Cheesy Chicken Roll-Ups with Lemon Risotto

I’m starting to finally get the hang out of building multiple meals using the same ingredients. For so long I’ve just made a list of meals to make, completely different from each other, purchased all of my groceries and ended up wasting most of the leftover ingredients. After re-evaluating how much money I was throwing in the garbage I’ve really tried to focus on pulling my meals together better. This weekend was the perfect time to put this new practice to use. Here are the results! 🙂

Friday Night Dinner:

White Pizzas with Arugula by Ina Garten

This recipe was absolutely delicious! I cut the recipe down a bit so I had plenty of leftover ingredients for another meal. I cooked the pizza a minute or two too long but the crust was crispy and the cheese was gooey and scrumptious. The arugula salad on top really tied everything together. Add a Caesar salad (yes I know more greens…but it’s too good to resist) and a glass of Sauvignon Blanc and you’ve got the perfect meal.

Saturday Night Dinner:

Today was one of those perfect lazy Saturdays. When it came time to start thinking about dinner I didn’t have the energy to go back to the grocery store, and facing the busy restaurant crowds didn’t sound appealing at all. So, I opened the pantry and got to thinking. I had some leftover cheese, arugula, and lemon vinaigrette from the night before, a bag of frozen chicken, fresh thyme, a container of Arborio rice, and a little bit of white wine left. After some creative thought, along with a little help from Food Network, this is what I came up with.

Cheesy Chicken Roll-Ups with Lemon Risotto

*Disclaimer – these are not precise measurements (except for the risotto)

RisottoRecipe courtesy of Giada De Laurentiis, with a few minor changes

  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 small onion, diced
  • 1 cup Arborio rice
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1 tsp thyme, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan
  • 2 tablespoons mascarpone cheese
  • 1/2 a lemon, juiced
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


  • 2 chicken breasts, sliced horizontally in half
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp thyme, finely chopped
  • fontina, shredded (leftover from the night before)
  • goat cheese, crumbled (leftover from the night before)
  • 1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 small onion, chopped
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock

Arugula Salad

  • 1 cup baby arugula
  • 1/2 cup good olive oil
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 lemon, sliced

To  prep the chicken, cut each breast horizontally in half to form two cutlets. Sprinkle each cutlet evenly with the salt, pepper, and thyme. Sprinkle each cutlet with an even layer of Fontina and crumbled goat cheese. Carefully roll up the chicken, end to end, and secure with a toothpick (two per cutlet). Put chicken roll-ups in a covered dish and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

In a medium saucepan bring the broth and 1/2 cup water to a simmer. Cover the broth and keep hot over low heat.In a medium, heavy saucepan, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter over medium heat. Add the onion and saute until tender but not brown, about 3 minutes.

Add the rice and stir to coat with the butter. Add the wine and simmer until the wine has almost completely evaporated, about 3 minutes. Add 1/2 cup of the simmering broth and stir until almost completely absorbed, about 2 minutes.

Continue cooking the rice, adding the broth 1/2 cup at a time, stirring constantly and allowing each addition of the broth to absorb before adding the next, until the rice is tender but still firm to the bite and the mixture is creamy, about 20 minutes. Add the chopped thyme about halfway through the cooking process.

Remove from the heat. Stir in the 2 tablespoons of Parmesan, mascarpone cheese, the lemon juice, and the salt and pepper.While you’re adding the liquid to the rice heat the tablespoon of oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat.

Brown the chicken for two minutes on each side, remove from the pan and set aside. Saute the onions until soft, about 3 minutes, then add the garlic. Deglaze the pan with the chicken stock, making sure to scrape up the brown bits from the pan, add the chicken back to the pan. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cover. Cook for about 8-10 minutes until the chicken is cooked through.

In a large bowl drizzle the arugula with the vinaigrette until evenly coated.

To plate, place one cup of risotto on the middle of the plate and top with the arugula. Remove the toothpicks from the chicken and put two chicken roll-ups on top of the arugula. Using a slotted spoon sprinkle the onions from the pan on top of the chicken.

I really loved this dish. The risotto was so creamy and delicious and the arugula really added some delicious flavor to the chicken. Try this out, I will be making this again for sure!

Bon Appetit!

Frank Sinatra: I am in a throw-back mood tonight and Sinatra seems like the perfect music pairing. I never get sick of Sinatra’s voice and his music sets the perfect stage for a lovely dinner for two. Sit back, relax, and let Ole’ Blue Eyes take you back.

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