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Healthy Chicken Cordon Bleu

Introduction & method

Normally, chicken cordon bleu is a whole chicken breast, crumbed and deep-fried. There'll be a tiny amount of ham and cheese stuffed inside. It's hard to get excited about. But this version of chicken cordon bleu has the chicken flattened and rolled into a sausage with a generous amount of ham and Swiss cheese. The whole thing is baked in the oven and it is wonderful.

Healthy Chicken Cordon Bleu Recipe

Prep the Chicken

Trim any little bits of fat or sinew from the chicken. Carefully slice it horizontally. Open the chicken breast out like a butterfly, then cut along the long joint. Take one half of the chicken breast and place it on a sheet of plastic film. Moisten the top of the breast with a little water, then place another sheet of film over it. Using a meat mallet, heavy spatula or rolling pin, tap the chicken repeatedly until it is 2-3mm thick.

Assemble the Chicken Cordon Bleus

Take one flattened half chicken breast and remove the top film. Thinly spread Dijon mustard over the chicken. Lay a slice of ham on the chicken, trimming the edges if necessary so that you have a narrow margin all round. Lay a slice of cheese over the ham and lift up the film at the sides, top and bottom so that you can fold the chicken over and get nice straight edges. Pick up the short edge nearest you and roll the chicken tightly. Be careful not to catch your film in the roll. Twizzle the ends of the film and put the roll in the fridge to rest for 30 minutes. 

Breadcrumb the Cordon Bleus

Arrange three side plates or shallow bowls in a row. Spread out the flour on the first one, beaten egg in the middle one, and breadcrumbs on the last one. Unwrap one chicken roll (keep the film for re-use) and coat it evenly in flour, egg and crumbs. Repeat for the other three rolls. Wrap each one in film again and return to the fridge for another 30 minutes.

Cook the Chicken Cordon Bleus

Heat your oven to 200°C (392°F) fan, 220°C (428°F) conventional, gas 7. In a frying pan on medium heat, melt the butter into the oil. Place chicken rolls into the pan - don't crowd it, and consider cooking these in batches if the pan is not big. Turn them every minute or so until the breadcrumbs are golden all over. Don't forget the ends. The rolls need to be fried for 3-4 minutes and then baked for a further 10 minutes. You can either put the pan with the rolls into the oven, or if your frying pan is unsuitable for oven use, transfer the rolls to a small roasting tin.

Serve the Chicken Cordon Bleus

These are best eaten hot, while the cheese is still molten. Sprinkle with lemon zest, a scattering of flat leaf parsley and a drizzle of lemon juice. Serve with salad and new potatoes, and maybe a creamy mustard sauce.

The video above is from the Keef Cooks YouTube channel. Click here to see the video recipe of Healthy Chicken Cordon Bleu on YouTube.


Ingredients & Info

 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts
 4 slices good quality ham
 4 slices Emmental or Gruyère cheese
 250 grams plain (all-purpose) flour
 2 beaten eggs
 250 grams fine white breadcrumbs
 a scraping of Dijon mustard


About 2 tablespoons of oil and butter to sauté the rolls. To garnish, juice and zest of 1 lemon. Small handful flatleaf parsley, chopped.

US Customary/Imperial

Serves 4 
Prep time: 15 minutes.
Resting time: 1 hour.
Cooking time: 15 minutes.
Total time: 1 hour 30 minutes.