Monday, September 24, 2012

Jalapeno Popper Chicken

Whenever we go out to eat or even if we buy frozen appetizers from the grocery store, we usually enjoy some jalapeno poppers. Usually, they're pretty good.  Although, sometimes you'll get those duds that are a little soggy or have no flavor.

I enjoy jalapeno flavor but I don't always enjoy very much spice. This dish was perfect for me because you definitely got the flavor of jalapenos but it wasn't overwhelming.  You can keep some of the seeds in the jalapenos if you'd like to kick up the flavor a little bit.

This chicken has been on my radar for awhile now and we finally had the jalapenos on hand thanks to my Mom and Dad's plentiful garden.  This meal came together rather quickly but felt like it was more labor intensive than it was The chicken breasts that we had were very thick so I probably should have doubled the filling.

I took some leftovers for lunch the following day and it was good but dry.  I am pretty sure that's because I warmed it in the microwave.  I think leftovers warmed in the oven would be very good.

Jalapeno Popper Chicken
Adapted From: Elly Says Opa! 
1/2 cup breadcrumbs
2 tsp taco seasoning
2 egg
4 oz reduced fat cream cheese
1/4-1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1-2 jalapeno peppers, seeds and ribs removed, minced
3 chicken breasts

Preheat the oven to 375 and line a baking sheet with foil. Lightly spray the foil with cooking spray.

In a small skillet over medium heat, warm the breadcrumbs (I was hoping this would toast them a little, but I don't think it did.  Next time, I might use the panko breadcrumbs Elly's recipe suggests).

Add the taco seasoning to the breadcrumbs and place in a shallow dish.

In a separate shallow bowl or dish, lightly beat the eggs.  In another shallow bowl or dish combine the cream cheese, cheddar cheese and jalapenos.

Using a small knife, cut a pocket into the side of each chicken breast or horizontally slice the chicken through the center, until it is almost butterflied. Season the chicken lightly with salt and pepper and then divide the cream cheese mixture evenly between each chicken breast's pocket. I used a pampered chef scoop and that worked really well.  One thing I would recommend is to warm the cream cheese slightly so that it's more easily spread on the chicken breasts.

Dip the chicken pieces one at a time, first into the egg, then into the breadcrumb mixture, making sure to coat the chicken completely.  Place the chicken onto your prepared baking sheet and cook for about 45 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through.

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