Spinach and Sun-dried Tomato Stuffed Chicken

We eat a lot of chicken at our house, so I’m always looking for a new way to cook it.  Stuffing chicken breasts is a great way to do something different and it appears fancy, but it is really not that hard.  Added bonus – you can mix up the ingredients with different things you like.  The method is basically the same every time.  This version has sun-dried tomatoes, spinach, shallots, and feta cheese.  So I guess that’s kind of Mediterranean?  Well, whatever it is, it’s delicious!  It’s pretty low fat, too, especially if you use reduced fat feta.

When I stuff chicken, I usually always use spinach, but some other things I’ve experimented with and like are roasted red peppers,  scallions, different cheeses like sharp white cheddar or fontina, ricotta cheese, chutney, herbs like thyme, rosemary, and parsley, prosciutto…  Sometimes, I even wrap them in bacon or prosciutto.  I know, mind blowing!  But, that’s all I can tell you for now.  If I give away all of my stuffed chicken secrets here, I won’t have anything to say in future stuffed chicken posts, and that would be tragic.

I wrote this recipe for two servings, but you could very easily make more.  And okay, I guesstimated on the amounts because of course I didn’t measure.  So use as much as you like!  I’m not the boss of you.

Sun-dried Tomato and Spinach Stuffed Chicken

Ingredients:

  • 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 1-2 T minced shallot
  • 2 T chopped sundried tomatoes, not packed in oil (4-6 tomatoes)
  • A handful of fresh baby spinach, about a cup
  • 1/4 cup feta cheese
  • 1 T extra virgin olive oil

Directions:

Soak 6-8 tooth picks in a shallow bowl of water to use to “pin” the chicken together later.  (Soaking them keeps them from burning in the oven.)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

With a sharp knife, cut horizontally into the long side of each chicken breast and butterfly open like a book – don’t cut all the way through.  Leave chicken on the cutting board and cover with plastic wrap.  Take a heavy bottomed pot and pound the chicken breasts out until they are about ¼ inch thick.  Lightly salt and pepper the chicken and set aside.

On a separate cutting board, finely mince the shallot and chop the sundried tomatoes.  Lay the spinach in a pile and add the feta, shallots, and tomatoes on top.  Run a knife through the whole pile to chop the spinach and mix all of the ingredients like this.

Now you’re ready to stuff the chicken.  Put half of the spinach mixture on each chicken breast.  Roll up each chicken breast, starting at the top and working your way down.  You might have to poke and tuck some of the stuffing back in – that’s ok.  Secure the seam with the soaked toothpicks.  Lightly salt and pepper the outside of the chicken.

Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a nonstick skillet over medium high heat.  When the skillet is hot, lay the chicken breasts seam side down and cook until lightly browned, about 1-2 minutes.  Repeat on the remaining 3 sides of the chicken so it’s browned all the way around.  Put a rack on top of a baking sheet, and put the browned chicken on top of the rack.  Bake for 20-25 minutes, until the inside is no longer pink.

It’s easier than you think!  Give it a try!

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