One of my favorite magazines for quick week-night meal inspiration is Martha Stewart’s Everyday Food. Organic chicken breasts are a regular in the rotation for me, but I’m always looking for a way to spice things up. This recipe does just that.
The original recipe fills the chicken with goat cheese and arugula (a type of lettuce that’s “peppery”). I’ve made it substituting spinach for the arugula and I imagine basil would be nice too. I’ve also swapped the goat cheese for feta.
Depending on the size of the chicken breasts I do one of two things: butterfly them (all the way through) or pound them thin (I put 1 breast in a heavy duty, unsealed zip-loc bag and pound it with a rolling pin.
Even with the cheese, the recipe is relatively low in fat. Goat cheese and other soft cheeses (like feta) are lower in fat than most (80 cals and 6g fat per 1 oz serving).
Chicken Roll-Ups with Goat Cheese and Spinach
adapted from marthastewart.com
Makes 4 servings
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (around 6oz each)
Salt and pepper
4 ounces baby spinach/arugula/basil (or regular spinach with stems trimmed)
3 ounces soft goat cheese, broken into small pieces
2 teaspoons olive oil
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Pound each chicken breast to about a ¼-inch thickness and pat dry. Season chicken with salt and pepper.
- On a clean work surface, lay chicken flat (smooth sides down). Fill and roll: Layer each breast with spinach and then crumble goat cheese in the center. Starting with the narrow end, roll up chicken tightly and seal with a toothpick (or 2) or tie with kitchen twine.
- In a large nonstick ovenproof skillet*, heat oil over medium-high heat. Swirl to coat bottom of pan. Cook, seam side down, until golden brown, 1 to 2 minutes. Turn chicken and cook for another 1 to 2 minutes.
- Transfer skillet to oven. Cook until chicken is cooked through, 10 to 12 minutes. Allow the chicken to rest 5 minutes. Remove toothpicks, and slice chicken crosswise before serving, if desired.
* If you don’t have a skillet that can go from the stove-top to the oven (it really depends on whether or not the handle is heat-proof…you can wrap the handle in foil if needed), just transfer the browned chicken to a baking sheet/dish and continue as normal.
Per serving – 222 calories, 10 g fat (4 g saturated), 3 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber, 45 g protein
Blair Buras is a dietitian, dancer, food enthusiast, blogger and healthy recipe developer. She is also the New Orleans Saintsation director, choreographer and nutritionist.