Creamy Pepperjack Cheese Stuffed Chicken Breast is seared in a cast iron pan, and baked until juicy and delicious. A perfect weeknight dinner!
After making a few variations of stuffed chicken breasts (this recipe is inspired by I Wash You Dry's Broccoli Cheese Stuffed Chicken,) the Mancub decided that stuffing the chicken with cream cheese, pepper jack cheese, and bell pepper was his very favorite way to eat it. You're gonna want to buy a lot of chicken, because you'll make it again and again. Because CHEESE.
I have a low tolerance for spicy foods but this is amazing and just warm enough to be lovely in my belly. How spicy it is really depends on the brand of pepperjack cheese you use.
Tips for making Creamy Pepperjack Cheese Stuffed Chicken Breasts:
- Use plump, medium sized chicken breasts. Very large ones will take a longer time to cook, and smaller ones may dry out in the oven if you have large and small sizes cooking at the same time.
- Make sure you don't cut all the way through the chicken breast, just enough to create a pocket to stuff the filling into.
- Use toothpicks or skewers to seal the edges of the chicken breast shut so the filling doesn't all fall out.
- If you don't have a cast iron frying pan, you can use a regular pan and then a baking dish to finish baking the chicken.
- The internal temperature of the chicken breast should be 165 F when finished baking to be safe to eat. Too much higher and the chicken will dry out. I use an instant read thermometer in the thickest part of the breast to make sure it's cooked properly.
- After it's finished baking, cover the chicken with foil and let it rest for at least 5 minutes before serving for maximum juiciness.
Once the stuffed chicken breasts are ready, I oil and heat my cast iron frying pan. If you don't own one, I highly recommend investing in one! Heavy bottomed pans like cast iron are easier to cook with in my opinion. They eat much more evenly and sear the chicken to juicy perfection. After searing, I pop them in the oven to finish baking and rest them for 5-10 minutes covered in foil.
Why do you let meat rest after cooking?
Letting the chicken rest after baking helps the muscle fibers relax and helps the juices and flavor reabsorb into the meat before cutting into it. This goes for all meat and is preached by many steak purists, but it applies to chicken as well. I usually tent the pan in foil and let the chicken rest while I finish preparing the final touches of the meal.
Voila! Perfect, juicy stuffed chicken breasts. Keep in mind, larger chicken breasts will need longer to cook and smaller ones may need less time. It is wise to use an instant read thermometer to help know when the chicken is finished cooking.
Can I freeze creamy stuffed chicken breasts?
Yes! I would wrap individually in plastic wrap and then place in freezer safe container or bag and freeze for up to 3 months. Then thaw completely in refrigerator before cooking.
Creamy Pepperjack Stuffed Chicken Breast
- heavy bottomed frying pan, such as cast iron.
- toothpicks or skewers
- 3 large raw chicken breasts
- 4 oz softened cream cheese
- 1 cup shredded pepperjack cheese
- ½ red bell pepper, chopped finely
- ¼ cup finely chopped onion
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- 2 Tablespoons olive oil
- ½ teaspoon cumin
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon chili powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground pepper
- Preheat oven to 400 F.
- In a small bowl combine softened cream cheese, shredded pepperjack cheese, bell pepper, chopped onion, garlic powder, and onion powder. Mix well.
- Using a sharp knife, slice through the middle of each chicken breast lengthwise (not all the way through) to create a pocket to stuff the filling into. I leave at least a half inch on each end unsliced so that the filling does not fall out.
- Spoon filling into each chicken breast, dividing filling evenly between them. (If you have extras you can spread it over the top of the chicken after searing in the pan before it goes in the oven.) Using toothpicks or skewers, pin the edges of the chicken shut at a diagonal angle.
- Combine ingredients for dry rub (cumin, garlic, chili powder, salt, and pepper) and sprinkle over both sides of each chicken breast carefully.
- Heat a large oven safe frying pan (I use cast iron) over medium heat, and add olive oil. If you don't have an oven safe frying pan just use a normal one, then transfer the chicken to baking dish. Sear chicken for about 4 minutes on each side, making sure they do not burn. Any extra filling can be spread on chicken breasts at this point.
- Immediately transfer to preheated oven (if using a regular frying pan transfer to oven safe baking dish) and bake at 400 F for 15-18 minutes, or until instant read thermometer in thickest part of breast reads at least 165 F. Remove from oven, cover pan in foil, and let rest 5 minutes before serving.