Special Diet Information

Coumadin® (Warfarin)
This recipe is safe for Coumadin (warfarin) users.

This recipe contains cheese and some of those who are lactose intolerant may be able to tolerate it.

This is NOT a low sodium recipe.

GERD / Acid Reflux
This recipe contains GERD triggers and those with GERD may wish to avoid it.

Gluten Sensitivity
This recipe is safe for those who are sensitive to gluten.


"I believe that if ever I had to practice cannibalism, I might manage if there were enough tarragon around." -James Beard

The refrigerator light goes on...

This is another classic French preparation. The variations are endless, with versions that include the chicken being stuffed with minced chicken, mushrooms, other vegetables, sausage, etc.. The technique is the same and your imagination is the only thing holding you back.

It is easier than you might think to master pounding the chicken breasts so that they are thin. Using a meat mallet is ideal, but a small sauce pan will also work, and the key is to go slowly and start at the center, pounding with moderate force so that the meat flattens and moves toward the outer part of the plastic wrap.

Chilling the ballotine helps it retain its form better when you are starting the initial step of cooking. You can prepare these well in advance and keep them in the refrigerator until it's time to cook them in the water, making this a perfect dish for your next dinner party.


Chicken Ballotine with Leek and Pistachio

Servings: 2 | Serving size: 1 stuffed chicken breast

Cooking time: 60 minutes (does not include chilling time)

This recipe can easily be multiplied and makes good leftovers, especially cold.

Serve with Fondant Potatoes or Plain Mashed Potatoes | Low Sodium Plain Mashed Potatoes and Sauteed Leeks (use the extra green parts of the leek from this recipe) or Sauteed Spinach with Roasted Garlic or Parmesan Zucchini.

Chicken Ballotine with Leek and Pistachio recipe from Dr. Gourmet


  • 3 tsp. olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic (minced)
  • 1 small leek, white part only (thinly sliced crosswise)(save the green parts of the leek for another recipe)
  • 1 ounce goat cheese
  • 1 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • 1/8 tsp. dried tarragon
  • 2 Tbsp. shelled pistachios (raw and unsalted; coarsely chopped)
  • 2 - 4 ounce chicken breasts
  • 2 ounces prosciutto or other thinly sliced cured ham
  • 2 quarts water

Place 1 teaspoon of the olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat.

Add the garlic and cook for about 1 minute.

Add the white part of the leek.

Cook for about 10 minutes until the leek has softened.

Remove from the heat and let cool slightly.

Place the leek and garlic mixture in a blender or food processor.

Add the goat cheese, mustard, and tarragon. Process until smooth.

Remove to a bowl and fold in the pistachios until blended.

Place in the refrigerator and chill thoroughly.

Place each chicken breast between two sheets of plastic wrap.

Pound lightly with a meat mallet or the bottom of a small sauce pan until the chicken breast is about 1/8 inch thick.

Remove one side of the plastic wrap and place the slices of prosciutto on the chicken breast, starting at the center with the ham covering only half of the chicken breast, and the other half of the ham overlapping onto the plastic wrap with no chicken underneath. The result should look something like two circles intersecting. This is so the ham will overlap the line where the chicken comes together when you roll it to help seal the ballotine.

Place the plastic wrap back on top of the chicken and ham, turn the chicken breast over, and remove the other piece of plastic wrap.

Place half of the leek mixture in the center of each chicken breast in a log shape.

Roll the chicken breast around the leek mixture like a burrito, tucking the ends of the breast in to seal the leek mixture inside. The prosciutto will wrap around the chicken to seal the ballotine.

Roll plastic wrap around the chicken breast cylinder to seal tightly and twist the ends (like a Tootsie Roll).

Place each chicken package inside its own small ziplock bag, then put the ballotines in the freezer for 15 minutes.

While the chicken is chilling, place the water in a large saucepan over high heat.

Add the ballotines, inside the ziplock bags, to the water and cook for 8 minutes. Remove and unwrap.

Heat the remaining 2 teaspoons olive oil over medium high heat and add the ballotines.

Cook for about 2 minutes on each side, until the prosciutto is golden brown, and serve.

Nutrition Facts

Serving size: 1 stuffed chicken breast

Servings: 2

Amount Per Serving

Calories 321 Calories from Fat 135
% Daily Value
Total Fat 15g 23%
    Saturated Fat 6g 30%
    Monounsaturated Fat 3g
    Trans Fat 0g
Cholesterol 99mg 33%
Sodium 536mg 23%
Total Carbohydrates 10g 3%
    Dietary Fiber 2g 8%
    Sugars 2g
Protein 36g
Vitamin A 20% Vitamin C 15%
Calcium 6% Iron 10%
Vitamin K 21mcg Potassium 589mg