Stuffed Chicken Marsala is a gourmet meal that will soon become part of your weeknight rotation! Oven-baked chicken is packed with Fontina, Parmesan, and sun-dried tomatoes, then covered in rich marsala sauce. In 45 minutes or less, you’ll have a restaurant-worthy dinner on your table!
Why you’ll love this recipe
- Depth of flavor: The sauce, combined with garlic and mushrooms, brings a depth of flavor that elevates each bite of this stuffed chicken marsala.
- An easy gourmet dish: While this dish screams gourmet in every way, you’ll be amazed at how simple it is to prepare. It’s ready in just 45 minutes!
- Double the cheese: If you’re a cheese lover like I am, the combination of Fontina and Parmesan in this stuffed chicken marsala is to die for!
Gourmet stuffed chicken marsala
I can’t wait for you to taste your first bite of this stuffed chicken marsala! I can confidently say you’ll be shocked by the results. My family can’t get enough of it, and I’m certain it will be the same case for your family too.
If you’re a busy mom or dad and don’t have time to make gourmet recipes that take hours, stuffed chicken marsala may be just what you need. It comes together in about 45 minutes, and it couldn’t be easier to prepare!
Succulent chicken breasts are stuffed with melty cheese, tangy sun-dried tomatoes, and aromatic spices. And the marsala sauce really elevates the dish with its rich, sweet, and nutty flavors. You’re going to want to add this to the weekly rotation as soon as possible!
What is marsala wine?
Marsala is a fortified wine that is produced in Sicily. It comes in three colors (gold, amber, and ruby) and three levels of sweetness (dry, semi-sweet, and sweet).
It’s most commonly used in cooking to impart nutty, rich caramelized flavors, but good-quality marsala wine can also be sipped on, just like Sherry or Madeira. For this recipe, I recommend using dry marsala wine.
Ingredients & substitutions
- Chicken breasts: Absorb the flavors of the stuffing and sauce well. You can also use boneless skinless chicken thighs if you prefer richer, darker meat, but you’ll need to increase the cooking time.
- Fontina: Creamy and slightly tangy, Fontina melts beautifully, giving the chicken its gooey center. The next best substitutions include mild provolone, gruyere, or Gouda.
- Parmesan: Adds depth and umami to the dish. If Parmesan isn’t available, you can use Asiago or Pecorino Romano cheese instead.
- Sun-dried tomatoes: Impart a tangy, concentrated tomato flavor, complementing the richness of the cheeses. If they’re unavailable, try diced roasted red peppers.
- Italian seasoning: Provides the dish with a Mediterranean flavor profile. You can make your own mix with dried basil, oregano, rosemary, and thyme.
- Garlic powder: Adds a mild garlic flavor to the chicken. I don’t recommend using freshly minced garlic to season the chicken as it will burn.
- Olive oil: Used to sear the chicken, adding an additional layer of flavor. Canola or another neutral vegetable oil can also be used.
- Thyme: The aromatic, earthy notes of fresh thyme pair perfectly with chicken. Rosemary or oregano are also delicious choices.
- Marsala cooking wine: Marsala works best, but if you are in a pinch, you can use Sherry or Madeira. If you’re avoiding alcohol, chicken broth is a great substitute.
- Fresh garlic: Brings a punchy, aromatic flavor to the sauce. If you only have garlic powder, remember to use ¼ teaspoon for every clove.
- Mushrooms: Add an earthy depth to the sauce. You can use any type like cremini, shiitake, or button. If you’re not a fan, simply omit the mushrooms.
- Heavy cream: Gives the sauce its rich, creamy consistency. For a lighter version, you can use half and half.
How to make stuffed chicken marsala
- Prep the chicken: Pat the chicken dry, then carefully cut a pocket into the thicker half of each breast without slicing all the way through.
- Add the filling: In a bowl, combine the Fontina, Parmesan, sun-dried tomatoes, and Italian seasoning. Divide the filling among the chicken breasts, securing the openings with toothpicks.
- Season the chicken: Mix salt and garlic powder in a small bowl, then sprinkle this over the stuffed chicken breasts, making sure to thoroughly rub it in.
- Sear the breasts: Heat the olive oil in an oven-safe pan, then sear the chicken breasts for about 3-4 minutes on each side. Remove the chicken breasts and set them aside.
- Marsala sauce: Using the same skillet, add the marsala wine, garlic, mushrooms, heavy cream, salt, and thyme sprigs. Bring it to a boil for a few minutes.
- Combine & bake: Return the chicken to the skillet, spooning some sauce over it. Transfer the pan to the oven and bake until the chicken is fully cooked and the cheese has melted.
- Final touches: Remove your stuffed chicken marsala from the oven, discard the thyme sprigs, and garnish with Parmesan and fresh thyme before serving. Enjoy!
To further enhance the flavors of this stuffed chicken marsala recipe, pair it with some of these sides:
- Garlic bread or Spanish tomato bread
- Kale Caesar salad
- Spaghetti with garlic herb breadcrumbs
- Roasted beet and burrata salad
- Mashed potatoes
Frequently asked questions
Absolutely! Chicken thighs can provide a richer, more succulent flavor than breasts, but remember to monitor and adjust the cooking time to ensure they’re thoroughly cooked.
It’s best to always check the internal temperature of your chicken. A meat thermometer should register an internal temperature of 165F, indicating it’s cooked and safe to consume.
Storage & reheating
For any leftover stuffed chicken marsala, follow these simple storage tips:
- Fridge: Once cooled, store the chicken in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
- Freezer: Stuffed marsala chicken is best consumed warm, but you can freeze it for up to a month in a freezer-safe container or bag.
- Reheating: Warm it in the oven at 350F until heated through, or microwave it in 30-second intervals, checking it in between.
- Spinach and feta: Swap out the Fontina and Parmesan for feta and add spinach.
- Pesto stuffed: Add a few spoonfuls of basil pesto to the filling.
- Bacon wrapped: Wrap the stuffed chicken in bacon before searing.
- Alfredo sauce: Instead of marsala, use Alfredo sauce for a creamy finish.
- Cut on the thick side: Cut the chicken breasts on the thicker side for the best results and uniform cooking.
- Use a hot pan: Ensure your skillet is nice and hot before searing for a golden crust.
- Rest the chicken: Let the chicken rest for a few minutes so it retains its juices.
- Temperature check: Use a meat thermometer to check that the chicken is cooked to a safe internal temperature.
Looking for more delicious chicken recipes?
If you enjoyed this stuffed chicken marsala recipe, be sure to check out some more of my favorites like these:
If you try this Stuffed Chicken Marsala recipe, let me know what you think! Rate and review this recipe in the comments below. Don’t forget to take a picture and tag me on Instagram @lenaskitchenblog!
Stuffed Chicken Masala
- 1 ½ cups marsala wine or sub for chicken broth
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 8 ounces mushrooms sliced
- ½ cup heavy cream
- ½ teaspoon salt or more to taste
- 2 sprigs thyme
- ¼ cup parmesan cheese grated
- Preheat the oven to 400 F degrees.
- Pat the chicken dry with a paper towel. Use a sharp knife to cut 2-3″ wide pocket into the thick side of each chicken breast, being sure not to cut all the way through the other side.
- In a bowl combine the shredded fontina cheese, sun dried tomatoes, parmesan cheese and italian seasoning.
- Divide the cheese mixture between each chicken, filling the pocket.
- Pinch together the open side of the chicken breasts and secure with toothpicks.
- In a small bowl mix together the salt and garlic powder, then sprinkle the chicken on both sides and rub it in with your fingers.
- Add the olive oil into an oven safe pan and sear the chicken over medium-high heat for 3-4 minutes on each side. Remove the chicken to a plate and then using the same skillet prepare the marsala sauce.
- Add marsala cooking wine, garlic, mushrooms, heavy cream, salt and thyme sprigs. Stir and bring to a boil and cook for 3-4 minutes. Return chicken pan and spoon some of the sauce over the chicken.
- Transfer skillet to preheated oven and bake for 20-25 minutes until chicken is cooked all the way through and cheeses are melted.
- Remove the pan from the oven and discard the thyme sprigs. Spoon the masala sauce over the chicken, top with grated parmesan cheese and fresh thyme, and serve.