Spinach Artichoke Rollups with Chicken…mmmmmm

So far the only things I have posted have been sweets, but I do feed my boyfriend things other than cupcakes. Actually, I love to cook almost as much as I love to bake. I am just not quite as good at the savory delights yet.

This recipe is something I am especially proud to share because I made it up on my own and it was actually completely delicious. The idea came to me while reading a recipe for Taco Roll Ups. I thought the idea sounded good, but I am not a huge taco eater and I was looking for something more creative to do with chicken; however the concept of rolling ooey gooey goodness inside a tender, flaky crescent roll made my mind explode with possibilities.

Thus Spinach Artichoke Rollups with Chicken were born.

The best part about this recipe is that it is the perfect and easy weeknight meal, it makes cute and easy-to-eat appetizers or the filling can be served with crackers or toasted bread just like regular spinach dip.

 

Here is the grocery list:

  • 1 pound of chicken breast tenderloins
  • 1 tblsp olive oil
  • 1 tblsp Italian seasoning (feel free to use fresh herbs if you have them, I just despise herb chopping)
  • 1 tblsp garlic powder
  • 1 pound baby spinach (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 small onion
  • ½ jar artichoke hearts
  • 1 pound cream cheese (softened)
  • ½ grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 cans of Pilsbury Crescent rolls (this should make 16 rollups)

OK, start by preheating your oven to the temperature it says on the crescent roll can (which might be 400 if I remember right).

Then get a skillet with your olive oil heating over medium-high heat.

Take your chicken tenders and clean off any excess fatty deposits (yes it is nasty, but you will be thankful you did when you don’t bite into that chewy awkward piece of chicken later on).  Sprinkle each side of the chicken with salt, pepper, garlic powder and Italian seasoning. Sautee your chicken until its golden brown and cooked all the way through. When your chicken is done, just lay it on a paper towel to cool enough for you to handle.

 

 

 

 

 

While this is happening, get started on the veggies for the filling. Finely chop your onion and artichokes. I hate huge pieces of artichoke, but if you like them that way you can just rough chop the pieces that come in the can.

 

 

 

 

 

At this point I also sliced up 1 zucchini for that night’s side dish, fried zucchini straws (yummy!).

Now, lower the heat in your skillet and if you need to add another tsp of oil that’s fine. I had to because my chicken soaked up all the juicy goodness of the first tsp.

Add your onion and artichokes and let them work a few minutes until they are just softened and getting a little color. The slight caramelizing of the onions will give off a nice sweet flavor that is a happily ever after for this filling.

Now it is time to add the spinach. I used fresh because I really hate wringing out thawed spinach. If you already have frozen just make sure it is completely thawed and that you get all the water out of it before adding it to the mix.

After just a few short minutes your spinach will be nice and wilted. After your spinach wilts down some add a little salt, pepper, garlic powder and Italian seasoning. It will amp up the flavors in the chicken and ensure the whole dish is well seasoned. Also, my fresh spinach did create a little water so I drained that off really well before mixing it into my filling.

While my spinach cooked, I shredded the chicken into thin, bite-sized morsels and threw those into a bowl. Then I added my spinach mix and tossed that together. Now for the really good stuff, add your very soft cream cheese and grated Parmesan and stir until it is all really combined.

Unroll your crescent rolls, which is a pain in my booty and I might consider using puff pastry sheets the next time, and carefully stuff about a tablespoon of filling onto the thickest part of the dough. Roll them up so that all the filling is covered. Mine did not come out looking like Miss America Roll-Ups, but like I said before crescent rolls frustrate me so I gave up fighting with them and just rolled with it.

Now spray your baking sheet, stab each roll with a fork one time to let steam escape and place them in the oven for about 13-15 minutes.

As an extra treat here is what I did while my roll-ups baked.

I busted out my favorite Christmas gift from last year, my baby deep fryer, and heated the oil to 350.Then I coated my zucchini strips in a little flour, and dredged them in this amazing fry coating.

It is actually meant as an onion ring batter, but the thick consistency makes it just about perfect for frying most veggies. Then throw them into the fryer in an even layer for about 3 minutes and voila! You have fried zucchini that would tell Carrabbas $8 appetizer where to shove it.

I brought these babies out to my boyfriend and he immediately decided they had to become part of our regular dinner rotations!Hope they become part of yours too!

 

 

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