Cheesy Tomato Basil Stuffed Chicken.
Cheesy Tomato Basil Stuffed Chicken.
All in one skillet and done in about thirty minutes. Cool. Cool.
Currently, I am craving the summertime flavors, all while it’s still very much winter time weather here. UGH. Anyone else in the same boat? We’ve had the craziest weather here, going from warmer sunny..ish days, to very extreme winds, to freezing cold snow and ice. Therefore, I’ve decided just to give into my craving, and go with my dreamy warmer weather flavors. I figured you guys wouldn’t mind.
This skillet chicken was actually inspired by a recipe I gave out as part of my bonus recipes for the launch of my cookbook last fall. This version is a little better suited for the spring season, as it uses sun-dried tomatoes that are available year round, verses fresh heirloom tomatoes that are best in the late days of summer. Which I will not lie, I am majorly dreaming of…
Or maybe just a trip to Florida? Or the Bahamas? Currently I am all bundled, and clearly dreaming of topical things.
Can you blame me? It’s been a minute since I felt warmth on my skin.
I need warm sunshine. Craving warm sunshine. GIVE ME WARM SUNSHINE.
I love this recipe for so many reasons, it’s simple, quick cooking, bright, colorful, cheesy, and packed with fresh flavors.
Here is how this cheesy chicken skillet dinner works.
You’ll start off with the chicken, which gets sliced in half and stuffed with basil pesto, sun-dried tomatoes, and fresh mozzarella. Can you say yum or what? I love using both pesto and sun-dried tomatoes as major performers in recipes. They pack in so much flavor without having to add a billion and one other ingredients. Both also happen to be pantry staples.
When it comes to tomatoes I am very, very picky. For the most part I don’t love tomatoes unless they are perfectly ripe. I usually prefer the tiny heirloom cherry tomatoes that you can only find in the late summer months. This is why I almost always turn to sun-dried tomatoes when looking for good tomato flavor. Sun-dried tomatoes are my all time favorite, I swear, they are sweet enough to be candy and can be used in so many ways. I kind of think they are the best. Just saying.
OK. So that’s my tomato rant. Moving on.
Once the chicken is stuffed, simply add it to a skillet, pan roast, add the cherry tomatoes and a little balsamic, and continue cooking until the tomatoes burst and create a light sauce for the chicken. Then just top with fresh basil and DONE.
So quick and simple. So, so good.
Tip: to add extra flavor and a bit of a wow factor to this dish, I suggest adding some prosciutto right on top of the chicken before baking. The prosciutto will crisp up in the oven and is so DELICIOUS. But then I do love crispy prosciutto.
I also love serving this chicken with a side of steamed rice or quinoa, or even some roasted potatoes. Nothing too time consuming or fancy, I like to allow the cheesy tomato basil chicken to be the star of the show.
This would be a great dinner to entertain with seeing as it practically cooks itself and comes out of the oven looking delicious, colorful, and pretty. You guys know I am all about presentation (because lets be real, we eat with our eyes first) and entertaining with food that is naturally beautiful on its own. A simple garnish of fresh basil is all you need with this tomato basil chicken, so this is a major plus in my book.
Also? I know it’s only spring, but looking into the future I see myself making this chicken A LOT come July and August. I know, I know, I am getting way ahead of myself, but I can’t help. I’m excited.
In the meantime, I’m recommending you make this chicken for dinner. Trust me, it’s what is going to get you through until Friday night.
Cheesy Tomato Basil Stuffed Chicken
This chicken is simple, quick cooking, bright, colorful, cheesy, and packed with fresh flavors. Oh, and so delicious!
- 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts
- 1/3 cup basil pesto, homemade or store-bought
- 1/3 cup oil packed sun-dried tomatoes, oil drained and reserved
- 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
- Kosher salt and black pepper
- 1 cup heirloom cherry tomatoes, halved if large
- 2 cloves garlic, smashed
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 1 pinch crushed red pepper flakes
- ¼ cup fresh basil, roughly torn
1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
2. Slice the chicken through the middle horizontally to within a 1/2 inch of the other side. Open the two sides and spread them out like an open book. Spread the pesto evenly on each side and then add the sun-dried tomatoes and cheese. Close the chicken sides like a book over the filling.
3. Place the chicken in a 12 inch skillet. Rub with reserved sun-dried tomato oil and season with kosher salt and pepper. Transfer to the oven and bake for 15 minutes, then add the tomatoes, garlic, balsamic vinegar, and a pinch of crushed red pepper flakes to the skillet. Season the tomatoes with salt. Return to the oven and continue baking for another 10 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through.
4. Remove the chicken from the oven and top with fresh basil. Enjoy!
Also? Doubling the cheese is not a bad idea. Just a suggestion.
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Crispy Oregano Smashed Potatoes with Feta and Lemon.