Cream Cheese, Artichoke & Pepper Stuffed Chicken Breast

*****First things first, this is likely going to be my last post from Minnesota for a few weeks. As of Monday I will be in sunny Palm Springs, CA for a week and a half vacationing with friends. We take this trip annually and every year the deal is that everyone is to choose a meal to make for dinner. So, we’re going to be doing A LOT of cooking while there and I’m really excited to share the deliciousness with the rest of you! I have hopes of posting while there, at best, some short and sweet stuff. 

My menu items currently consist of Open Face Steak & Havarti Cheese Sandwiches and making all of the Bloody Mary Bar nosh. I am gonna try making some blue cheese stuffed and bacon wrapped dates, cheese curds, stuffed peperoncini’s, meatballs and a few other random things. Some of the other people have already disclosed their menu items and we’re going to likely see some Stuffed Peppers, Breakfast Quiche, Baked Ziti, Fish Taco’s & much more!*****

Now, on to my blog post …

I love to get creative with chicken and one of my favorite things to make is stuffed chicken breasts. You can get really wild with this one and combine a multitude of ingredients to make it really tasty! I’ve tried all sorts of different cheeses … such as Mozzarella, Blue Cheese & Cheddar … and a multitude of vegetables like Mushrooms, Tomatoes or even Spinach.

So last week for lunches, I made …

Cream Cheese, Artichoke & Pepper Stuffed Chicken Breast
I like to marinade my chicken if I have the opportunity. This time around I used some Olive Garden Italian Dressing. I let it sit in the dressing for about an hour before cooking. You can certainly let it marinade longer … because the longer the better! However, I wouldn’t recommend exceeding 24 hours. 🙂 

Before taking my chicken out, I get my veggies ready. I used frozen artichoke hearts and mixed peppers from Trader Joe’s, and then I thawed them by placing them in some water that was brought to a boil for about 5 minutes. And then drained them and let them dry a little bit.

 

Then I mix the dried veggies with the cream cheese. I had on hand some left over Onion & Chive and Garden Vegetable flavored cream cheese. I used about 2/3 cup. You can use more or less, depending on how creamy and cheesy you want it to be.

     

To prepare the chicken for stuffing, you want to cut off all the fat. The more expensive the chicken, the better quality it’s going to be. I highly recommend buying the better of brands when you’re going to be stuffing chicken breasts.

Lay the chicken breast flat on a cutting board, place your hand/palm on top of the chicken breast and using a sharp knife, slice the chicken breast almost in half. Using your fingers or a meat hammer, pound out the flatter portions of the chicken breast. Ultimately the goal is to make it so that you can stuff more in to the chicken breast and doing this makes the pocket you’ll be putting your ingredients into more “roomy”, if you will.

Then scoop about 2 Tablespoons worth of mixture in to your chicken breasts and fold two ends together. You can pinch your ends shut or use something like a toothpick to keep the ends together.

*I like use toothpicks to hold the ends together.

After I stuff all of my chicken breasts, I place them on a baking sheet lined with tin foil about 2-3″ apart from one another. I then season the chicken with a few different things. This time I went with Kosher Salt, Ground Pepper, Spicy Poultry Seasoning & Red Pepper Flakes.

     

I then bake the chicken breasts at 350 degrees for about 40-45 minutes or until the juices are running clear.

*I’m personally a little finicky about chicken and like to cut in to the thickest portion of a chicken breast and see if there’s no pink left. You can also use a meat thermometer.

This a really easy thing to make! And you can add it with all sorts of different sides. I of course needed a carb and then wanted to make sure to throw a veggie in there. So I went with a potato medley and steamed green beans.

       

Here’s the breakdown of ingredients and instructions …

Prep Time: 15-20 Min  Cook Time:  45 Min  Servings: 5-6 (How many ever Chicken Breasts you make)

Cream Cheese, Artichoke & Pepper Stuffed Chicken Breast

Ingredients

5-6                 Chicken Breasts
8-12oz           Marinade (your choice)
2/3 Cup         Frozen Artichoke Hearts
1/2 Cup         Frozen Roasted Peppers
2/3 Cup         Cream Cheese (Flavor of your choice)
Toothpicks
Kosher Salt
Fresh Ground Pepper
Red Pepper Flakes
Poultry Seasoning

Instructions

Start by marinading your chicken breasts. If this is something you chose to do the night before or earlier in the day, then move on to the next step. Otherwise, add your chicken breasts and marinade to a large freezer/ziploc bag and let sit for 15-30 min.

Now, prepare your vegetables. If you’re thawing vegetables, bring a small pot of water to a boil, remove from heat and add the frozen vegetables. Then let them sit for about 5 minutes. If you’re chopping up fresh stuff, set off to the side once finished.

In a bowl, mix together your cream cheese and your vegetables really well.

Pull your chicken breasts out of their marinade and discard the remaining marinade and bag. On a clean cutting board, laying the chicken breast flat. placing your hand on top and using a sharp knife, slice the chicken breast almost all the way in half. Leaving about an inch of uncut meat at the far edge of the chicken breast.

Then spoon approximately 2 Tablespoons of your cream cheese mixture in to the center or bottom half of the chicken breast. Fold the top portion over the filling. Then using your toothpicks (approx 4) “pin” together the edges, placing the toothpicks about 1″ apart from one another. Place the stuffed chicken breast on your foil lined baking sheet.

Once all of your chicken breasts are stuffed and on your cooking sheet, you can season them as you choose. I just sprinkled lightly a bit of kosher salt, fresh ground pepper, poultry seasoning and red pepper flakes.

Bake at 350 degrees for about 40-45 minutes, or until your juices are running clear. Feel free to use a meat thermometer!

Nutrition Information —>  Total Calories: 422  Fat: 14.6g  Protein: 65.8g

________________________________________________________________________________

I hope you enjoy this recipe! I would love to hear from you about this. Whether it’s what you did differently or how it turned out! Post a comment or shoot me an email!

Until next time,

Crista

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Gimme Some Oven

I love food, and I like talking about food.

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I love food, and I like talking about food.

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