. Ideally, six cloves of garlic are enough.
  • Sundried tomatoes: Always use one cup of oil-packed and drained sundried potatoes. You also need tomato oil for the recipe.
  • Dried shelf-stable Gnocchi: Avoid using fresh Gnocchi as it tends to overcook.
  • Wine or broth: Use white wine if you drink. If you don’t, use extra broth. Chicken or vegetable broth will work.
  • For cream, you can use thickened cream, double cream, or heavy cream. Avoid using single cream as it will not give you thick sauce. Alternatively, use evaporated milk. Another option is to add some cornstarch to thicken the sauce.
  • Fresh baby spinach leaves: Wash them thoroughly before using. Another alternate option is frozen chopped spinach.
  • A block of parmesan: Avoid using pre-grated parmesan as it interferes with the sauce’s consistency. 

How to Cook Slow Cooker Tuscan Chicken Meatballs With Gnocchi?

How to Cook Slow Cooker Tuscan Chicken Meatballs With Gnocchi

Are you ready to cook this bowl of deliciousness? Follow this recipe process:

  • In a bowl, make a paste of tomatoes, garlic, and onion. You can use a food processor or slice the ingredients using a knife.
  • Now, in a bowl, combine the paste created with ground chicken. Also, add breadcrumbs, parmesan, eggs, and salt and garlic.
  • Ensure that all the ingredients are thoroughly mixed.
  • Oil your hands slightly and mold the mixture into small meatballs.
  • Now, heat the tomato oil in a pan.
  • Add meatballs to it and cook for five minutes.
  • The meatballs should turn brown.
  • Add vegetable broth or wine to the slow cooker and let it simmer for a minute.
  • Add chicken broth and cook on high heat for two hours and low for five hours.
  • Add cream, parmesan, Gnocchi, and sundried tomatoes.
  • Cover the mixture. Cook it in high for 20 minutes.
  • Add the sauce and baby spinach to it.

Substitutions and Variations for the Recipe

You can customize slow cooker Tuscan chicken meatballs with Gnocchi as per your preferences. Here are some ingredients that you can substitute. We’ll also give you suggestions on how to change the flavor or the nutrient content of the recipe.

  • Ground chicken or turkey have similar flavor profiles. If you want the recipe to be richer, substitute them with ground beef or pork.
  • Usually, the recipe uses panko breadcrumbs. But you can substitute them with your choice of breadcrumbs.
  • If you don’t drink alcohol or do not have vegetable broth, use chicken broth.
  • You can substitute readymade Gnocchi with frozen Gnocchi. However, if you are using the latter, ensure to simmer it in the sauce with the lid on. It’s because they can take longer to cook.
  • Turn the recipe spicy. Add diced jalapenos or crushed red pepper flakes to the sauce or the meatballs.
  • If you want the meatballs to be cheesier, stuff them with a small cube of mozzarella.
  • To increase the protein content, use pork or turkey.
  • Turn the sauce creamier by adding a can of crushed tomatoes to it.

Also Read: How Long to Cook Thin Sliced Chicken Breast in Oven?

Expert Tips to Make for a Successful Recipe

Expert Tips to Make for a Successful Recipe

Paying attention to certain things can enhance the flavor of your recipe.

  • If you are using parmesan cheese, always use one that is freshly grated. It will improve the texture of the meal.
  • Don’t overmix the meatball mixture. Just mix them enough to create the balls. Otherwise, you may end up with rigid and dense meatballs. Also, before forming the balls, wet your hands so they do not stick.
  • Let the sauce thicken before adding it to the meatball. The thickened sauce coats the meatballs perfectly.
  • Cook onions and garlic for the meatballs on low heat. It will ensure that the meatballs soften but do not lose their color. To cool them quickly, spread them out in a bowl immediately after they are cooked.
  • It’s essential to allow the meatballs to turn brown. This stops them from falling apart when you coat them with sauce.
  • Sprinkle the freshly grated parmesan evenly over the meat.

How to Store Leftover Tuscan Chicken Meatballs?

How to Store Leftover Tuscan Chicken Meatballs?

Are you left with creamy chicken meatballs? Here’s how to properly store and reheat them.

  • Store the leftover meatballs with Gnocchi in airtight containers in the refrigerator. In the fridge, the meatballs can survive for up to four to five days.
  • If you want to store the meatballs for more than a month, freeze them in freezer-safe bags. Also, freeze the sauce in another bag. In the freezer, both can be stored for up to three months.
  • When you want to consume the meatballs, reheat them in a saucepan over low heat. Add stock or broth to thin out the sauce if you want.

Summing Up

The flavorful herbs along with juicy, velvety sauce make these Tuscan meatballs with Gnocchi the perfect meal to be enjoyed with friends or loved ones. Now you know everything about churning up a delicious plate. So, gather the necessary ingredients, put on your apron, and begin the journey of creating this succulent delicacy!