Dress up everyday chicken with a light Italian spin
Here’s an easy way to get your Italian cravings met without loading up on carbs-Pesto Mozzarella Chicken. This simple dish is quick, easy and doesn’t require a red sauce. The one thing it does require is high-quality, fresh mozzarella cheese. I like BelGioioso Pre-Sliced Mozzarella (16 oz. ea., 2 pk.)because it’s already sliced. Slicing fresh mozzarella can be cumbersome…
Chicken is a lean protein, and when prepared correctly, can be quite tender and delicious. Our bodies require protein for energy, maintaining homeostasis, metabolism, nerve and brain function and more. Animal proteins provide us with the essential fatty acid Omega-6.
Proteins keep you fuller for a longer period of time. Think about it. If you have a doughnut or bowl of cereal in the morning, say around 7:30 a.m., you’re starving in two hours. These items are based on simple carbohydrates that immediately convert to glucose. However, if you have an egg, turkey bacon, or other protein, you’ll be slightly hungry around 12:00 noon, aka “lunchtime”. The proteins take longer to digest and provide satiety for a longer period of time.
Pesto Mozzarella Chicken
- 2 chicken breasts
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 tablespoon dried Italian seasonings
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 5 oz. fresh mozzarella cheese sliced
- 1/4 cup roasted bell peppers from jar
- 1/3 - 1/4 cup pesto sauce from jar
- salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees
- Slice chicken halfway through, lengthwise; do not cut all the way through
- Season chicken with garlic powder and Italian seasonings
- In a skillet, heat oil and butter
- Place chicken in the skillet and cook it until it reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees
- Using tongs, remove chicken from skillet
- Place pesto, roasted peppers and sliced mozzarella sliced side of the chicken
- Add remaining pesto and cheese to top of chicken; cover with foil and bake until cheese has melted (about 15 minutes)
- Pesto Mozzarella Chicken is perfect for a crowd--cook the chicken and refrigerate. Before guests arrive, stuff the chicken breasts, cover them with pesto and cheese; place foil over the baking dish and bake at 350°for 30 minutes.
- If you like, add sauteed mushrooms and chopped artichokes to the chicken cavity
- Serve with a side of pasta, salad and a glass of Pinot Grigio
After you make this, please let me know what you thought!