dinner · entree · one pot

Meatball Chili Mac

Sometimes, you just need a little meatball in your life.

All of the world’s problems can be solved by meatballs. Spaghetti and meatballs. Swedish meatballs. Meatball subs.

It’s the ultimate comfort food and the best thing to turn a bad day into a good one. Whenever I’m feeling down, I’ll turn to something with meatballs.

I make all of my meatballs with ground turkey now, but if you want to use real ground beef, that’s perfectly okay.

I don’t know if you want to use beef right now, though, because of those prices. Woo boy, beef is almost more expensive than Chanel right now.

To make my meatball really sing this week, I turned it into skillet dinner. Chili mac is a classic one-pot meal and was the best vessel to use for my meatballs. If you’ve never had a chili mac with meatballs before, you’re missing out.

This meatball chili mac is truly one of a kind. It’s a breeze to make and tastes wonderful.


Meatball Chili Mac

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print

Classic chili mac with a twist: meatballs.


  • 1 lb. ground turkey
  • 2/3 cup breadcrumbs
  • 2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 TBS. chili powder
  • 2 TBS. milk
  • 1 tsp. red pepper flakes
  • 4 strips bacon, chopped
  • 1 lb. dried elbow macaroni
  • 1 (15 oz) can tomato sauce
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 TBS. Worcestershire sauce
  • Shredded cheese, for topping
  • Directions

    1. In a large bowl, combine turkey, 1 tablespoon chili powder, 1 teaspoon garlic powder, salt, pepper, milk, breadcrumbs, red pepper flakes, and eggs. Mix until well combined, using your hands. Once well mixed, mold until 1″ balls (makes about 20).
    2. Fry bacon in a large skillet until crispy. Transfer cooked bacon to a paper-towel lined plate. In bacon grease, fry meatballs until browned on all sides, about 4-5 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate.
    3. Deglaze pan with Worcestershire sauce. Add tomato sauce, remaining teaspoon garlic powder, remaining tablespoon chili powder, water and beef broth. Stir in macaroni.
    4. Let mixture come to a boil. Place meatballs in skillet and reduce heat. Cover and let simmer for 20-25 minutes or until macaroni is tender.
    5. Serve topped with shredded cheese.

    2 thoughts on “Meatball Chili Mac

      1. It’s not a bad substitute AT ALL! I’ve been using it in place of ground beef for most of my meals now. Like you—except for actual burgers (sometimes. I posted a Greek Turkey burger I made one time that was out of this world).

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