It isn’t often around here that we have the same thing for dinner two weeks in a row. But, after I made these awesome little Chicken Florentine Bundles one night, and watched my family devour them in a matter of minutes, I knew I was onto something. So, on another crazy night the following week, I made them again. And they devoured them again. And nobody complained. Children smiled, angels sang, and all was right with the world.
OK, maybe it wasn’t that dramatic, but you know what I mean. It’s good stuff all around.
These delicious little chicken rollups, stuffed with spinach and cheese, are really easy to put together. They can be made up ahead of time, or right before you bake them up. And as an added bonus, every ingredient is something I pretty much always have on hand.
The filling is simply a package of frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry, some softened cream cheese, a cup of shredded mozzarella, and a hefty sprinkle of Parmesan.
I stirred that all together, and then spread the mixture over boneless, skinless chicken breasts that I’d pounded out so they were nice and thin.
I crumbled up some buttery crackers (I used Ritz), and placed them in a bowl. Then, I beat an egg and a little bit of water in another bowl. I rolled up my chicken breasts around the spinach filling and secured the ends with a toothpick before dipping them into the egg and rolling them in the buttery crumbs.
When they were all rolled up, they went into a greased 9×13 baking dish and headed into the oven for about thirty minutes.
Make sure you test the temperature of your chicken before removing it from the oven. It needs to be cooked through to 165*, and sometimes when chicken is rolled up like this, it can be a little tricky. If it’s not at 165* after thirty minutes, give it a little more time.
While the chicken was cooking, I cooked up a box of spaghetti and heated up some marinara sauce.
When the chicken was cooked through, it came out of the oven golden brown.
The cracker crumbs were buttery and toasty, and we couldn’t wait to dig in (again).
I removed the toothpicks, and served the chicken rolls over the pasta with a generous ladle of sauce, right over the top, and a little more cheese to finish it off.
See? How great is that? Easy AND everyone loves it. We may just need to have them again next week.
CHICKEN FLORENTINE BUNDLES
- 6 thin boneless, skinless chicken breasts (pounded down if they are too thick to roll)
- 4 oz. cream cheese, softened (I used low-fat)
- 1 (10 oz.) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
- 1½ cups shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
- 6 Tbsp grated Parmesan cheese, divided
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 egg, beaten
- 1 tsp. water
- 10-12 buttery crackers, crushed (I used Ritz)
- Pasta sauce
- 1 lb. pasta
- Preheat the oven to 375*F. Spray a 9x13 inch baking dish with nonstick spray and set aside.
- In a medium-sized bowl, combine the spinach, cream cheese, 1 cup of the mozzarella, and 3 tablespoons of the Parmesan. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
- Spread the cheese mixture over the chicken breasts. Roll up the chicken breasts tightly, and secure the ends with a toothpick.
- Combine the beaten egg and water in a bowl. Combine the cracker crumbs and remaining Parmesan in a shallow dish.
- Dip each chicken roll in the egg wash and then roll in the cracker crumbs to coat. Place the chicken toothpick side down into the baking dish. Repeat with the other chicken breasts.
- Sprinkle any remaining crumbs over the top of the chicken.
- Bake, at 375* F for approximately 30 minutes. Crumbs should be golden brown and the chicken should register at 165*F.
- Meanwhile, prepare the pasta and pasta sauce.
- Serve the chicken roll ups over the pasta, and topped with pasta sauce and remaining mozzarella cheese.