Last week I became obsessed with the idea of making stuffed mushrooms. I really have no idea why. I was mostly trying to figure out something to do with the pile of cremini mushrooms in my fridge, other than just eating them on a salad like I had been. Normally cooking something, stuffing it inside another thing, and then cooking again is way too much work for me.
I looked up a few stuffed mushroom recipes and decided there wasn’t enough protein in the meals, so they would be a side dish. Ain’t nobody got that kinda time for a side dish. But now I was onto an idea of “sausage stuffed” something.
Enter, the chicken breast. Nature’s perfect meat pouch.
Everyone knows that pork and chicken go together like peanut butter and jelly. With a combination of sausage, chicken, mushrooms, and cheese, I knew I could have a winner winner chicken dinner. Literally.
I assembled some ingredients partially just based on what I had in my fridge. I chose my go-to low fat cream cheese because there really isn’t anything that isn’t improved by cream cheese. But for an extra creamy, cheesy kick, I also added some shredded KerryGold Skellig sweet cheddar (not pictured). The other base ingredients are the chicken breasts, the sausage (I love Jimmy Dean’s reduced fat pork sausage, but any sausage will do), the aforementioned cremini mushrooms, minced garlic, and some salt and pepper.
I also added some of this delicious hot sauce I found in the commissary, because I’m obsessed with it. You can leave that out if you like.
First, you’ll need to prepare the stuffing by browning the sausage and giving the mushrooms a good chopping. If you’re not using pre-shredded cheese, you’ll need to shred some cheese as well.
In a separate bowl, combine your cooked sausage, cream cheese, shredded cheese, chopped mushrooms, hot sauce (optional), garlic, and some salt and pepper. I mostly squished it together with a combination of a fork and my hands, but it’s a bit easier to mix if the sausage is still warm.
Begin by trimming the chicken breasts of any excess skin and chewy bits, and then carefully cut them into meat pockets.
I’m fully aware of their resemblance to female genitalia.
Then, liberally salt-and-pepper the outside of the pocket, and maybe the inside a little too. It’s easier to do this now than after they’re stuffed with deliciousness.
Once seasoned, you can stuff the chicken pockets with your desired amount of stuffing. The first night I made these, I stuffed waayyyy too much into them, and they became some sort of frightening chicken popover thing. Still delicious, but a bit over the top (heh). The next night I halved the amount so I could pin the pocket closed with a couple of toothpicks so it would roast all nice and evenly.
It ended up being about a quarter cup of stuffing per normal-sized chicken breast. You may need more or less depending on the size of your breasts. Um…your chicken breasts, not your actual breasts, if you have breasts, though I suppose even men technically have breasts…
Whether you have actual large or small breasts, you will need to stuff your meat pockets with as a much sausage as they can accommodate……
This is escalating quickly.
Pin them closed with some toothpicks and quickly throw them in a baking dish and into a preheated 400° oven before they continue making jokes about meat pockets and sausage.
You want to bake them until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165. This took about 30 minutes for mine, but that time will vary depending on your oven and the size of the chicken breasts and the thickness of the pockets. Anywhere from 25 – 40 minutes is probably a safe assumption. Pro tip: Remove the chicken when it reaches about 160 and let it rest for 5-10 minutes. During the rest period, it will continue cooking internally and the juices will pull back into the meat. Everyone likes a juicy chicken breast.
Following the resting period, remove the toothpicks, and serve with your favorite sides. I enjoy it paired with some roasted broccoli because the broccoli is great for soaking up escaped cheese sauce.
Yum! Much creamy. Much meaty. Much cheesy.
You’ll notice the recipe that follows is a bit odd. It’s a serving for one. This recipe is intended to be modified to suit you and your needs/tastes. You can very easily increase the amounts to make a whole family dinner. I found that once the sausage was cooked and mushrooms chopped, it was very easy to make this again on subsequent nights and adjust the amounts of stuffing ingredients as needed. Measure, manage, and enjoy!
Creamy Sausage Stuffed Chicken
Boneless, skinless chicken breasts stuffed with a delicious mixture of sausage, cream cheese, and mushrooms. Single serving recipe!
- 40 g Jimmy Dean reduced fat sausage, browned and crumbled Sub with your favorite sausage if desired!
- 20 g Cremini mushrooms, chopped
- 20 g Reduced fat cream cheese Sub with full fat cream cheese if desired
- 14 g Kerry Gold Skellig sweet cheddar cheese, shredded Sub with any shredded cheese
- 0.5 tsp Minced garlic or 1 clove fresh garlic
- to taste hot sauce
- to taste salt and pepper
- 1 boneless, skinless chicken breast
- to taste salt and pepper
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Prepare the Stuffing
Begin by browning the sausage and setting aside.
Chop the mushrooms into roughly 1/4 inch sized pieces.
In a small mixing bowl, combine the sausage, mushrooms, cream cheese, garlic, shredded cheese, hot sauce (optional), and salt and pepper to taste.
Prepare the Chicken Breasts
Carefully cut the chicken breasts down the long sides, but not all the way through, to form a "pocket."
Salt & pepper the outside of the pocket to taste.
Stuff the sausage and mushroom mixture into the chicken breast, pressing firmly to keep it in. Pin the pocket closed with a couple of toothpicks.
Bake in the preheated oven for 25-35 minutes or until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165. Tip: Remove chicken around 155/160 and allow it to rest until 165 for maximum juiciness!