13 Ground Chicken Recipes To Whip Up For Dinner

If you want to stretch your grocery budget, buying ground meat is the way to go. Most recipes with ground meat make enough for several meals, so you can feed a crowd or use it for your meal prep. Ground chicken is high in protein and low in fat and calories compared to ground beef, yet it is just as versatile. If you've had rubbery ground chicken in the past and think it isn't worth buying, good news — with some tricks, it's easy to keep it from toughening up and drying out. Adding fat and moisture, and being careful not to overmix it will give you the best results. 

Ground chicken can be harder to find than beef, turkey, or pork, but you can easily make your own in a food processor. Boneless chicken thighs are best for this purpose because they have a bit of fat that will help moisten the meat, but you can mix breasts and thighs too. Cut the meat into chunks and pulse it carefully to a minced consistency; overmixing will give you an unappetizing paste, so tread lightly. This can be done in large batches and frozen, or made for a specific recipe. 

Ready to use ground chicken to make delicious meals? Read on to find out about all the ways this versatile ingredient can work for your dinner.

1. Ground Chicken Meatloaf Muffins

Meatloaf is a comforting food that is simple to throw together on a busy night and can be made in hundreds of different ways. Our ground chicken meatloaf muffins are leaner than beef or pork alternatives, and they bake in minutes to suit every appetite. Leftovers can be packed for lunch or eaten on the go. These little babies are loaded with Parmesan, onions, and seasoned breadcrumbs, then topped with a sweet glaze, delivering the flavor you crave in one adorable package.

Recipe: Ground Chicken Meatloaf Muffins

2. Lao Larb-Style Chicken Lettuce Wraps

Larb, traditionally made from minced pork or fish brightened with lemongrass, lime, mint, and chilis, is one of the national dishes of Laos but is often mistaken for Thai. Regardless of its pedigree, it's delicious, easy to prepare, and good for you. Our Lao larb-style chicken lettuce wraps are bright and flavorful, though a shopping trip may be necessary for ingredients like lemongrass, palm sugar, fresh herbs, and sticky rice. Once your pantry is stocked, you might constantly crave these spicy, mouthwatering wraps — no judgment.

Recipe: Lao Larb-Style Chicken Lettuce Wraps

3. Buffalo Chicken Burgers

We love wings and burgers, but both can sabotage a healthy diet. Luckily, our Buffalo chicken burger recipe brings the best of both worlds with a lean, flavorful patty. Mixing up a batch of these burgers calls for staples like eggs and breadcrumbs, which are used as binders to keep the texture moist and flavorful. Ranch seasoning and Buffalo sauce bring the zing you expect, while a quick pan fry before baking gives them a golden crust and juicy interior, ensuring they're thoroughly cooked (necessary for chicken).

Recipe: Buffalo Chicken Burgers

4. Chicken Lasagna With Red Sauce

Lasagna doesn't have to require hours in the kitchen — our healthy chicken lasagna with red sauce recipe comes together in minutes and uses only five ingredients. Ground chicken makes it lighter and no ricotta mixture or béchamel sauce is involved. All you need is ground chicken, mozzarella, Parmesan, no-boil lasagna noodles, and marinara, jarred or homemade. After you brown the chicken and layer the ingredients, you'll only have to bake the dish for 20 minutes, making it easy to serve any time you want a hearty meal.

Recipe: Chicken Lasagna With Red Sauce

5. Easy Chicken Egg Roll

Egg rolls might not be the first meal that comes to mind when you're menu planning with ground chicken, but if you've never made them, you might be surprised by their simplicity. If you've made stir-fry before, our easy chicken egg rolls recipe will be a cinch. Full of cabbage, carrots, and onion, they're lightly fried but taste fresh and aren't heavy. For a complete dinner, round them out with a stir-fry or some fried rice. Try these any night you're in the mood for takeout but want a more nutritious option.

Recipe: Easy Chicken Egg Roll

6. Weeknight Mexican Lasagna

One-dish meals are convenient for busy nights, and those that can be made in advance score even higher. Scalable for any number of people, our weeknight Mexican lasagna recipe can be assembled ahead and baked right before you want to eat. Don't be confused by the name "lasagna" — there's no pasta involved. Instead, it's a take on enchiladas that consists of tortillas layered with ground chicken, beans, corn, cheese, and spicy tomato sauce with sour cream. Mexican food fans will love this recipe, so plan enough for leftovers.

Recipe: Weeknight Mexican Lasagna

7. Pan-Seared Mushroom Chicken Burgers

Mushrooms can be grilled and served as vegan burgers, but why not combine them with meat to enhance the flavor? Our pan-seared mushroom chicken burgers are a tasty, light substitute for beef burgers that couldn't be easier to whip up. The recipe uses eggs and breadcrumbs to ensure the meat stays juicy and tender, along with seasonings and diced mushrooms sauteed to dryness. Patience is the key to these patties because the burgers won't hold together if the mushrooms are too wet. Top these with any fixings you love, and voilà!

Recipe: Pan-Seared Mushroom Chicken Burgers

8. Spicy Chicken Potstickers

Our recipe for spicy chicken potstickers delivers more than an appetizer — these hearty morsels combine ground chicken, veggies, and noodles in one bite. Recipe developer Cecilia Ryu uses glass noodles and finely chopped cabbage, carrots, shiitake mushrooms, scallions, and Thai chilis in the filling, making an enormous pile of dumplings. Folding the potstickers is beginner-friendly, and frying and steaming them will awaken your inner chef. The dipping sauce is a step beyond what you'd expect, with miso and brown sugar adding the perfect balance of sweet-umami deliciousness.

Recipe: Spicy Chicken Potstickers

9. Rachael Ray's Chicken Burger

Rachael Ray's recipes are always popular, but creative tweaks can improve even the best. In this case, different seasonings and extra tzatziki sauce elevate Ray's chicken burger recipe. Lemon and fennel enhance the ground chicken, while Parmigiano Reggiano adds a savory mouthfeel. Crushed red pepper lends spice and tzatziki creates a cooling effect — though you can adjust the seasonings for more or less heat as desired. These chicken burgers are lighter than beef; we love them served with baked sweet potato fries and all the classic toppings.

Recipe: Rachael Ray's Chicken Burger

10. Thai Basil Chicken

We love Thai cuisine, and our cravings are satisfied with this Thai basil chicken recipe. Cook some rice while you brown the ground chicken and add the sauce ingredients to the same pan. Be sure to have fish sauce and Thai basil on hand before you start. Thai basil is a purple-stemmed variety that's spicier and more robust than Italian basil, with a licorice-like flavor. You can add a fried egg or a vegetable side to this dish for an easy, hearty Thai dinner.

Recipe: Thai Basil Chicken

11. Chicken Meatballs With Soy Glaze

We love versatile recipes, and these chicken meatballs with soy glaze fit the bill. Whether you want an appetizer or dinner inspiration, meatballs are a crowd-pleaser. The soy glaze is a savory blend of brown sugar, soy sauce, and mirin that will have everyone clamoring for more. It takes 40 minutes to reduce the ingredients to a syrupy glaze, so be patient while it simmers. Pair these marvelous meatballs with stir-fried veggies and rice for a nutritious meal whenever you have a bit of extra time in the kitchen.

Recipe: Chicken Meatballs With Soy Glaze

12. Instant Pot Italian Wedding Soup

There's nothing like soup on a dreary day, and our recipe for Instant Pot Italian wedding soup uses ground chicken rather than the typical ground beef. If you don't have an Instant Pot, it's easily made the old-fashioned way. Eggs, Parmesan, and breadcrumbs keep the meatballs tender, and this soup has plenty of vegetables to fill you up. Of course, there has to be pasta — this recipe uses couscous instead of the more traditional acini de pepe or orzo, which rounds out the texture for a satisfying bite.

Recipe: Instant Pot Italian Wedding Soup

13. 30-Minute Sloppy Joes

Sloppy joes might make you think of school lunches, but they're a comforting and easy dinner to make. Traditionally made with ground beef, our 30-minute sloppy joes taste terrific with ground chicken. Forget the weird canned sauce; it's simple to make your own with ketchup, brown sugar, mustard, Worcestershire, and spices (add cayenne or chili powder for heat). If you remember joes on mushy burger buns, no worries — artisanal rolls hold up to the sauce. A salad turns this into a quick, healthy dinner your family will love.

Recipe: 30-Minute Sloppy Joes