Chipotle Turkey Meatballs

Continuing my quest to find the perfect holiday appetizer I started asking people what they like to see at their holiday parties. Aside from Holiday sweaters of course. According to the majority of the people I talk to, it just isn’t a holiday cocktail party without meatballs. There were suggestions of sweet n’ sour meatballs, BBQ meatballs,  sausage meatballs, Swedish meatballs. It seemed like just about every corner of the world was covered. But I decided to tackle a Mexican inspired one since it was the one flavor profile that no one mentioned. What can I say, I like a challenge.

It wasn’t until this year that I started using chipotle in every dish that I could. I don’t know what took me so long to embrace this smoky, spicy pepper but now that I have I cannot get enough of it. You don’t need a lot to kick up a dish. In this recipe I only use one chipotle pepper for 1 pound of turkey. The meatballs were a little spicy but nothing that most people couldn’t handle. If you want to add a little more spice feel free to add one more chipotle pepper. If you’re a glutton for punishment then add 3 more. At least maybe the dipping sauce will help cool you off.

Chipotle Turkey Meatballs Recipe

Makes 20 Prep Time: Cook Time:

Chipotle Turkey Meatballs Ingredients:

  • 1 pound ground turkey
  • 1/2 cup plain bread crumbs
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 chipotle pepper in adobo sauce, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon adobo sauce from chipotle pepper can
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • canola oil

Dipping Sauce Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon mayonnaise
  • 1 teaspoon lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon vinegar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons of the adobo sauce from the chipotle peppers
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt



Preheat oven to 350 degrees.


Combine all of the ingredients for the meatballs, except canola oil, in a bowl. Mix well. Roll into about 20 meatballs.


Heat a thin layer of canola oil in a pan over medium heat. Once hot, fry meatballs until browned on all sides. Fry in batches if necessary. Transfer browned meatballs to a baking dish and finish baking in the oven until cooked through. About 10 - 15 minutes.


While the meatballs are cooking combine all of the ingredients for the dipping sauce in a bowl. Mix well.


Once meatballs are cooked through, place toothpicks in the top (if desired) transfer to a serving platter and serve with dipping sauce.



Leave a Comment

  • Reply
    Jenn's Food Journey
    December 8, 2010 at 5:09 pm

    I’m with you… I put chipotles in whatever I can!! lol These look and sound fantastic!

  • Reply
    December 8, 2010 at 11:38 am

    A perfect party snack.

  • Reply
    Fun and Fearless in Beantown
    December 8, 2010 at 8:13 am

    I’ve made taco turkey meatballs and a lovely sriracha mayo dipping sauce with it. Love the addition of spice!

  • Reply
    December 8, 2010 at 8:09 am

    Excellent idea! We are fans of the mightly chipotle here as well. I won’t make meatballs with turkey for a while, though, I’m just to turkeyed out after Thanksgiving. I like the Mexican meatball idea though.