Prep 15 mins
Cook 40 mins
Recipe for juicy chicken with cheese and tomato melted on top.
- 1 cup reduced-fat ricotta cheese
- 1⁄2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1⁄4 teaspoon salt
- 1⁄4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 4 boneless skinless chicken breast halves
- 1⁄2 tablespoon garlic powder
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 cup crushed tomatoes
- 4 slices reduced-fat mozzarella cheese
- Combine the ricotta with the oregano, salt, and pepper. Blend together.
- Pretreat a large baking dish with PAM or rub the bottom with some olive oil so it doesn't stick.
- Rub the chicken with the garlic powder. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and cook for 10 minutes per side. You'll be tempted to move the chicken around but don't for at least 7 minutes, then check to see that it's not burning. Turn it over and do the same on the other side. Place the chicken breasts, side by side, in a lorge baking dish and allow to cool.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- Spoon 1/4 cup of the cheese mixture and 1/4 cup tomatoes onto each chicken breast. You can be liberal. Top each chicken breast with 1 slice mozzarella. Bake for 20 minutes, or until a thermometer inserted in the chicken registers 170°F.
This is a family favorite and an easy weeknight meal! I do make a couple of adjustments based on my family's preferences. I peel and slice an eggplant to 1/4 inch slices, spray with olive oil, and bake it in the oven at 350 until soft. I then use those slices as the bottom layer in the casserole. I cook the chicken as the recipe states, but definitely adjust the cooking time so that the chicken is still tender when it comes out of the pan. It tends to cook a little more in the oven, and overcooking it in the pan makes it very hard and dry. I place the chicken on top of the eggplant, and then spoon the ricotta mixture on top (we use fat free ricotta - can't really taste a difference). Finally, I pour the tomatoes (I use Italian-style for a more distinct flavor) on and top with shredded mozzarella. YUM!
We really loved this chicken. I was a little freaked out by the comments about dried-out chicken, so I didn't cook the chicken for 10 minutes on each side...and ended up having to spend more time cooking it in the oven. It wasn't quite done at 20 minutes, and I think it would have benefited from additional saute time. The only other modifications were adding a little dried basil to the ricotta, using a can of crushed tomatoes (slightly drained), and shredded mozzarella. I will definitely make this again!
This chicken is the best! My family loves it and it's so easy to make. I think you have to adjust the cooking time based on how thick your chicken is. I've made this half a dozen times and it was never dried out.