Caprese Stuffed Chicken

Do you stuff foods often enough? I know I don’t. This is super easy with perfect flavors. It was a nod towards spring because of the basil. Caprese stuffed chicken would be great grilled. I baked it but plan to replicate when summer comes.

Baking chicken reminded me how thankful I am for a meat thermometer. It isn’t fancy but it helps me ensure these suckers got cooked through. Grab a meat thermometer. You’ll thank me later. They’re about 3-bucks even at the grocery store. Otherwise you really risk overcooking the chicken and ending up with rubber.

Pounding out the chicken and sprinkling with tomato & basil before topping with mozzarella at the end will give the same flavor without having to stuff them. I really only thought about that once they were in the oven. Though, cutting a pocket into the chicken is wayyy easier than butterflying the breast.

One of my trusty sous chefs head pointed to the ground in hopes of snagging anything that drops…
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Ingredients:

2 large chicken breasts
1/4 cup Italian dressing
3 tbs olive oil
2-3 tomatoes, roma or campari
~6 basil leaves
4 slices fresh mozzarella

Directions:

Trim any fat or skin from the chicken breasts. Slice them in half, then cut a pocket into each piece.
Marinate the chicken pieces in Italian dressing, olive oil, salt, and pepper for 2+ hours.
The Three Bite Rule - Caprese Chicken
Preheat the oven to 375-degrees.
Cut up the tomatoes and scrape out the insides. Dice the tomatoes discarding the insides & seeds.
Roll the basil leaves together and cut chiffonade.
Stuff tomato chunks and basil into each of the chicken pieces.
The Three Bite Rule - Caprese Chicken
Lay the chicken into a baking dish sprayed with non-stick spray.
Sprinkle with salt & pepper.
Bake 20 minutes. Flip each piece over and bake another 10-15 minutes.
Slice fresh mozzarella into 1/4 or 1/8 inch slices.
Check the internal chicken temperature to ensure it is fully cooked.

The Three Bite Rule - Caprese Chicken
Lay the cheese on top of the chicken and return to the oven just to melt.
Sprinkle with any remaining tomatoes and basil to serve.

The Three Bite Rule - Caprese Chicken
I opted not to butterfly cut the chicken since I was using chicken breast halves. The halves were plenty.

suggested adaptations: 
caprese chicken + balsamic reduction + pre-made bruschetta mix + rolled in breadcrumbs = bruschetta chicken
caprese chicken + caramelized onions/roasted garlic = big time caprese
caprese chicken – stuffing it + pulled chicken + on bread = caprese pulled chicken panini

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