The Best Fancy Dinner Menu: Stuffed Chicken Breasts with Tomato Pesto

Making an impressive dinner can be quick and simple with our easy stuffed chicken breast technique.

We’ve all been there before – having to make a meal for someone special and really wanting to wow them. Whether you’ve wanted to make a nice dinner for a date, host a fancy dinner party for a friend’s birthday, or impress the in-laws who are coming for a visit, having a great recipe is the key to success.

The good news is that you need look no further than our fancy dinner recipe: Stuffed Chicken Breasts with Tomato Pesto and Roasted Green Beans!


“Probably one of the fanciest meals I’ve ever made! It was excellent!”

— Allison G.


If you’ve never made stuffed chicken breasts before, it can sound intimidating. Yet, it is actually quite easy to make, while giving off the impression of being lavishly elaborate.

With our helpful Prepping Smarts below, we teach you how to quickly stuff and bake your chicken breasts with cheese and tomato pesto and wrap them all up in prosciutto. In fact, you can make the whole recipe in 40 minutes! No wonder it was rated one of our Top 10 Recipes of 2017.


“Absolutely delicious. Keeping this for when I need to impress a guest.”

— Regan R.


Our tomato pesto gets its rich flavor from sun-dried tomatoes, garlic, pecans, arugula, parmesan cheese, and olive oil. And if a chicken stuffed with those delectable flavors wasn’t impressive enough, we throw in roasted green beans with slivered almonds as a savory vegetable side.

There’s nothing that can prepare your unexpectant guest for the decadence of this delicious dinner, so get ready to receive a flood of compliments!


Prepping Smarts

  • Making stuffed chicken breasts is quick and easy when you follow our simple steps. You can even prepare them up to a day ahead of time so cooking dinner the next day will go even faster. Watch our video below to learn how to butterfly, tenderize, and fill a chicken breast in no time!
  • If you don’t have a food processor, no worries! You can easily make a hand-chopped pesto with the help of our how-to video below.
Video

How to Make Prosciutto Wrapped Chicken

Chicken stuffed with cheese and wrapped in prosciutto is an easy-to-make gourmet meal that packs a ton of flavor.

Video

How to Make a Hand-Chopped Pesto

Food processors and blenders are not needed to make a delicious herb pesto.

Equipment Smarts

  • A food processor makes every kitchen more friendly and functional. This kitchen appliance is similar to a blender, but has interchangeable blades and attachments that let you do a variety of tasks like pureeing, chopping, shredding, and grinding. With a handy food processor, you can make pesto in a jiffy.
  • Sheet pans are handy kitchen tools that make roasting veggies super easy. The large space allows veggies to be spread out in a single layer to promote caramelization and less steaming.
  • Use a skillet that is oven-safe to both sear and bake the chicken. That way, you save on dishes that need to be cleaned!

For more kitchen and equipment and tool smarts, visit our Essential Kitchen Cookware and Tools


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Stuffed Chicken Breasts with Tomato Pesto

Prosciutto-wrapped chicken breast stuffed with a homemade sun-dried tomato pesto feels elegant and worthy of guests. Fortunately, it's easier and faster to make than it sounds!

Prep time:15 min

Cook time:25 min

Total time:40 min

Serves: 4

Ingredients

  • Sun-dried tomatoes in oil - 1/2 cup, drained and rinsed
  • Garlic - 1 clove, peeled
  • Pecan halves - 1/4 cup
  • Cheese, parmesan - 2 Tbsp
  • Arugula - 1 oz
  • Oil, olive - 1 1/2 Tbsp
  • Water - 1 Tbsp
  • Cheese, fontina - 2 oz, shredded (sub fresh mozzarella)
  • Green beans - 1 lb, trimmed
  • Chicken breasts, boneless and skinless - 2, butterflied and flattened
  • Italian seasoning - 1 tsp
  • Prosciutto, thinly sliced - 6 slices
  • Oil, cooking - 1 Tbsp + 1 Tbsp
  • Cornstarch - 2 tsp
  • Stock, chicken - 1/2 cup
  • Wine, white - 1/4 cup (sub stock)
  • Lemon juice - 1 tsp
  • Almonds, slivered - 1/4 cup (sub pecans)

Instructions

Prep

  1. Make pesto – Drain and rinse sun-dried tomatoes. Peel garlic. Place into a food processor along with pecans, parmesan, arugula, olive oil, and water. Pulse until thickened. If it’s not ‘saucy’ enough, add more oil or a splash of water. Season to taste with salt and pepper. (Can be made up to 5 days ahead)
  2. Make chicken stuffing – Grate fontina cheese and combine with pesto. (Can be done up to 4 days ahead)
  3. Green beans – Trim beans. (Can be done up to 4 days ahead)
  4. Chicken breasts – Butterfly chicken breasts, by slicing chicken breast in half, making sure you don’t slice all the way through so that the two halves are still connected. Open up chicken breasts, like opening a book. Place parchment paper over breasts and pound with a tenderizer, until breasts are about 1/2” / 1.25cm thick. Sprinkle on Italian seasoning with some salt and pepper and tenderize with a fork. Fill chicken with fontina cheese and pesto mixture. Fold chicken breasts closed and wrap each stuffed chicken breast with 3 slices of prosciutto. Watch this video to see how it’s done. (Can be done 1 day ahead)

Make

  1. Heat oven to 375F / 191C.
  2. Toss green beans with first part of cooking oil and season with some salt and pepper. Spread on a sheet pan and roast, shaking pan halfway through cooking, until beans are tender, 20 to 25 minutes.
  3. While green beans roast, heat an oven-safe skillet over medium-high heat. Add second part of cooking oil and then prosciutto-wrapped chicken breasts to heated oil. Sear on each side for 2-1/2 minutes and then transfer to the oven, cooking for another 8 to 15 minutes, until chicken reaches 165F / 74C.
  4. Stir cornstarch into stock.
  5. When chicken is done, remove from pan to rest. Place skillet over medium heat and pour in white wine, scraping up any bits remaining in the pan. Next add stock and simmer for 2 to 3 minutes, until sauce is thick and creamy.
  6. Toss green beans with lemon juice and almonds.
  7. Slice chicken breasts and serve with sauce on top. Enjoy with green beans on the side.

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Stuffed Chicken Breasts with Tomato Pesto Recipe | Cook SmartsStuffed Chicken Breasts with Tomato Pesto Recipe | Cook Smarts

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