Chicken involtini, or chicken braciole, look and taste complex, but are really quite simple. Chicken breasts are pounded thin and rolled around a sauteed spinach, mushroom, and fontina cheese mixture, lightly seared, and finished in a lemon white wine sauce. A go-to dish for when you want a beautiful presentation, but don't want to jump through hoops to create it.
This chicken involtini recipe has quickly become a favorite way to eat chicken in our home and was inspired by beef braciole, a dish I grew up eating as part of our family's Sunday dinner.
Involtini with chicken are a bit simpler and don't require hours of cooking in a Sunday sauce.
In fact, from start to finish, it takes less than an hour to prepare.
Chicken involtini are essentially chicken rolled around a mixture of ingredients. This recipe combines sauteed spinach, mushrooms, and fontina cheese for the stuffing.
The garlicky sauteed spinach, earthy mushrooms, and melted fontina cheese make the perfect filling for these chicken involti.
Perfect served alongside roasted potatoes, rice, or even more sauteed spinach and sauteed garlic mushrooms, this dish is a hit with even the pickiest eaters!
Pro tip: Make large portions of both the spinach and mushrooms linked above and save them for when you make this recipe. That will cut down on some prep and cooking time and make the process far easier!
How to make it
Each number corresponds to the numbered written steps below.
- In a large pan saute the garlic in olive oil over medium-low heat until golden (about 2 minutes) then add the spinach. Cook spinach until wilted and season with salt and pepper. Remove spinach from heat and set aside. Once the spinach is cool enough to handle, drain by pressing through a fine-mesh strainer. Chop the spinach and set it aside.
- Heat the same pan to medium and saute the mushrooms in olive oil until they release their water (about 5 minutes). Season the mushrooms with salt and pepper and set them aside.
- In a large bowl, mix together the drained spinach, mushrooms, 1 cup shredded Fontina cheese, and a ¼ cup of breadcrumbs. Also, preheat the oven to 375f.
- Spread out 8-10 thin chicken cutlets (use either storebought thin sliced cutlets or pound them out to a ¼-inch thickness) and pat them dry. Season both sides with salt and pepper then place 2-3 tablespoons of the spinach mixture onto the cutlets.
- Roll the chicken then secure with a toothpick. Next place the chicken involtini into flour and dredge, shaking off the excess. Note: Don't worry - most of the stuffing will stay inside the chicken while searing after securing with the toothpicks.
- Heat a large pan (preferably stainless steel) to medium heat and wait 3 minutes. Once the pan is hot add a couple of tablespoons of olive oil and sear the chicken for 2-3 minutes per side or until golden brown. Work in batches, if required, to not crowd the pan. Place all the seared chicken onto a plate and set aside.
- Turn the heat down to medium-low and add 4 cloves of sliced garlic. If the pan is very dry add a couple more tablespoons of olive oil. Cook the garlic until golden (about 2 minutes) then add a ½ cup of dry white wine and a ½ cup of low sodium chicken stock. Turn the heat to high and reduce the liquid by half (about 2-3 minutes). While reducing, use a wooden spoon to dislodge the flavorful brown bits from the pan.
- Once the sauce is adequately reduced remove the pan from the heat and taste test. Season with salt and pepper if necessary - it probably won't be - then add 2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice.
- Return the chicken rolls to the pan and add 2 tablespoons of cubed butter. Also, spoon a bit of sauce onto the chicken then sprinkle the remaining breadcrumbs on top of each piece of chicken involtini. You don't have to use all the breadcrumbs here. Just a thin coating will suffice.
- Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the internal temp of the chicken reaches 160f. Once finished cooking remove the pan from the oven and add 2 tablespoons of minced parsley. If you want the sauce a bit thicker simply move the chicken to a plate and tent with foil. Heat the sauce over medium-high for a few minutes until it reduces then turn off the heat and add 1-2 tablespoons of cold butter and whisk it into the sauce. Enjoy!
Top tips for perfect chicken rollups aka involtini
- The chicken. Good involtini doesn't just have a delicious stuffing - the chicken should also be moist and tender. To accomplish this, pound the cutlets to ¼ inch thick. This will tenderize the meat and will further thin the cutlets making them easier to roll.
- The cheese. I used fontina cheese for this recipe because I love the slightly pungent flavor and fontina's ability to melt. If you can't find fontina, you could substitute with mozzarella, provolone, or even swiss.
- The wine. I used a Sauvignon Blanc for my sauce, but any dry white wine will work. Pinot Grigio would be another good choice. If you prefer to not use wine, simply substitute with an extra ½ of low sodium chicken stock.
- Tying it all together. I used toothpicks to secure the chicken, however, if you'd like you can also use kitchen twine. Either way, don't forget to remove the toothpicks or twine before eating!
More great chicken recipes
Chicken is such a versatile ingredient and is the perfect base for a variety of flavors and ingredients. Here are some of our favorite chicken dishes - we know you'll love them!
- Chicken Saltimbocca - Pan-seared chicken cutlets layered with prosciutto and sage in a buttery white wine sauce.
- Creamy sun dried tomato chicken - Ultra-thin chicken cutlets cooked in a creamy sauce with spinach, sun dried tomatoes, and white wine.
- Chicken Marsala - Chicken cutlets with smoked prosciutto and mushrooms in a Marsala wine sauce.
- Chicken Sorrentino - Cutlets layered with prosciutto, eggplant, and fontina cheese in a wine-infused tomato sauce.
- Chicken with tomatoes and capers - Cherry tomatoes, capers, parsley, and chicken cutlets.
- Chicken Valdostana - Fontina cheese, prosciutto, and chicken cutlets in a simple white wine sauce.
- Chicken piccata - Chicken, lemon, and capers in an EASY buttery sauce.
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For the sauteed spinach
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 8 ounces spinach
- salt and pepper to taste
For the sauteed mushrooms
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- ½ pound mushrooms diced
- salt and pepper to taste
- 8 large chicken cutlets pounded ¼ thick, about 2 pounds of chicken
- salt and pepper to taste
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 4 cloves garlic sliced
- ½ cup flour for dredging
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- ½ cup dry white wine
- ½ cup low sodium chicken stock
- 1 cup fontina cheese shredded
- ½ cup Italian seasoned breadcrumbs divided
- 2 tablespoons butter cubed
- 2 tablespoons Italian parsley minced
For the sauteed spinach
- In a large pan saute the garlic in olive oil over medium-low heat until golden (about 2 minutes) then add the spinach. Cook spinach until wilted and season with salt and pepper. Remove spinach from heat and set aside.
- Once the spinach is cool enough to handle, drain by pressing through a fine-mesh strainer. Chop the spinach and set it aside.
For the sauteed mushrooms
- Heat a large pan to medium heat and saute the mushrooms in olive oil until they release their water (about 5 minutes).
- Season the mushrooms with salt and pepper and set aside.
For the chicken involtini
- Preheat oven to 375f.
- Drain any residual moisture from the mushrooms and spinach and place into a bowl along with the fontina cheese and a ¼ cup of breadcrumbs.
- Season the chicken with salt and pepper on both sides. Layer 2-3 tablespoons of the filling in the center of the chicken. Roll the chicken then dredge in flour and shake off the excess. Secure the chicken with toothpicks. Repeat for remaining chicken. Any extra stuffing can be saved for another purpose.
- Heat a large oven-safe pan to medium. Once hot, add the olive oil and the chicken. Sear the chicken until brown on all sides (around 2 minutes per side) then move to a plate.
- Add the garlic to the pan and saute until golden (about 2 minutes) then add the wine and chicken stock. Turn heat to high and with a wooden spoon remove the brown bits. Cook for 2 minutes or until reduced by about half. Taste the sauce and adjust salt and pepper to taste.
- Remove the pan from the burner and add the chicken to the pan. Sprinkle the chicken with the remaining breadcrumbs and add the lemon juice and butter pieces into the sauce. Bake for 12-15 minutes or until the chicken reaches an internal temp of 160f.
- After removing the chicken involtini from the oven, add the parsley to the sauce. Let the chicken rest for 5-10 minutes before removing the toothpicks and serving. Enjoy!
- The chicken can be tied with string instead of using toothpicks.
- If the sauce is too thin move the chicken to a plate and just cook the sauce over medium-high for a few minutes to reduce and thicken. You can also add another knob of cold butter and whisk in before serving to emulsify the sauce.
- Extra stuffing can be saved in the fridge for up to 3 days and should be heated before consuming due to it being used for raw chicken.
- Leftovers can be saved for up to 3 days in the fridge and can be reheated until warm on the stovetop.
May I use a different cheese perhaps? Made many of your recipes. Keep up the great videos
Hi Sue. You can use any soft cheese you like. Mozzarella, soft provolone, or swiss would all work well. Enjoy!
Perfect dish, looking forward to trying it.
Thanks, Nancy. Hope you enjoy it.
Love your recipes! Your son is so cute. Can the chicken rolls be frozen and then make the sauce and cook later? I try to make a lot of dishes in advance.
Thanks, Nancy! You can definitely freeze them in advance. I would thaw the night before when you're ready for a meal, though you could probably cook them frozen with a bit more cooking time. Hope you enjoy the recipe.
Did you think these can be made in an air fryer
Hi Marlene. They definitely can be made in an air fryer. Hope you enjoy the recipe.
Just got through our first iteration of involtini. Smells good, tastes good, is good! Thank you!
Hi Ivy. Glad you enjoyed it!
I just want to thank you for all the wonderful recipes you’ve shared. I’ve tried a few of your recipes and they all came out great! Again, thank you so much!
Thanks so much, Joy!
Made this tonight for the family and everyone loved it! Thank you I will be making this again
Thank you, Tony! So happy you all liked it!
Can you freeze any leftover filling?
Hi Chris, yes, you can freeze the leftover filling.
What would you recommend as a side dish for this?
Hi Henri, within the recipe post we mention this would be perfect with roasted potatoes, sauteed spinach, sauteed mushrooms, or rice and we also link to some of those recipes as well.
Ah, thank you. Maybe I shouldn't be reading these in the middle of the night so I wouldn't ask silly questions like these. But thank you for your answer and for many great recipes.
Hi Henri, no problem at all! Thank you for making my recipes!
Looks absolutely delicious! Making it this weekend September 24. Going to serve it with your crispy roasted potatoes!😊
Thank you, Cindy. I hope you enjoy both recipes!
I will make that because it is not to complicated 🌺
Thanks, Joann. I hope you enjoy it!
I am not the cook in my house, but wanted to surprise my loved one, and it turned out perfectly! We have been watching your videos for a little bit and this is just the first of many we will make. Thank you for sharing such a wonderful recipe!
Hi Jenny, thank you for the comment! So glad to hear you enjoyed this one!
Wow! Another win. This was elegant, easy and will be on my next entertaining menu. Yum!!!
Hi Jennifer, thanks for the comment and I'm so happy you liked the involtini!
Looks Devine! Am anxious to make this per your recipe. Thanks for sharing.
Jim, I am not known for my culinary skills, of which I have very few. But this recipe looked easy enough for even me to attempt. I will surprise my family tonight and will let you know if they survived.
Hi Marion, I'm sure you'll do wonderfully and hope you enjoy!
All your recipes have been wonderful and delicious. Plus very keto adaptable..
Hi Lynn, I'm so happy you're enjoying the recipes and appreciate the comment!
Looks delicious and simple..thank you…
Thanks for the comment, Camille, and hope you enjoy!
Excellent! I like this because it’s different than the usual baked or fried chicken. Reminds me of my Italian mom.
Jim, you have the best recipes! 🥰
Hi Bev, thanks so much for the comment and so happy you're enjoying the recipes!
I had this for dinner last night and it did not disappoint. Looking forward to trying more
Hi Pamela, thanks for the comment and so happy you enjoyed the recipe!
We just finished making/enjoying this, subbing red peppers for mushrooms. Ah-mazing! Thank you for the recipe and easy to follow video!
Hi Katie, thanks for the comment and so happy you enjoyed!
I make this dish all the time as well as most of your dishes, my family loves them, keep them coming, thanks
Hi Camillo, so happy you enjoyed this one and appreciate the comment!
Hi Jim, can the involtini be made in advance, like the day before, kept in the fridge overnight and cooked the next day? Or are they best made and cooked on the same day?
Hi Anita, yes, you can make these a day in advance, store in the fridge, and cook the next day.
We love all your recipes, Jim, and this was one of our favorites so far. I used Smoked Gouda instead of Fontina, because that’s what I had on hand, and it was WOW.
Hi Michele, I'm so happy you enjoyed this one. Smoked gouda sounds like a fantastic substitution!
Love your recipes.
Hi Marie, so happy you enjoyed this one and really appreciate the comment!
Hi Miriam, thanks for the comment and so happy you enjoyed it!
Jim, this wonderful recipe found me on my birthday, so I’ll take it as a birthday present. Thanks for your thoughtfulness.
Hi Tom, Happy birthday to you and so happy you enjoyed the recipe!