Provolone and prosciutto chicken rollatini is a mouthful to say but way easier to make. Plus, you get tired of plain old baked chicken and this version bakes up gooey, cheesy and crispy right from the oven. Perfect to make ahead and bake the next day, or a few hours later. You’re going to love it.
You can do chicken a lot of ways, but we get tired of a lot of those and need something fresh to add to our menu rotation. I had my eye on Skinnytaste’s version of this and thought it was the perfect way to help you get a chicken dish on the table that was better than the drive through at Lee’s Famous Recipe.
What is a chicken rollatini?
Chicken rollatini is an Italian-style dish featuring tender, breaded chicken wrapped around a filling (in this case provolone cheese and prosciutto).
The chicken is often pounded to even thickness before breading, stuffing, and baking. Rollatini can also be made using other meats and fillings but this one is my favorite.
Ingredients you’ll need:
Can I use a different cut of chicken?
I used breasts here but you could also use chicken thighs if you pound them to even thickness and keep the filling relatively light.
If the thighs are on the larger side, I suggest splitting them horizontally.
Sick of chicken? You could easily use turkey cutlets in place of chicken here.
I love a simple provolone, prosciutto, and basil filling but the world is your oyster. Here are some other fun ideas to inspire you.
- Add spinach. Thaw and thoroughly squeeze frozen spinach and add it to the filling.
- Meat options. Try thin slices of ham instead of prosciutto. Other smoked or cured meats would work as well.
- Play with cheese. I used provolone here but mozzarella or parmesan would work beautifully as well. Try goat cheese or blue cheese for a unique twist.
- Pesto and other spreads. Use pesto instead of fresh basil for added richness. You could even make your own. Feeling adventurous? Try sun dried tomato pesto or olive tapenade.
How to make chicken rollatini/stuffed chicken breasts
Step 1: Dredge chicken breasts in lemon juice and olive oil then into panko and parmesan cheese.
Step 2: Lay breaded breasts flat and add prosciutto, cheese, and pesto or basil on top.
Step 3: Roll up and place on a parchment lined cookie sheet seam side down.
Tips for success
You didn’t think I’d leave you without a few tips and tricks, did you? Not a chance. Here are some pointers on how to make the best chicken rollatini you’ve ever tasted.
- Don’t over-stuff. The excess filling will ooze out of the rollatini, making a mess. Plus, you might run out of filling before stuffing your last chicken cutlets.
- Avoid wet fillings. Ingredients that have a lot of moisture in them, such as fresh mushrooms and fresh veggies, will release that moisture during the cooking process, causing a soggy, leaky rollatini.
- Season mindfully. Make sure to season the chicken with salt in pepper. Do keep in mind that, if you are using prosciutto, it will add a lot of salt to the dish. So be careful not to over-salt.
- Use Panko if you can. If your body tolerates gluten, use Panko. Homemade bread crumbs and gluten-free breadcrumbs will work as well but Panko really does yield the crispiest, crunchiest outcome.
- Don’t overcook the chicken. Unless you want dry rollatini, pay close attention to the chicken as it bakes so you don’t overcook it. I suggest using a meat thermometer. Once the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 165 degrees F, remove it from the oven.
- Let it rest. Allow the chicken to rest for 5-10 minutes before serving. This will give the juices a chance to sink into every inch of the meat, leaving you with a more succulent, flavorful entree.
Swaps for bold flavor
The great thing about this recipe is its flexibility. You know that’s my thing–recipes you can adjust and don’t flop if you make a swap here and there and this is one of them. Some adjustments you could make to your chicken rollatini include:
- Change the herbs. Use thyme, tarragon or parsley inside yours. You could even add different dried herbs to the bread crumb mixture.
- Swap the provolone for pepper jack or (my favorite) a really spicy habanero jack. Boars Head makes one I love.
- Swap the prosciutto for shaved ham. This was my first time using prosciutto and it’s just a super thin Italian ham–it’s salty so watch how much you season your chicken–but man it’s good. The edges of it get all crispy as they bake. If you can’t find prosciutto for your chicken rollatini, a little ham would work.
- Add a sauce. A pasta sauce would work on top if you feel like you need that. Personally, I think it’s too much and as long as you don’t over cook your chicken, the meat will be nice and juicy all on its own.
How to freeze chicken rollatini
In the market for an elegant make-ahead meal? This is it. Follow this recipe almost to completion but, instead of baking, place the uncooked rollatini in a freezer-friendly pan (I like Pyrex).
Pop them in the fridge for a couple of hours to chill before wrapping the pan in plastic wrap and a double layer of aluminum foil.
Store the rollatini in the refrigerator for up to 3 months. When you are ready to enjoy, allow the rollatini to thaw in the refrigerator for 24 hours before baking as you normally would.
What to serve with chicken rollatini
This Italian-inspired entree plays beautifully with a variety of side dishes. Here are some of my favorite things to serve alongside homemade chicken rollatini.
- Vegetables. Roast them, steam them, or serve them fresh. Try my Easy Roasted Radishes, a handful of steamed broccoli, or sliced heirloom tomatoes in a light balsamic dressing.
- Starches. It seems fitting to serve Italian-style chicken with pasta, doesn’t it? Try my Creamy Fettuccine Alfredo So Easy You’ll Be Shocked, this Quick Baked Ziti, or this light Rotini pasta salad with mozzarella and tomatoes. Not in a pasta mood? Consider a creamy polenta, risotto, or herbed couscous.
- Salad. Serve over a bed of greens with a light dressing of balsamic vinegar and olive oil. You could also serve chicken rollatini with my Pear Salad with Gorgonzola and Walnuts or this Homemade Caesar Salad.
Provolone and Prosciutto Chicken Rollatini
- 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts or chicken cutlets
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 cup parmesan cheese
- 2 1/2 cups panko bread crumbs
- 1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 3 ounces prosciutto
- 6 slices provolone cheese about 1/2 pound
- 1/3 cup freshly chopped basil, pesto or basil paste in a tube
- Preheat the oven to 400.
- If using regular chicken breasts, cut them in half horizontally through the thickest part. Place each half between two pieces of plastic wrap and flatten the chicken with a heavy object like a cast iron skillet. Repeat with all of the chicken.
- In a medium bowl, add the olive oil and lemon juice. In a second bowl, add the parmesan cheese, bread crumbs, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper and stir to combine.
- Dip the chicken in the olive oil and lemon juice on both sides and then into the bread crumb mixture on both sides.
- Lay a half slice of provolone and one slice of prosciutto on the widest side of the chicken. Add one fresh basil leaf, or a teaspoon of basil paste/pesto if using that.
- Roll up, starting at the end with the fillings and roll toward the narrow end of the chicken.
- Place the rolled chicken on a greased cookie sheet or in a cast iron skillet. Spray generously with olive oil spray or drizzle with olive oil and bake until cooked through and golden 25 to 30 minutes.