Stuffed Italian Chicken Rolls are savory tender little packages of goodness disguised as dinner! These chicken roll ups are filled with Rosmarino ham, cheese and tomatoes. One bite and you will be in your happy place!
My Sicilian mother has been making this for years and every time she makes it, I think to myself…”I have to make this some night”. Well that night finally came and I could not believe how easy this was to put together and how please my husband was to see it on the table!
Why I Love this Recipe
This recipe is really quite simple to make and it looks and tastes like you slaved over it. The fact is that it is packed with great ingredients that do all of the work for you.
Because the chicken rolls are fairly small, this works just as well as an appetizer as it does for your main course.
One last thing; you can prepare this up to 24 hours in advance and pop it in the oven when you are ready to serve it. Just put the rolls together and arrange it in your baking dish, cover it tightly and refrigerate it. I recommend taking it out of the refrigerator at least 30 minutes before baking it.
How to Make this Recipe
Ingredients and Substitutions
The ingredients list is pretty simple and if you don’t have exactly what I have used, that’s okay. Substitutions work just fine.
Chicken breast cutlets: These are basically chicken breast halves that have been cut in half horizontally. You can absolutely use regular chicken breast and either cut them your self or just pound them down to 1/4″ thick. They will be wider so your rolls will be a little larger then if you were to use cutlets.
Rosmarino Ham: If you aren’t familiar with this ham, it is an Italian ham that is coated with rosemary, garlic and other herbs. Delicious!! You can find this in most grocery stores, but if you can’t, use your favorite ham. You can even use prosciutto, salami or capicola.
Provolone Cheese: Either sharp or mild is fine. Mom has also used mozzarella when there was no provolone in the house.
Pecorino Romano Cheese: I love Pecorino and I would put it in everything if I could, but parmesan is also delicious in these roll ups.
How do you flatten chicken?
You will need to pound the chicken down until it is about 1/4″ thick so that it can be easily rolled up. To do this place the chicken breast skin side down between two sheets of plastic wrap and use the flat side of a kitchen mallet to gently pound the chicken out. If you don’t have a kitchen mallet, you can use a rolling pin or another heavy object such as a cast iron pan.
How to Make the Roll Ups
- Pound out the chicken breast, cut it in half and season it.
- Layer the ingredients on each piece.
- Roll the chicken up and secure with a toothpick.
- Place the chicken rolls in a baking dish and cover with the remaining tomatoes and sliced onions.
- Bake at 375 degrees for 30-35 minutes.
What to serve with this dish?
This is such a tasty recipe that you really don’t have to go crazy trying to find special side dishes. A loaf of bread and a simple arugula salad with parmesan shavings would make a delicious meal. You can also serve roasted or grilled vegetables such as asparagus or broccoli. Or it would be perfect over pasta or rice.
How to Store and Reheat
Any leftovers should be refrigerated in an airtight container. It will stay fresh in the refrigerator for about 4 days. To reheat it, you can place it in a oven safe dish in a 350 degree oven for about 15 minutes or until heated through. You can also reheat this in the microwave. All microwaves heat a little differently, but one or two minutes for several pieces is usually enough time in mine.
For this recipe I like to start by covering it for the first 20 minutes and then I uncover it for the last 10 minutes of cooking. This makes sure that the chicken cooks in it’s juices first and then uncovering it for the last 10 minutes allows it to brown up a bit on top. This helps the meat maintain it’s moisture.
Over cooking can result in a dry and chewy bird. Chicken breasts in particular have less fat in them so when they are over cooked the connective tissue in the breast can become rubbery.
There are a number of things that you can do to make sure that your chicken breast is moist and tender;
1. Pound out the chicken breast so that it is an even thickness throughout. This will allow the breast to cook evenly and you will avoid overcooking the thinner portions of the meat.
2. Cooking chicken with the skin on helps to maintain moisture in the meat.
3. Soak it in a brine or marinade before grilling or roasting. This also helps the meat soak in and retain moisture.
4. Use an instant read thermometer to check the temperature of the chicken and remove it from the oven once it has reached 165 degrees. Tent it and let it rest for 10 minutes before serving.
Looking for more chicken recipes?
Marinated Grilled Stuffed Chicken Breast
Chicken Limone (Pollo al Limone)
Quick Chicken and Spinach with Tomatoes
Italian Chicken with Peppers and Onions
Nonna’s Italian Breaded Chicken Cutlets
Stuffed Italian Chicken Rolls
- 1 kitchen mallet or another heavy object such as a cast iron pan or rolling pin
- 1 Oven safe baking dish
- 1 Piece of aluminum foil or oven safe baking dish cover
- 8 Toothpicks
- 4 Chicken Breast Cutlets skinless
- 4 slices Rosmarino Ham about ¼ lb.
- 4 slices Provolone cheese about ¼ lb.
- 15 oz Canned Whole Tomatoes in liquid or puree, broken up
- 2 tbsp Pecorino Romano Cheese grated
- 2 tbsp Italian Bread Crumbs seasoned
- 1 tsp Italian Seasoning
- 1 tsp Kosher Salt
- 1 tsp Ground Black Pepper
- ½ Onion medium, thin sliced
- Pre-heat oven to 375°. Lightly grease a baking dish.
- Pound the chicken breast to 1/4" thickness then cut it in half lengthwise from the widest end to the narrowest end.
- Salt and pepper both sides of the chicken. Lay each piece skin side down. Lay ½ a slice of ham the each piece, then ½ slice of provolone, several small pieces of tomato, about ¼ tsp of bread crumbs, ¼ tsp of Pecorino Romano cheese and top with some Italian seasoning.
- Starting with the widest end of the chicken breast roll in jelly roll fashion toward the narrow tip. Secure the chicken roll with a tooth pick and place in the baking dish.
- Top the chicken rolls with the remaining tomatoes and sliced onion. Cover with foil or a glass lid and bake for 20 minutes. Remove the foil and continue to bake for another 10 -15 minutes until the chicken is cooked all they way through.