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We love most things "Buffalo" and these look yummy. Adapted from Guy Fieri. He uses two boneless/skinless chicken thighs and grinds the meat himself. I'll be using store-bought ground chicken and reflected that in the recipe. This needs some time in the fridge to rest so prepare at least 4 - 24 hours ahead. **Prep and Cooking times are estimates and do not include refrigeration time.
- 2 lbs ground chicken, thigh meat
- 3 cups Ritz crackers, crumbled, divided
- 1 tablespoon pepper
- 1 tablespoon paprika
- 1 tablespoon basil, dried
- 1 teaspoon celery salt
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1⁄2 teaspoon white pepper
- 3⁄4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, divided
- 2 cups blue cheese, crumbled, divided
- canola oil (for frying)
- 1 egg
- 1⁄4 lb unsalted butter
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 tablespoon pickled jalapeno pepper, minced
- 1 1⁄2 cups hot sauce (he recommends Crystal)
- 1 celery, head cut into matchsticks
- In a large bowl, combine the chicken, 1 1/2 cups crackers, black pepper, paprika, basil, celery salt, cumin, white pepper, half the cayenne pepper, and 1 cup blue cheese. Mix well. Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours and up to 24 hours.
- Preheat oven to 275 degrees F.
- Set out a cooling rack over a cookie sheet.
- Pour 2 inches of Canola Oil into a large, deep skillet. Over medium-high heat, heat the oil to 350 degrees F.
- Form the chicken mixture into walnut-size balls and set them aside on a plate.
- Beat egg in a shallow bowl and place remaining 1 1/2 cups cracker crumbs in another bowl. Dip each ball in egg then roll in cracker crumbs.
- Add balls to hot oil, in batches if necessary, and fry until golden brown, about 2 minutes. Remove to cooling rack.
- When all the balls are fried, put the baking sheet in the oven and bake for 10 minutes.
- In a small saucepan over low heat, melt butter. Add garlic and jalapenos and cook for 2 minutes. Stir hot sauce and keep warm.
- To serve, drizzle sauce over Buffalo Balls or use sauce as a dip on the side and serve with celery sticks and remaining blue cheese.