Chicken Stuffed with Pesto, Ham, and Fontina Cheese

by Andie Mitchell on June 13, 2011

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A mulligan, so Wikipedia tells me, is when a player gets a second chance to perform a certain move or action. I gather it’s used mostly in sports.

It’s also used quite frequently in my house.

Daniel does something wrong….”Andie I just need a mulligan. I’m sorry; please let me start over.”

I take a few too many liberties with hot sauce and Daniel’s mouth catches fire at the dinner table. I need a mulligan. And a less extreme personality.

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Daniel gets frustrated a moment too soon, abruptly yells at me…he begs for a mulligan.

I do that funny thing I like to do where I lick up that last drippety drop of maple syrup before my love has even opened his eyes on Sunday mornings. I ask for a mulligan and then for him to make a quick trip to Safeway and buy more.

Daniel recants to all our friends about that time I picked up hitchhikers and took them to the police station. He’s going to come calling for a mulligan.

I wake him up no less than four times because all five of my previously recorded episodes of The View are positively bla-ring as I cook straight through Saturday and well into Sunday. I need a mulligan and a sound-proof cooking studio.


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Daniel forgets to lower the toilet seat and then smack dab in the middle of night I…well, we all know who needs a mulligan after that.

Both of us.

I get a smidge too feisty before dinner and say things that I [should] regret. I silently ask for a mulligan by serving this chicken dish.

It’s fragrant and rich from the basil pesto, creamy and salty from the cheesy center, and made smoky from the smoked ham.

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This chicken couldn’t be boring if she tried. The center stays juicy and moist, flavorful beyond flavorful, from all the savory sweet stuffing.

Oh. And it’s lightly breaded. You know how foods become exponentially more lovable when they’re breaded?


I skipped the whole ‘dip the chicken in flour, then egg, then breadcrumbs….’ because, well, it’s a hassle. This dinner, as fancy pants as it sounds, is quick and easy. It makes all ten of those pounds of chicken breast in my freezer more attractive.

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Perhaps my best mulligan to date.

Chicken Stuffed with Pesto, Ham, and Fontina Cheese

serves 2

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (~6 ounces each)
2 slices smoked ham or prosciutto
1 ounce fontina cheese, grated
2 tablespoons basil pesto
1/4 cup homemade or store-bought seasoned bread crumbs
2 teaspoons olive oil

Butterfly each chicken breast by slicing it thinly open like a book, taking care not to slice completely through both sides of the breast. Evenly distribute the ham, cheese, and pesto among one side of each opened chicken breast. Fold the empty sides over to cover the filling. Dredge each filled chicken breast in a shallow bowl filled with the breadcrumbs. Place them on a greased wire rack set on top of a roasting pan. Lightly brush the tops with the olive oil and bake for 20 minutes at 400 degrees F.

Nutrition Information for 1 Serving (1/2 of Entire Recipe): Calories 460, Total Fat 22.5 g, Total Carbohydrate 13.3 g, Dietary Fiber 1.3 g, Sugars  2.1 g, Protein 48.6 g

{ 43 comments… read them below or add one }

HootieMcBoob June 13, 2011 at 9:54 pm

HA funny you posted this now because tomorrow night (which is actually tonight because it is Tuesday here but since I can’t sleep yet it means it’s tomorrow still…or something. Maybe I am tired….) oh yeah, back to what I was saying…tomorrow night I was supposed to make your lemon chicken cordon bleu, but this sounds awesome and I might switch it up. Tonight I made your shrimp with the spicy garlic sauce. It was deeeeeelicious! So far, I’m batting a thousand with the CYSFD recipes: two weeks ago the tuna burgers, spicy shrimp tonight, and trying some form of yummy chicken tomorrow, then s’mores pancakes for the husband on Father’s Day. I like food.


Whitney W June 13, 2011 at 10:04 pm

This looks delicious! I am currently 29 weeks pregnant with twin boys and have been looking for fantastic meals that weren’t too time consuming or complicated to make. Thanks for sharing the recipe!


Halley June 13, 2011 at 11:38 pm

This is great Andie. It is mouth-watering. I love your use of pesto it is so flavourful!


Johnny June 14, 2011 at 2:39 am

Always looking for another twist on stuffed chicken breast, this looks awsome! Like the mulagan idea, The only problem, you’re only aloud 1 on the front 9 and 1 on the back 9. I would need one for every hole (in life that is!)!! :)


Lauren at Keep It Sweet June 14, 2011 at 2:50 am

I never would have thought to add pesto to this dish but it looks amazing!


Stephanie @cookinfanatic June 14, 2011 at 4:57 am

This sounds so good! Way to totally transform boring ol’ chicken breast into something fabulous, but I would expect nothing less coming out of your kitchen obviouslyyyy ;) Toilet seat comment lol = hilarious!!


ally@GirlVFood June 14, 2011 at 4:59 am

Any thing stuffed into a chicken breast is glorious. Fontina, ham, and pesto? It’s like my childhood ham and cheese croissandwiches from school but all grown up. BRAVA!


Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat June 14, 2011 at 5:15 am

Haha I love the comment about the toilet seat! This is a bit of a mulligan month for me in terms of recipes. I’m remaking a ton of the ones on my blog that I took ridiculously terrible photos of… my goal is to get through at least 10!


Jackie @ Baking Charms June 14, 2011 at 5:33 am

I think my boyfriend would love me forever if I made this for him… it looks amazing!


Kelly June 14, 2011 at 6:17 am



Alexa @ SimpleEats June 14, 2011 at 6:32 am

What an awesome combo with chicken. Pesto, cheese and chicken together is a God-send. Yum!


Brooke @ Waiting to Rise June 14, 2011 at 6:38 am

Wow…what an amazing recipe! And also, a great post….I need a few mulligans today…and yesterday….and the day before that….

but i digress, i truly look forward to reading your posts because usually they are in line with something going on in my life too.

thanks for being honest. You set a great example for me to follow when I blog!

Take care! B


MelissaNibbles June 14, 2011 at 6:58 am

This looks delicious.

I’d like a mulligan for my life!


Gina (Yogattude) June 14, 2011 at 7:15 am

I don’t think I’ve ever used fontina in a recipe…I’m going to have to change that very soon!


Joelle (On A Pink Typewriter) June 14, 2011 at 7:35 am

You crack me up! Your humor is just like mine which I genuinely appreciate. ;-) Plus that chicken looks perfect meal for a date night with my bf.. reminds me of something my Italian mama used to make when I was little, only with prosciutto and mozz instead of ham and fontina.
-Joelle (On A Pink Typewriter)


Carol June 14, 2011 at 7:43 am

I would definitely give you a mulligan if you put this in front of me! I adore all of your recipes, but this one so far looks the best to me! Can’t wait to try it out :]


Ashley @ Coffee Cake and Cardio June 14, 2011 at 7:44 am

What an amazing dinner!!! Can’t wait to try!


Sarah June 14, 2011 at 8:28 am

dude! this looks AMAZING!! I have to make this!!!


Tiff @ Love Sweat and Beers June 14, 2011 at 9:00 am

haha. The toilet seat bit cracks me up. The recipe looks great, though now my lunch seems much less appealing!


brandi June 14, 2011 at 9:02 am

you had me at pesto and fontina :) these look great – Nick would love it!


Leanne (Bride to Mrs.) June 14, 2011 at 9:17 am

the view <3

Reply June 14, 2011 at 10:29 am

I love everything about this! I think this will have to go on the menu next week!


Cindy June 14, 2011 at 10:31 am

goody goody goody, I am going to the store tonight!




Jess @ Stylish Stealthy and Healthy June 14, 2011 at 12:55 pm

If I was a construction worker and this was an attractive young lady crossing the street, I would totally whistle at it.
(Ok, I might have just whistled at my screen. But I’m a sucker for pesto.)


Brenda the Barefootcookingirl June 14, 2011 at 1:14 pm

Oh, lovely jubbly! This looks so scrummy!!! (Scrummy is scrumptious + yummy) Going to have to try this soon! BCG


tina @ vanillandspice June 14, 2011 at 4:07 pm

Although I don’t eat pork, this looks amazing. I’m sure if I canceled the ham out it would still be phenomenal.


KaraHadley June 14, 2011 at 4:36 pm

Things like this make me miss meat. And wish that even if I ate meat, I could manage to successfully cook it. Yup, I’m drooling.


Bianca @ Confessions of a Chocoholic June 14, 2011 at 5:08 pm

Haha I’ve never heard of a mulligan before, now I will be using it in conversation! Chicken breasts get a bad rep for being boring but you’re right, this dish is anything but!


chelsey @ clean eating chelsey June 14, 2011 at 6:20 pm

I have to ask for a mulligan because I don’t cook chicken enough for the husband.


Katie@Cozydelicious June 14, 2011 at 6:59 pm

This chicken looks amazing! So much flavor. I love that you say foods become more loveable when breaded… so true!


Tanya @ Sunday Baker June 14, 2011 at 8:42 pm

That first photo made my stomach rumble and it’s 11 p.m. Looks delicious!


Daniella June 14, 2011 at 9:47 pm

I can’t see your posts on day I just stopped getting them.. it says something about too many redirects =S


stephanie June 15, 2011 at 4:04 am

Andie shoots… and Andie Scores!!!


Jamie June 15, 2011 at 11:06 am

Wow does that picture scram “EAT ME NOW!” Absolutely mouthwatering! I would excuse anything if they served me this. And YAY your recipe is for two which is…perfect!


Bee June 16, 2011 at 6:56 pm

This looks like chicken cordon bleu’s cool older cousin that it wishes it could be more like. Sooo delicious sounding! Fresh pesto would make it eeeeven better–though I bet you used that, right?

I learned about a mulligan the day you posted this, how bizarre! I was helping out at my company’s charity golf tournament!


Natalie @ while I breathe June 19, 2011 at 6:17 pm

OMG I made these Friday night for the bf and anyone else at his house who was interested… would you believe they put in a request for it again today for father’s day!? SO delish and awesome… love it!


Decor Girl June 22, 2011 at 11:25 am

Excellent now I know what I am going to do with my left over pesto! This sounds so yummy!


Diana July 12, 2011 at 5:02 pm

Yum!! These were great! Another addition to the recipe binder for sure!


alison September 6, 2011 at 1:05 pm


do you have the nutritional info for this recipe! looks delicious…


Jeannette September 30, 2011 at 11:30 am

Here’s nutritional info (taken from, caveats all around) with a slice of smoked ham (3 oz, I think that sounds right?): 580 cals, 20 g fat, 119 g carbs, 77 g protein.

What I’m making tonight is a slightly modified version of this (this recipe crossed with the cordon bleu a bit?). I’m using prosciutto instead of thick ham, adding some dijon, and using just a light schmear of basil pesto and the nutrition info looks like this: 354 cals, 14 g fat, 31 g carbs, 50 g protein. This way I can still have one of Andie’s 100 calorie chocolate cupcakes for dessert, too.

I have loved every.recipe.I’ve.tried. Loved.


Dixie Redmond February 27, 2012 at 3:37 pm

This was really good. I used chicken breasts that were too thick and had to cook double the time to get interior cooked, even though I butterflied them. I am not sure what planet these organic chickens grow on because the breasts are huge!

Next time I will buy cutlets and just stack them or will pound the heck out of the breasts to get them really thin. But we liked the taste a lot!


Becky March 12, 2012 at 1:06 pm

Does anyone have any good suggestions for just cooking plain chicken breasts so that they stay moist? It seems that when I cook then on the stovetop they get dried out, but my temp/timing just might be off. I only cook for one, and chicken is a huge staple. Somehow I just have not quite figured it out yet though. Any help?


Suzana February 28, 2013 at 9:18 pm

Easily my favorite way to prepare chicken – this was fantastic!!


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