Spinach Artichoke Stuffed Chicken

5 from 9 votes
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This spinach artichoke stuffed chicken breast is a culinary delight that marries the creamy, savory flavors of a classic dip with the succulent, tender embrace of chicken. The recipe promises a mouthwatering fusion of textures and tastes, transforming an everyday meal into an extraordinary one.

For more creative variations, try my lasagna stuffed chicken, asparagus stuffed chicken, and mozzarella stuffed chicken.

Four spinach artichoke stuffed chicken breasts cooking in a large skillet.

I’m a big fan of creamy spinach artichoke dip, but instead of eating it as an appetizer, I stuffed it inside a chicken breast and made it an entree. Combining lean chicken breast with the flavorful mix of spinach and artichokes offers a delicious way to incorporate more vegetables into my diet. It provides a balanced weeknight meal with protein, fiber, and essential nutrients.

This recipe offers a creative twist on traditional chicken dishes, and it’s the perfect choice for those looking to enjoy a gourmet meal without spending hours in the kitchen. I like how this dish appeals to low carb health-conscious eaters and lovers of rich, comforting flavors.

Recipe ingredients

Artichoke and spinach in a bowl with a variety of cheeses.
  • Chicken: Use boneless, skinless chicken breast about 8 to 12 ounces in weight. This size provides a large enough pocket for filling. If using larger pieces, closely monitor the bake time and adjust as needed.
  • Spinach: Fresh baby spinach is exceptionally tender. I find it easy to grab 3 cups and chop them down fine with a chef’s knife to yield 1 cup. If you have frozen chopped spinach, that’s a great substitute. Just defrost, then squeeze out the excess moisture. Measure out 1 cup to add to the recipe.
  • Artichokes: I used jarred marinated artichoke hearts, which have already been cooked and seasoned with oil, vinegar, and spices. It adds a lot of flavor to the filling.
  • Cream Cheese: Cream cheese is used as the base. It’s tangy, super rich, and has a hint of sweetness. The stickiness helps bind the ingredients together.
  • Mozzarella: Shredded mozzarella is a young cheese with enough moisture to give a nice melty consistency when the filling is heated.
  • Parmesan: Since the flavor of mozzarella is mild, I pair it with grated parmesan cheese. This aged variety gives a nutty and salty taste.
  • Sour Cream: Makes the cheese filling consistency lighter and adds a tangy flavor to balance the richness of the stuffing.
  • Seasoning: A mixture of minced garlic, salt, and black pepper.
  • Oil: Use olive oil to sear the surface of the poultry before baking in the oven.

See the recipe card below for all ingredients and measurements (US and metric).

Step 1: Preheat the oven to 375ºF (191ºC) as the chicken will finish cooking in the oven.

Make the filling

Making a spinach artichoke filling mixture inside a bowl.

Step 2: Ensure the cream cheese is softened to about room temperature. Doing so will make it much easier to mix all the ingredients. Combine the chopped spinach, artichoke hearts, cream cheese, mozzarella, parmesan, minced garlic, sour cream, salt, and pepper. Thoroughly stir the mixture for an even distribution of the seasonings.

Make Ahead Tip: If you want to meal prep, you can store the filling in the refrigerator for three days so it can be quickly stuffed the day of serving.

Make the pocket

Person holding a chicken breast down on a cutting board while making a knife incision down the side of the meat.

Slice lengthwise down the side.

Knife cutting a pocket into a piece of chicken breast.

Repeat to make a deeper incision.

Step 3: Grab a cutting board and sharp paring or utility knife to create a pocket in the side of the breast. Cut a slit on the thickest part of the chicken, about 4 to 5 inches long. Make a pocket about 2 to 3 inches deep, keeping the other side intact.

Season the meat

Person sprinkling a salt and pepper mixture on top of a chicken breast.

Step 4: Season the chicken’s surface with salt and pepper. You can also add herbs like Italian seasoning or savory spices like paprika, garlic powder, or onion powder.

Stuff the chicken

Two seasoned chicken breasts stuffed with a green spinach, cheese and artichoke filling.
Four pieces of stuffed chicken with toothpicks inserted to keep the filling inside during cooking.

Step 5: The spinach artichoke mixture makes about 2 cups of filling. Use about ½ cup, depending on the size of the pocket. If you have toothpicks, seal the edge closed to prevent the hot and cheesy filling from oozing out too much.

As the chicken cooks, the proteins will shrink, pushing out some of the filling. If you don’t have toothpicks, it’s okay. Just scoop any filling back in the pocket before serving or on the top as an extra sauce.

Sear the chicken breasts

Flipping over a chicken breast with metal tongs cooking in a pan.

Step 6: Use a 12-inch oven-proof pan like a cast iron skillet or wide Dutch oven. This allows you to go from searing on the stovetop to going directly into the oven to finish cooking. No extra dishes!

The chicken is first seared in hot olive oil over medium heat. The direct contact with the pan will develop a beautiful golden crust in just 5 minutes. Flip and cook for another 3 minutes to kickstart the browning on the bottom.

Finish cooking in the oven

Step 7: The breast is thick, so to prevent dried chicken, transfer it to an oven set at 375ºF (191ºC) for about 10 to 15 minutes. The spinach artichoke filling should be hot, bubbly, and melted. Use an instant-read thermometer to check the top and bottom pieces of the chicken for doneness. Look for an internal temperature of 160 to 165ºF (71 to 74ºC).

Garnish and serve

Step 8: Transfer the cooked stuffed chicken breasts to a platter or dish before serving. Rest for 5 minutes to allow the juices to redistribute. Don’t forget to remove those toothpicks! Garnish it with a sprinkle of chopped parsley, and it’s ready to serve.

Flavor variations

This recipe for stuffed chicken with artichoke and spinach is easy to switch up! Try these delicious options:

  • Artichokes: Frozen, canned, or fresh artichoke hearts can be used. However, after tasting the filling mixture, you may need to add some additional seasoning or vinegar.
  • Greens: Instead of spinach, chop up kale, cabbage, or Swiss chard.
  • Cheese: Try gruyere, swiss, fontina, provolone, cheddar, or smoked gouda. Cream cheese can be replaced with ricotta, Boursin, or creme fraise.
  • Dairy: Instead of sour cream, add plain Greek yogurt.
  • Herbs: Garnish the chicken with parsley, dill, chives, green onions, tarragon, or sliced basil.

Serving suggestions

Frequently asked questions

How long does it take to cook spinach artichoke stuffed chicken?

The stuffed chicken breast is first cooked on the stovetop over medium heat to create a flavorful crust, which takes about 8 minutes. The chicken is then transferred to the oven at 375 degrees to cook the meat thoroughly. This process takes about 10 to 15 minutes, depending on the thickness—plan for about 20 to 25 minutes of total cook time.

Can I use frozen spinach and artichoke hearts?

Yes! Make sure to defrost and drain the vegetables before making the filling mixture. The artichoke hearts will need to be roughly chopped before adding. Taste the filling and adjust the seasoning for extra flavor, as the artichoke hearts won’t be marinated.

Side view of a stuffed chicken breast with spinach artichoke filling inside.

Using fresh artichokes

Artichokes are in season from the spring and fall. Cook the artichokes by boiling or steaming, remove the heart, and enjoy the leaves with your favorite dipping sauce. You’ll need ¾ cup of chopped hearts for the recipe. If you’d like, you can add wine, red wine vinegar, or lemon juice to the filling for a hint of tartness.

Spinach Artichoke Stuffed Chicken

Easy to make spinach artichoke stuffed chicken breast recipe loaded with melty cheese and vegetables. Great for meal prep too!
5 from 9 votes
Prep Time20 minutes
Cook Time20 minutes
Total Time40 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Course Entree
Cuisine American

Ingredients 
 

  • 1 cup finely chopped spinach
  • ¾ cup roughly chopped marinated artichoke hearts
  • 6 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • ½ cup shredded mozzarella
  • ¼ cup grated parmesan cheese
  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1 ½ teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • ¾ teaspoon black pepper, divided
  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breast, about 2 ½ to 3 pounds total
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon chopped parsley

Instructions 

  • Preheat the Oven – Set the oven rack to the lower-middle position. Preheat to 375ºF (191ºC).
  • Make the Filling – In a large bowl, combine spinach, artichoke hearts, cream cheese, mozzarella cheese, parmesan cheese, sour cream, garlic, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon black pepper. Set aside, or cover and refrigerate if not using immediately.
  • Prepare the Chicken – On the thickest side of the chicken breast, cut a 4 to 5-inch long slit. Continue to cut a 2 to 3-inch deep pocket, leaving about a ½-inch uncut area to keep the other side connected. Repeat with the remaining pieces.
  • Season the Chicken – In a small bowl, combine 1 teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon black pepper. Evenly season each side of the chicken with the mixture.
  • Stuff the Chicken – Add the filling into the pocket of each chicken breast, about ½ cup, do not overfill. If available, close the opening with toothpicks to secure the filling inside.
  • Sear the Surface – Heat a large oven-proof skillet over medium heat. Once the pan is hot, add the olive oil. Add the chicken, presentation-side down, and lightly press to make contact with the pan. Cook until golden-brown on the surface, about 5 minutes. Flip and cook for 3 minutes. If using smaller breasts, check for doneness, as baking may not be necessary.
  • Transfer to the Oven – Bake until the meat is no longer pink, and the internal temperature reaches 160 to 165ºF (71 to 74ºC) on a meat thermometer, about 10 to 15 minutes, depending on the thickness.
  • To Serve – Transfer to a serving dish and rest for 5 minutes. Remove the toothpicks and serve while still hot. Garnish with chopped parsley.

Recipe Video

YouTube video

Notes

  • Filling Yield: Makes about 2 cups.
  • Storing: Cool completely and store in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
  • Reheating: Cover and reheat in the microwave on high in 15 to 30-second increments until hot.
  • Using Frozen Spinach: Defrost and drain 1 cup of frozen chopped spinach.
  • Make Ahead: The filling can be made separately, 3 days in advance. The chicken can be stuffed, covered, and refrigerated for up to 3 days before cooking.
  • Bake-Only Directions: Place stuffed chicken on a greased foil-lined sheet pan. Bake at 425ºF (218ºC) for about 20 to 25 minutes, depending on the thickness.

Nutrition Facts

Serves: 4 servings
Calories 421kcal (21%)Carbohydrates 7g (2%)Protein 33g (66%)Fat 29g (45%)Saturated Fat 14g (70%)Polyunsaturated Fat 1gMonounsaturated Fat 7gTrans Fat 0.01gCholesterol 140mg (47%)Sodium 1487mg (62%)Potassium 568mg (16%)Fiber 1g (4%)Sugar 3g (3%)Vitamin A 1926IU (39%)Vitamin C 12mg (15%)Calcium 207mg (21%)Iron 1mg (6%)

Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000-calorie diet. All nutritional information is based on estimated third-party calculations. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands you use, measuring methods, and portion sizes per household.

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Jessica Gavin

I'm a culinary school graduate, cookbook author, and a mom who loves croissants! My passion is creating recipes and sharing the science behind cooking to help you gain confidence in the kitchen.

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3 Comments Leave a comment or review

  1. Valerie C. says

    I made this last night for dinner, the only thing I did differently was to bread the chicken after stuffing, drizzled with evoo then baked. It turned out perfectly!

    • Jessica Gavin says

      Wow! Breading the chicken is an amazing idea, I must try that. Thrilled to hear that you enjoyed the chicken recipe.