Italian sub stuffed chicken breast with salami, mortadella, capicolla, and provolone. A great way to get all the delicious flavors of an Italian sub in a keto friendly package.
Well, I now officially a huge stuffed chicken breast fan. It’s just such an easy and fun keto dinner and there are so many amazing ways to stuff it. My spinach stuffed chicken breast was the start of a new and glorious dinner journey.
I said I had another great idea for a stuffed chicken breast recipe and this one is it! Stuffing it with all the makings for an Italian Sub just seemed like a good idea. A very good, very tasty idea.
And I was spot on, it would seem!
Why use chicken breasts?
Chicken breasts by themselves are not always the best choice for keto, because they are very high protein and very low fat. Depending on your keto goals, they may throw your macros off a bit.
But they are far easier to stuff than chicken thighs, which have an irregular shape and don’t cut very evenly. For thighs, you usually have to pound them out into flat filets, and the roll them and stuff them that way. It’s a laborious and messy process.
As long as you stuff your breasts with rich keto-friendly stuffings, you can make this work well for a keto diet.
You can see that the protein in this stuffed chicken breast recipe comes in at a whopping 52g. But it also has a relatively high fat content from the cheese and Italian sub meats. And with 550 calories per breast, this is a very filling meal.
I tend to eat about ¾ of one breast, and let my husband finish off the rest. I round my meals out with some fresh veggies or cauliflower rice. So you may even be able to stretch this keto dinner recipe to a full 6 servings.
Low Carb Italian Sub Recipe
I really had a lot of fun dreaming up this recipe, because I use to love a good Italian sub sandwich. Even back in my high carb days, I was far more interested in the meats and fillings than the bread.
So taking all of those yummy deli meats, along with some roasted red pepper and some pepperoncini and using the chicken breast as the “bread” is a delicious way to enjoy those flavors again.
A few tips for making these Italian Sub Stuffed Chicken Breasts:
Use a very sharp knife: You will be slicing the chicken sideways and opening it up like a book. In essence, you will be butterflying each breast. So a sharp knife is critical. Just don’t cut all the way through.
Use thinly sliced meats and cheeses: Thin sliced will allow you to fold the chicken over the Italian Sub fillings properly.
Secure the opening with toothpicks: Thread the toothpicks a few times through the opening to keep the chicken breasts closed. But don’t forget to remove the toothpicks before serving!
Brown the breasts first: Browning in a hot pan before baking gives your chicken breast much more flavor.
Use an oven-proof skillet: To make sure the chicken is fully cooked through, baking in an oven is best. So use a skillet that can go from stovetop to oven without issue.
What to serve with your Keto Stuffed Chicken?
So many delicious side dish possibilities to make this a full meal. Here are a few I recommend:
Italian Sub Stuffed Chicken Breast
- 4 medium chicken breasts
- Salt and pepper
- 4 slices provolone cheese
- 4 slices mortadella
- 8 slices thinly sliced salami
- 8 slices thinly sliced capicolla
- 2 ounces sliced roasted red peppers
- 2 ounces pepperoncini
- 2 tablespoon olive oil or avocado oil
- 4 ounces shredded mozzarella
- 2 tbsp fresh chopped basil
- Preheat the oven to 350F. Cut a deep slit sideways into each chicken breast but don't cut fully in half. Lay each breast open like a book and season lightly with salt and pepper.
- Top each opened chicken breast with a slice of provolone, a slice of mortadella, two slices of salami, and 2 slices of capicolla. Add a few slices of roasted red pepper and pepperoncini on top.
- Fold the chicken breasts tightly around the fillings and secure the openings with toothpicks. Season the outside lightly with salt and pepper.
- Heat a large ovenproof skillet over medium heat. Add the oil until shimmering, then add the chicken breasts. Cook until golden brown, about 3 or 4 minutes on each side.
- Sprinkle the top of each chicken breast with mozzarella and place the whole pan in the oven. Bake about 15 to 20 minutes, until the chicken reaches 165F on an instant read thermometer.
- Sprinkle chopped basil over before serving.