Cookin' Lean Like Paula Deen

Today we have a special treat for you! Lindsay, over at Cookin' Lean Like Paula Deen is our guest blogger and has whipped up a new recipe for us to try. Lindsay loves to take scrumptious recipes and make them a little (sometimes a lot!) more nutritionaly appealing. Today, she's worked her magic on this fabulous chicken recipe.

Stuffed Chicken with Blue Cheese & Walnuts

Serves 4

Recipe inspired by Rachael Ray’s BACON WRAPPED CHICKEN WITH BLUE CHEESE AND PECANS 

Anything wrapped in bacon has got to be good! However good tastin’ isn’t always the best for us nutritionally. Inspired by Rachael’s recipe, I was able to create a dish that is both delicious and nutritious; keeping all of the flavors intact, yet cutting the fat in half! With a few little switches to ingredients and cooking style, you can have a savory, cheesy, bacon-y chicken dish without any of the guilt. Serve it with some steamed greens or a salad and you have dinner!!

INGREDIENTS:

  • 4 pieces boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup REDUCED-FAT blue cheese crumbles
  • 1/4 cup toasted walnuts, chopped
  • 2 scallions, sliced on bias
  • 2 slices good-quality center cut bacon
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup low-sodium/fat free chicken stock
  • 1/2 cup FAT FREE half-and-half or cream
  • 2 tablespoons grainy mustard
  • 2 tablespoons “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter” Light Soft Spread
  • Special equipment: toothpicks

DIRECTIONS:

Heat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Cut the chicken across the breast but not all the way through. Use the knife to cut inside, toward the outer edges, creating a pocket. Open the breasts up and season the chicken lightly with salt and pepper.

Stuff the seasoned chicken cutlets with REDUCED-FAT blue cheese crumbles, walnuts and scallions, using equal amounts for each of the three ingredients.  Season the outside again with salt and pepper.

Place the chicken on a small baking sheet. Cook in the oven for 25 minutes. (Cooking times may vary. Be sure chicken is cooked thoroughly before removing from the oven.)

Melt the ICBINB in a skillet pan over medium heat. Whisk in flour, cook 1 minute then whisk in stock. Let thicken a minute then whisk in the half-and-half and grain mustard, season with salt and pepper, reduce heat to warm.

Rachael recommends halving the chicken and stacking ‘em to show off the center. Set chicken in gravy or pour over top.

RESULTS:

So delish!

To cut calories and fat from the original recipe, I chose to bake the chicken instead of starting with a pan fry and moving to the oven. Bacon went from being wrapped around the chicken to being sprinkled sparingly on top. Other savings came from using reduced-fat blue cheese, I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter (light spread) and fat free half-and-half. Just those little modifications to the original recipe gave us these results! Half the fat, saves over 100 calories and still tastes amazing?!?!? It is true! Check out the nutritional facts and then print out the recipe to try for yourself.

ENJOY!

BEFORE~463.8 calories / 32.4g fat / 5.8g carbohydrate / 36.4g protein / .8g fiber

AFTER~ 333.6 calories / 16.9g fat / 6.9g carbohydrate / 34.6g protein / 1.1g fiber

SAVES~ 130.2 calories & 15.5g fat

Thank you, Lindsay! If any of our readers decide to make this yummy dish, be sure to stop back in and let us know how you like it!

Cheers!
Karee & the BAM Team