Friday, April 25, 2014

Spinach Artichoke Dip Stuffed Chicken Breasts

I have always been a big fan of any dish with spinach, including Spinach Artichoke Dip. However, the version you get in the restaurants is jammed packed with fat, calories, carbs and salt. There has to be a way to make this in a healthier version. So I set off to experiment.

You will need:
4 fresh boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 cup fresh spinach leaves, shredded
1/2 cup drained, rinsed and chopped artichoke hearts. (Rinsing reduces the salt content by 25%)
1/3 cup light mayonnaise
1/3 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
2 TBSP of shredded low fat Mozzarella cheese
1/4 tsp onion powder
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1 large clove chopped fresh garlic or 1/4 tsp of garlic powder
Non-stick cooking spray or Olive Oil

Trim all visible fat from chicken breasts, wash and pat dry. Set aside.

Mix spinach and artichoke together in a microwave proof bowl. Microwave in high for 90 seconds. Remove from microwave and stir in mayonnaise and the two cheeses. Add onion powder, black ground pepper and garlic and stir until well mixed. Set aside.

Grill chicken breasts in a hot grill pan that has been sprayed with cooking spray or olive oil to prevent sticking. Cooking time will vary depending on on the thickness of the pieces of chicken. Ours were pretty thick, so I grilled them for 7 minutes on each side and then split them down the middle almost all the way to essentially 'butterfly them" and and cooked them further butterfly side down until they were golden brown and done, but still juicy.

Flip breasts over so split side is up and spread 1/4 of the dip mixture across the top. Close each breast so dip becomes stuffing, reduce the heat to medium and continue to cook 2-3 minutes longer, until the filling is warm and the cheese begins to melt.

Serve immediately and sprinkle with additional cheese if desired. Enjoy!

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