1. BRUCHETTA STUFFED BALSAMIC CHICKEN
2 tomatoes, diced (about 2 cups)
1/3-cup packed fresh basil ribbons
1 cup shredded part skim mozzarella cheese, divided
6 (4-ounces each) skinless, boneless chicken breasts
salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/4-cup balsamic vinegar
1/3-cup low sodium, fat free chicken broth
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon Italian Seasoning
Preheat oven to 350F.
In a mixing bowl, combine tomatoes, 1/2 cup cheese and basil; stir just until combined and set aside.
Pound each chicken breast to 1/4-inch thickness, being careful not to tear or rip through.
Season chicken with salt and pepper.
Spoon previously prepared tomato mixture over each chicken breast. You don't have to use all the stuffing - any leftovers can be spooned over chicken right before baking.
Roll up the chicken breasts, wrapping them tightly, and secure ends with toothpicks.
Heat extra virgin olive oil in a stovetop and oven safe large skillet.
Add prepared chicken breasts to hot oil and cook over medium-high heat for about 6 minutes, or until lightly browned on all sides.
In the meantime, prepare the Balsamic sauce.
In a medium bowl combine balsamic vinegar, chicken broth, garlic, and Italian seasoning; whisk until thoroughly combined.
Remove chicken from heat.
If you have some extra tomato mixture, spoon it over the chicken.
Pour prepared balsamic sauce over chicken.
Transfer to oven and bake for 20 minutes; remove from oven, flip the chicken over, and return to oven for 15 more minutes.
Sprinkle with remaining mozzarella cheese and continue to bake for 5 more minutes.
Remove from heat and let stand for a few minutes.
Serve with pasta, rice, vegetables, or a fresh salad.
2. APPLE GOUDA STUFFED CHICKEN BREAST
2 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts (mine were 10 ounces each - shoot for 4-6 ounces per serving)
1.5 ounces gouda cheese, thinly sliced
1/2 large apple, thinly sliced (I used Honeycrisp - any firm apple will work)
1 teaspoon olive oil for chicken
1 teaspoon fresh thyme, more as desired for garnish
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 fresh ground pepper
For Sweet Potatoes:
2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
Spray a large baking dish or sheet pan with nonstick cooking spray. Split each chicken breast across but not through and open like a book (be careful, you can easily cut yourself doing this!). This is also known as butterflying. On one side of the chicken, lay out 7-8 thin apple slices followed by 4-5 slices of cheese. Sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme. Fold over and drizzle with 1/2 teaspoon olive oil. Sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
Place the chicken breast on sheet pan and top with another sprig of fresh thyme if desired.
In a bowl, mix diced sweet potatoes with olive oil, smoked paprika, 1 teaspoon thyme leaves and sea salt until evenly coated. Arrange sweet potatoes in a single layer around chicken breasts.
Bake for 20 minutes and then stir sweet potatoes.
Continue to bake until the juices run clear from chicken and internal temperature of chicken registers at 165 degrees, about 10 additional minutes. Sweet potatoes should be fork tender.
3. ONE-PAN APRICOT WALNUT AND BRIE STUFFED CHICKEN BREAST WITH ROASTED POTATOES
1 1/2 pounds small red and purple potatoes halved
3-4 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon seasoned salt + 1/2 teaspoon pepper
2 cloves garlic minced or grated
zest of 1 lemon
4 skin on boneless chicken breast
1/2 cup walnuts lightly toasted
1 cup fresh basil
1 clove garlic minced or grated
1 tablespoon olive oil
6 ounces brie cubed
2 ounces cream cheese
1/2 teaspoon salt + pepper
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
3/4 cup apricot preserves
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Add the potatoes to a large sheet pan with sides. Drizzle the potatoes with olive oil. Add the seasoned salt, pepper, garlic and lemon zest. Toss well. Roast for 10 minutes or until you are ready to add the chicken to the pan.
Meanwhile, prepare the chicken. Place walnuts, basil and garlic in food processor and slowly add the olive oil until mixture becomes paste like.
Next add brie, cream cheese and egg to the food processor and pulse until mixed well. Season with salt and pepper.
Gently pull up skin from chicken breasts and spread about 1-2 tablespoons (depending on the size of your chicken) of cheese mixture under skin of each breast .
Remove the potatoes from the oven and slide them around a bit to make room for the chicken. Place the chicken on the pan. In a bowl, combine the apricot preserves, balsamic and 1 tablespoon olive oil. Brush the mixture all over the chicken breasts.
Place the pan back in the oven and roast for 30-40 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through and the potatoes golden. If the potatoes are cooking faster then the chicken, just remove them a bit early to avoid burning. Serve the chicken with a side of potatoes and fresh basil for garnish.
4. BACON WRAPPED JALAPENO POPPER STUFFED CHICKEN
4 (6 ounce) chicken breasts, butterflied or pounded thin
salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons roasted jalapenos (or fresh, or pickled), diced
1/4 cup cream cheese
1/4 cup monterey jack or cheddar cheese, shredded
8 slices bacon
Lay the chicken flat, season the outside with salt and pepper, spread 1/4 of the mixture of the jalapenos and the cheeses on the chicken breasts, roll them up and wrap each in 2 slices of bacon
Grill over indirect medium heat, with the lid down, until the bacon is crispy and the chicken is cooked (160F to 165F), about 20-30 minutes, or bake in a preheated 400F/200C oven on a wire rack on a baking pan until cooked, about 20-30 minutes, turning the oven to broil for the last few minutes to ensure that the bacon is crispy.