Inspiration: Chicken cordon bleu has always been one of our favorite dishes. We served it as part of our wedding meal, after all. Chicken cordon bleu, roasted pork tenderloin, green beans, baby red potatoes. All topped with these gorgeous, deep purple edible flowers that just delighted me when I saw them. And boy did we get the royal treatment during that meal. A personal waitress who delivered our drinks from the bar, all of our personally-picked and favorite songs playing while we ate, a gorgeous sunny day shining through the huge windows behind us. Sharing that perfect setting and perfect meal with everyone that I love in the same room with me is one of my favorite memories. Oddly, I don’t know if we’ve eaten chicken cordon bleu since then (3+ years ago), and we had both been craving it the last few weeks after seeing it mentioned on TV. Our wedding version was a fancy, rolled version with a nice pan sauce, but a quick weeknight version fit the bill for us this time. I think they both have their place – and the fancy version is next up!
What we Loved: I loved the simplicity of this dish. It’s a great way to enjoy all of the flavors of chicken cordon bleu on a night when you might not necessarily have a lot of time to cook. And as far as the flavors go, there’s nothing bad to be said about the rich and savory combination of chicken, ham, and cheese. With only being quickly sauteed in a skillet, the chicken was nice and moist, and it had some great added flavor from paprika and Italian seasonings, We also used a smoked Swiss instead of a plain Swiss, and we really enjoyed that extra added smokiness. This is really just a simple, classic comfort food that is great any night of the week.
Helpful Hints: I used breakfast ham steaks to make this meal, but I feel like it would be really great with piles of shaved deli ham, too. I just love deli ham when it’s falling-apart shaved, so I think that’s another great option for this dish.
Skillet Chicken Cordon Bleu
Source: Very imprecise original recipe to serve 2
2 chicken breasts, butterflied (or cut into two cutlets each, if they’re really large)
Seasoning of choice (I used paprika, Italian seasoning, Kosher salt, and black pepper)
Butter and olive oil
Ham (I used 2 breakfast ham steaks, but you could also use ham from the deli)
Swiss cheese, freshly shredded (I used a smoked Swiss)
1. Season both sides of the chicken pieces well with your seasoning choice.
2. Heat a drizzle of olive oil and a pat of butter in a large saute pan. Add the chicken and the ham steaks. Cook until the chicken is nearly cooked through, about 3-4 minutes per side. The ham is already cooked, so you are just adding some flavor by browning it.
3. Place the ham and shredded Swiss on top of each chicken piece. Cover the pan, and cook until the cheese melts. Sprinkle with additional pepper and serve.