Are you ready for some footballllllll?!?
I know I am! 😀 It’s going to be a tough year for my Niners, but you gotta keep the faith, right?
Football is usually a sign that Fall is coming…leaves starting to change colors, crisp cool air, scarves and boots! Football season also means game-day snacks! More specifically, finger foods. Which is what I have for you today in the form of buffalo chicken bites!
I initially found the recipe from Pinterest and adapted it to make my own version.
I’m not going to say it’s easier than making buffalo chicken wings, but they’re definitely something different and a lot cleaner to eat. The efforts put into these buffalo chicken bites are well worth it. I promise!
Start off with your shredded chicken. If you have leftover chicken breasts/thighs, this is a great recipe to help you use it up. If you don’t want to cook up chicken just for this recipe, get a rotisserie chicken! That’s exactly what I did for this post. You’ll add your chopped green onions, shredded cheese, panko bread crumbs, salt and pepper.
Set the chicken aside and get your “dressing” together. Combine the cream cheese, lemon juice, hot sauce in a small bowl. The spice level will depend on the amount of hot sauce you put in. If you have a more mild taste preference, naturally you won’t add as much.
Once the dressing is mixed, add about half to your chicken mixture and see how the texture is. I usually end up using all of it, you want the chicken mixture to be able to hold it’s shape. If your mixture tends to feel a little mushy and you don’t have anymore shredded chicken, you can add a little more shredded cheese and/or panko. Just be sure to add small amounts at a time. Now if the opposite has happened and it’s too dry and you don’t happen to have any more cream cheese, you can add more hot sauce, in a pinch I’ve also used mayo or greek yogurt. Again, just add a little at a time to get to the right texture.
I’ll scoop out heaping tablespoon sized balls until the mixture is all used up and then go back and re-roll them tighter.
Then you’re ready to coat!
Mix your panko, Shake n Bake and flour together in one dish, then your eggs and milk in another. You want to make sure you’re all set up before you get going. In the picture below, you’ll notice I’ve set my “coating stations” into four zones. I will work my way clockwise starting at the chicken balls all the way to the baking sheet. Everything on the right, I will only use my right hand and vice versa – everything on the left, I will only use my left hand. This will also help avoid the gloopy mess when dealing with an egg wash and breading!
Notice the non-gloopy hand?
Coat away until they’re all done.
Put those bad boys in the oven and bake for 25-30 minutes. You’ll know they’re done when they’re slightly golden.
I like to dip mine into buffalo ranch dressing because why not? If this is for a party, it would be good to provide different options – maybe regular ranch, buffalo ranch and some nice blue cheese dressing.
Buffalo Chicken Bites
Adapted from Sweet Pea’s Kitchen
Yield: 25 Bites
- 1 ½ -2 cups shredded cooked chicken
- 1/4 to 1/2 cup Frank’s hot sauce (to taste)
- 1/4 cup wing sauce
- 1 package cream cheese, softened
- 1 3/4 cups sharp shredded cheddar cheese
- 1/4 cup chopped green onions
- 1 ½ cup Panko bread crumbs + ¼ cup
- 1 package Shake n Bake coating
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- 4 eggs, lightly beaten
- ¼ cup milk
- Pinch of salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 350˚F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat.
In a large bowl, combine shredded chicken, cheddar cheese, ¼ cup of Panko bread crumbs, green onion and salt & pepper.
In a small bowl, combine cream cheese, hot sauce, wing sauce and lemon juice. Add to chicken mixture.
Scoop out heaping tablespoons and roll tightly (as you would meatballs).
Combine remaining Panko bread crumbs, Shake n Bake and flour in a shallow dish.
In a second shallow dish, beat together eggs and milk.
Dip each chicken ball the egg wash and then the Panko mixture.
Place on the prepared baking sheet and bake for 25-30 minutes.
Serve warm with ranch/buffalo ranch or blue cheese dressing.