Our air fryer stuffed chicken breast recipe creates a fancy meal in just 30 minutes. The meat is juicy, and the filling is satisfyingly creamy, but above all, it’s good for your health.
Is Stuffed Chicken Breast Good for You?
Our chicken breasts are stuffed with cheese, spinach, and pistachios. This combination brings to the meal flavors, textures, and also important nutrients. There are proteins from chicken and cheese, some vitamin C, iron, fiber, and antioxidants from spinach, and vitamin B6 from pistachios.
We adjusted the ingredient ratios to ensure that the meal retained its flavor and the macronutrients remained within their acceptable ranges. Each serving of our stuffed chicken breast now contains:
- 481 calories
- 10.3 g saturated fat
- 551 mg sodium
Ingredients for Stuffed Chicken Breast
Our air fryer stuffed chicken breast recipe is made with chicken breasts, cheese, spinach, pistachios, milk, and a few seasonings. It has the potential to be a heavy meal, so we lighten things up by adding some crisp vegetables on the side.
We typically pick skin-on chicken breasts because roasted chicken skin is the best-tasting part of the breast. Keeping the skin also helps the meat retain moisture and flavor better.
If you’re looking for a leaner option, you can use skinless breasts, or remove the skin for snacking later. We air-fried some at 400°F for 15 minutes for a crispy treat.
Also, when it comes to dealing with chicken breasts, we like to butterfly each one. This creates more space for the seasonings to cling onto, and in this case, for the filling to go to.
- Spinach-Cheese Filling
To turn the spinach into a filling, we blanched it briefly in hot water, shocked it in cold water, and cut it into small pieces. This vegetable shrinks a lot when cooked, so you can use more of it.
Cream cheese is a typical choice for stuffed chicken thanks to its soft, pliable nature. Besides cream cheese, we also incorporated some parmesan for an added depth of savoriness.
To increase the volume of the filling without piling on the saturated fat content, we mixed in some whole milk. This also helps soften the filling, and we prefer it this way.
Finally, we added nuts for more texture, pistachios being our nuts of choice. You can easily replace them with chopped almonds, walnuts, sunflower seeds, etc., if you prefer.
The spices we use are paprika, cayenne, onion powder, garlic powder, salt, black pepper, and red pepper flakes. You can increase or decrease the hot spices as you wish — our version tastes pretty mild in terms of heat.
We like to serve our stuffed chicken with lettuce and julienned carrots. You can add more crisp veggies to this mix, like radish, cucumber, bell pepper, etc. It’s always a good thing to include more veggies in your meals!
How to Make Stuffed Chicken Breast in an Air Fryer
Our air fryer stuffed chicken breast recipe needs 30 minutes — 10 for prepping the chicken, and the other 20 for cooking:
Butterfly the chicken breast.
Season the chicken breast.
Prepare the spinach.
Make the spinach filling.
Stuff the chicken.
Cook in the air fryer at 400°F for 20 minutes. Sprinkle chopped parsley on top.
Enjoy with vegetables.
To save time, you can put a pot of water on high heat before dealing with the chicken. It should be at a rolling boil once you’ve finished butterflying the chicken breasts.
Tips for Making Stuffed Chicken
As the process involves cutting the meat, working with fresh chicken is a lot easier than frozen chicken. If frozen is your only choice, there’s a neat trick to thawing it in just 30 minutes:
First, wrap the frozen meat tightly with plastic wrap and place it into a bowl in the sink. Let the tap water flow slowly into the bowl, creating a constantly changing pool of closer to room-temp water.
After 30 minutes, the meat should be partially thawed and pliable. It should not be left to come to room temperature, because bacteria present on the meat can multiply more rapidly and spoil it.
How Long to Cook Stuffed Chicken Breasts
At room temperature, stuffed chicken breasts will need 20 minutes at 400°F in the air fryer, stuffed or not. Large, thick pieces of frozen meat don’t cook evenly, so we always recommend thawing first.
How to Store and Reheat Leftovers
The leftovers can last for up to 5 days in the fridge. We advise against freezing them as the cream cheese filling doesn’t thaw well.
You can place them all into an air-tight container or wrap individual stuffed chicken breasts with plastic wrap. Individual wrapping can be especially good if your fridge is a bit crowded.
To reheat, air-fry once again at 400°F for 7 minutes.
Side Dishes for Stuffed Chicken Breast
In addition to the lettuce and carrots, we believe the chicken needs some carbs. We found our potato wedges to be a delicious candidate — fluffy, tender, delicious.
To round the meal off nicely, we served it all with some chilled lemon watermelon juice.
Air Fryer Stuffed Chicken Breast Recipe
This air fryer stuffed chicken breast recipe makes delicious chicken breasts stuffed with a flavorful, creamy cheese-spinach filling in just 30 minutes.
- cook TIME 20 mins
- prep TIME 10 mins
- total TIME 30 mins
- COURSE Main Course
- CUISINE American
- SERVINGS servings
- CALORIES 484 kcal
- 26 ozskinless boneless chicken breasts (4 medium-sized)
- 2.5 tbspolive oil
- 1 tsppaprika
- 0.5 tspcayenne
- 0.5 tsponion powder
- 2 ozspinach
- 4.5 ozcream cheese
- 0.3 cupwhole milk
- 1 ozpistachios
- 0.3 ozshredded parmesan cheese
- 0.5 tspgarlic powder
- 0.5 tspred pepper flakes
- 0.5 tspsalt
- 0.5 tspground black pepper
- 2 tbspparsley (chopped)
- 6 ozlettuce (half red, and half green)
- 0.5 ozcarrot (cut into matchsticks)
Fill a pot halfway with water and heat over medium heat. Meanwhile, butterfly the chicken breasts (26 oz in total).
Place them in a bowl along with 2 1/2 tbsp olive oil, 1 tsp paprika, 1/2 tsp cayenne, and 1/2 tsp onion powder. Rub the meat to season it thoroughly, then leave to marinate.
As the water comes to a boil, add to it 2 oz spinach to cook for 1 minute. Fish the cooked spinach out and place it into a bowl of ice water. Squeeze it dry and chopped.
In a bowl, combine the cooked spinach with 4.55 oz cream cheese, 1/4 cup whole milk, 1 oz pistachios, 0.25 oz parmesan cheese, 1/2 tsp garlic powder, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes, and 1/2 tsp ground black pepper.
Fill the butterflied chicken with this spinach-cheese mixture.
Cook in the air fryer at 400°F for 20 minutes. Sprinkle chopped parsley on top
Enjoy with lettuce and carrots.