This delicious Ham and Cheese Stuffed Chicken simply must make your post-holiday menu. It is a great way to use up leftover ham and it tastes like a gourmet meal! Perfectly seasoned chicken, butterflied and stuffed with diced ham, melty swiss cheese, and fresh chopped spinach! If you are looking for a simple and amazing recipe for your next Holiday Honey Baked Ham, look no further!
Ham and Cheese Stuffed Chicken
I can’t tell you how many times I have stood in front of the fridge after a big get-together and wondered, “What am I going to do with all of this leftover ham?!?” Enter Ham and Cheese Stuffed Chicken!
We love stuffed chicken recipes around here, if you are like us, make sure to check out mushroom stuffed chicken and Jalapeno Popper Stuffed Chicken! This recipe came up after we made ham and cheese pastry puffs. The filling was so delicious we just had to try it stuffed inside of the chicken as well. This recipe converts your left-over ham problem into a gourmet solution.
Ham and Cheese Stuffed Chicken Recipe
To make this ham and cheese stuffed chicken recipe, you will likely need a few ingredients that probably don’t have a permanent spot in your refrigerator. So, some planning ahead is required but certainly not difficult. When I made this recipe, I actually DID happen to have most items on hand. So, it is not entirely out of the question. For some reason, spinach usually ends up in the compost pile here. By the time I get around to cooking it all, it has turned. However, that was not the case in this scenario!
How to Make a Ham and Cheese Stuffed Chicken
This recipe is relatively straightforward, however, there are a few key steps along the way
Prepare the Ham and Cheese Mixture
Start by creating your roux. This will be the thickening agent in this recipe. Melt the butter completely and then add in the flour and salt. Whisk to combine and cook for 1-2 minutes (be careful not to burn). Pour in the warm milk in 2 batches, whisking constantly until smooth and boiling. Reduce the heat down to low and then simmer, stirring occasionally until the sauce starts to thicken. Add in the spinach, stir it up until it starts to wilt. Add in the cheese and ham. Mix everything well until the cheese is fully melted and then set this aside.
To butterfly the chicken put your chicken breast on a chopping board and, with your hand flat on top of it, use a sharp knife to slice into one side of the breast, starting at the thicker end and ending at the thin point. Be careful not to cut all the way through to the other side. You are essentially doubling the size of the chicken breast without cutting it in two. Another method is to use a meat mallet and flatten the chicken breast. Both work, you should be working towards about a 1/4 inch in thickness.
Assemble Stuffed Chicken
Grab your butterflied chicken. Add a healthy dollop of the Ham and Cheese mixture directly in the center of the chicken breast. I like to add some freshly grated swiss right on the top. Next, fold the chicken closed and secure with a toothpick. Add butter and oil to your already hot frying pan and once that starts to sizzle, add the chicken. You will cook for 5-6 minutes per side.
Please note, this is just a guideline. Cooking chicken is different based on how big and how thick the chicken is, as well as how hot your pan gets. A skillet will have a more even temperature, but most frying pans have hot spots and that can affect cooking time too. Your best bet is to insert a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the chicken and look for a temperature of 165°F. Then you will know for sure the chicken is safe to eat.
Looking for More Ham Recipes?
HAM AND CHEESE STUFFED CHICKEN
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 cup whole milk, room temperature
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 2 cups cooked ham, diced
- 2 cups fresh spinach
- 1 ½ cup Swiss cheese, grated and divided
- 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 1 teaspoons paprika
- Melt butter over medium heat in a saucepan.
- Add flour and salt; cook for 1 minute, stirring frequently.
- Pour in the warm milk in 2 batches, whisking constantly until smooth and boiling.
- Reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally until sauce starts to thicken.
- Add in spinach and cook for 1 minute, just until wilted.
- Add ham and 1 cup of Swiss cheese and stir well. Set aside.
- Wash, dry, and butterfly chicken breasts. (To butterfly put your chicken breast on a chopping board and, with your hand flat on top of it, use a sharp knife to slice into one side of the breast, starting at the thicker end and ending at the thin point. Be careful not to cut all the way through to the other side.)
- Season chicken on both sides with garlic powder, paprika, salt, and pepper.
- Add 1-2 tablespoons of the filling into the center of the butterflied chicken.
- Close the chicken and secure with a toothpick.
- In a skillet, over medium heat, add oil and butter and cook until it starts to sizzle.
- Add chicken to skillet and cook 5-6 minutes on each side, or until it reaches an internal temperature of 165°F.
- Top with remaining grated swiss cheese.
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