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Broccoli-Cheddar Stuffed Chicken Breasts
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You’re only a few simple ingredients and 25 minutes away from a family favorite recipe for Broccoli-Cheddar Stuffed Chicken Breasts.
When it comes to comfort food, it doesn’t get much simpler or more satisfying than chicken and cheese. I’ve taken it one step further by taking the classic flavors of broccoli-cheddar soup and transforming them into a filling. But this isn’t your average recipe for stuffed chicken breasts, it’s much more of a template.
Grab whatever cheese, herbs, and spices you’ve got and get your taste buds ready for a hearty, flavor-packed meal.
What Can You Stuff Chicken With?
The world is your oyster … er … chicken breast! The options are really endless when it comes to stuffed chicken breasts, but this recipe keeps it easy and cheesy.
A quick mix of broccoli, cheddar, cream cheese and herbs leads to the most flavorful filling. But don’t let the perfect pairing of broccoli and cheddar stop you from using whatever else you’ve got.
Can You Use Different Veggies or Cheese?
Absolutely! This recipe will work great with cauliflower and/or any type of cheese that has a decent melt factor.
Firmer cheeses like Parmesan and gruyere would be welcome additions, but I’d steer clear of anything that’s extra-soft (think Brie or mascarpone) because we want the filling to stay intact.
Can You Use Frozen Broccoli?
Yes … but with a few adjustments. Frozen broccoli contains additional moisture, and our goal is a very compact filling that isn’t too runny. So if you are using frozen broccoli, it’s important to thaw it completely before continuing with the recipe as directed.
I’ve included notes about draining the steamed broccoli on paper towels before chopping it, and this additional (quick!) step will guarantee the perfect consistency for your broccoli-cheddar filling.
How Do You Prevent the Filling from Falling Out While Cooking?
While securing the chicken breasts closed with a toothpick is an option, it’s really not necessary for this recipe. A few helpful tips to keep your filling inside your stuffed chicken breasts include:
- Cut a pocked very deep into each chicken breast (without cutting all the way through)
- Firmly pack the filling into the pockets
- If any filling does spill out during the searing or baking process, simply scoop it back in!
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Broccoli-Cheddar Stuffed Chicken Breasts
- 4 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 3 cups broccoli florets
- 1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
- 2 oz. cream cheese, at room temp
- 1 Tablespoon chopped fresh chives or other fresh herbs
- Garlic powder, cumin or other spices
- 1/4 cup olive oil, divided
Preheat the oven to 400°F.
Place the broccoli in a microwave-safe bowl then add 2 tablespoons water. Cover the bowl (a large plate works best) then microwave the broccoli for 2 minutes. Remove the broccoli from the microwave and drain it very well on paper towels.
Chop the broccoli into small, pea-sized pieces then add it back to the bowl.
To the bowl, add the cheddar cheese, cream cheese, chives, 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Stir until well-combined.
Arrange the chicken breasts on a cutting board, and using a sharp knife, cut a deep pocket lengthwise into each chicken breast without cutting all the way through to the other side.
Divide the broccoli mixture among the chicken breasts, pressing it firmly into each pocket.
Season the outsides of the chicken breasts on both sides with garlic powder, salt, pepper and any other preferred spices.
Divide the olive oil among two ovenproof skillets set over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, add two chicken breasts to each pan. Sear the chicken for 3 minutes on one side then flip it once and sear an additional 2 to 3 minutes.
Transfer the skillets to the oven and continue cooking the chicken breasts until the thickest part of each breast reaches 165°F, 10 to 15 minutes.
Remove the chicken breasts from the oven and serve.
Chicken breasts often come with the chicken tender still attached to the bottom. Remove the tenders and save them for another use before continuing with the recipe.
Frozen broccoli can be substituted for the fresh, however it should be fully thawed/steamed (as directed in the recipe) and then drained well.
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Recipe by Kelly Senyei of Just a Taste. Please do not reprint this recipe without my permission. If you'd like to feature this recipe on your site, please rewrite the method of preparation and link to this post as the original source.
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