30 November 2011

Weeknight Supper: Chapel Hill Chicken

Dear Lissy,

I love how recipes bring to mind the person who shared them!  Every time I make Chapel Hill Chicken,  I think of and pray for my high school piano teacher.  I wish I had this recipe in her handwriting, but it's still special in my heart.  I particularly like this dish for casual entertaining because it looks like a simple, non-threatening crumb-coated chicken breast, but has a savory, cheesy flavor and a nice crunch.  It can be sliced and fanned for presentation on the plate, or just left whole to pass family style.

Chapel Hill Chicken

6 Boneless, skinless chicken breast cutlets
2 cups dry stuffing mix 
1/2 cup sour cream
1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup butter, melted (optional)

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and lightly grease a cookie sheet.  Melt butter if using.
  2. Slice or pound chicken cutlets to less than 1/2" thick.  Pat dry.
  3. Pour dry stuffing mix into pie plate or dish.  If the stuffing mix is cubes rather than rough pieces, it works best to crush it slightly first. 
  4. Mix sour cream, Worcestershire, lemon juice, and salt in another pie plate or small bowl.
  5. Dip the chicken pieces into the sour cream mixture, and then into the stuffing mix.  Lay in a single layer on the cookie sheet.
  6. Drizzle with melted butter if desired.  Although it is exceptionally yummy with the butter, the calories and cost go up considerably.
  7. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes or until completely cooked through.  Remove from oven and let stand about 5 minutes before serving.
Momma's Notes
  • I like a high crunch to chicken ratio, so I make sure the cutlets are pounded quite thin.  They cook more quickly that way, too, often finishing in 15 minutes.
  • This dish is rich and very flavorful so it pairs best with lightly steamed veggies, salads, or even fresh fruit salads.  There's already a considerable amount of breading, so I don't serve a starch at a family meal. 
  • The sour cream cooks to a cream cheese consistency and flavor -- don't try to substitute.
  • Use turkey cutlets instead of chicken for a Thanksgiving style meal.  
  • I start the chicken on the bottom shelf of the oven and then move it to the top shelf so all of the breading is crispity-crunchy.
  • If you are having pre-schoolers in for a meal, consider getting pre-made chicken nuggets for them.  (And that's true any time you serve chicken to company, not just with this dish.)
Because chicken is inexpensive and versatile, I serve it once a week.  Chapel Hill Chicken only makes it into the rotation 3-4 times a year so that it stays a special treat.   I find it easy to fall into a rut and serve an endless cycle of Chicken Parmesan, Awesome Possum, Chicken Picatta, and, Sauteed Chicken with Maple Apple Cream Pan Sauce -- all recipes I can make without a recipe and only the ingredients in my pantry.  It takes a few extra minutes to look through my chicken recipes and mix it up, but I find that it makes a big difference in how our family responds when they come to the table.  

Love you lots,


  1. Making this tonight for my husband! He came in and saw the chicken before i put it in the oven and declared it "fancy!" Lol :)

    Looks yummy! I cant wait to try it!

  2. Oooook, this might be the best chicken dish Ive ever had. It was yummy! Definitely going into the dinner routine! Thank you!

  3. I made this for dinner last night and everyone loved it! Jack told me it was the best, and asked if I would make it every night for dinner. Thanks for sharing a great recipe. I used your tips and made them thin and crunchy, although I held back a little on the butter and used half a stick. Delicious!!!!