Chicken Thighs Stuffed With Ricotta and Broccoli

Serves 4.

Note: From "The Ultimate One-Pan Oven Cookbook," by Julia Konovalova.

• 1 (10.5-oz.) smooth ricotta

• 1 egg

1 c. chopped broccoli florets (about 5 to 6 small florets)

1 1/2 tsp. mixed seasoning, such as Mrs. Dash no-salt seasoning

• 1/2 tsp. salt

1 c. shredded cheese, such as mozzarella, Cheddar or Havarti, divided

• Oil spray

8 skinless, boneless chicken thighs, flattened to even depth with a meat tenderizer if necessary

• Chopped parsley, for serving


Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In medium bowl, combine ricotta, egg, broccoli, seasoning mix and salt, and 1/2 cup shredded cheese. Mix well. Coat a baking dish with oil spray (either an 8- or 9-inch pie plate or a 7- by 10-inch roasting pan works well).

Place a big spoonful of the ricotta mixture onto the center of each flattened chicken thigh and wrap the meat around the filling. Place the stuffed chicken thighs into a prepared pan, seam-side down. The stuffed chicken thighs should fit snugly in the pan. Depending on the size of the chicken thighs, there might be a bit of the ricotta mixture left over. If so, spread it evenly over the chicken. Sprinkle chicken with the remaining 1/2 cup of shredded cheese.

Bake for about 45 to 50 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through and the internal temperature of the meat reaches 160 degrees. Since the chicken thighs are packed tightly in the roasting pan, they take longer to cook than if they were on a baking sheet. The juices from the chicken create almost a braising liquid and, when done, a sauce. Serve sprinkled with chopped parsley.