Baked French Onion Meatballs

These easy meatballs have all the best flavors of French Onion Soup and are a snap to prepare. We've lightened up this recipe by using chicken in lieu of ground beef; you can use ground turkey as well. This recipe makes 8 servings.

PREP TIME: 15 minutes
COOK TIME: 45 minutes

1 1/4 pounds ground chicken
3 yellow onions, peeled and sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
8 ounces brown mushrooms, brushed clean and sliced
1 slice white or sourdough bread
1 egg, beaten
2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
3/4 cups dry white wine
1/2 cup chicken stock
1/4 cup half-and-half or heavy cream
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup gruyere cheese, shredded
Salt and pepper, to taste

Preheat your oven to 450 F. Spray a 9" x 13" glass baking dish with cooking spray.

Add 1 slice white or sourdough bread to a small bowl and pour half-and-half or cream on top. Squish bread and liquid together with your (clean) hands and let stand a few minutes so the bread absorbs all of the liquid.

Add chicken, bread mixture, egg, garlic, Italian seasoning and a pinch of salt and pepper to a large mixing bowl. Mix gently with your hands; do not overmix or the meatballs will be tough. Roll meat into balls in about 2 tablespoon portions and place in your baking dish. Repeat until all of the meat mixture has been used up. Bake for 10 minutes, until the meatballs are crisped up on the outside but still rare on the inside. Remove from heat and set aside.

While the meatballs are cooking, heat butter and olive oil in a large skillet to medium on the stove top. Add onions and stir to coat with fat. Cook for 10 minutes. Add about 1/4 cup of the wine, stir and cook until the onions absorb the wine. Repeat this process until all of the wine is gone and the onions are caramelized; the process should take about 15 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low, add meatballs to the pan and simmer for 10 minutes, until the meatballs are cooked.

Preheat your oven's broiler to low broil. Add meatballs and sauce back into baking dish. Sprinkle with cheese. Broil until cheese is melted, about 3-4 minutes. Remove from oven, let cool for a few minutes and serve.