It’s Tuesday and I’m posting, which means two things: I’m technically way behind on posting, yet I’m a day early for a Wheatless Wednesday. Look at it as you wish!
I’m a firm believer in the mantra “bacon makes everything better”. Falling somewhere between meat and vegetarian in my meal planning, it’s become a staple in my kitchen and a foundation for many things I make. What it lacks in nutrition is easily made up for in pure flavor magic.
And so, when one of my friends shared a recipe contest from American Family called “Makin’ the Bacon”, well, I accepted the challenge. At first I was going to go easy and submit a recipe for bacon-wrapped chicken I’ve already made. But I also have a bacon barbecue sauce that’s really good. After a bit of nudging from one of my bacon-loving friends to combine the two, I decided that a new recipe to fully capture the “Makin’ the Bacon” theme was in order. So, here it is: Chicken Cordon Bacon. It goes especially well with a side of roasted potato wedges. The barbecue sauce is also great for anything you might want to smother in barbecue sauce, like pork or burgers. The cheese filling would also work in stuffed jalapenos. Really, the possibilities are endless, because bacon really does make everything better.
The contest ends today, and it’s not enough to simply enter a recipe — it must be one of the top five entries by sheer number of votes. So, yes, if you have some time, go to the American Family facebook page and vote for my recipe under the Main Entrees category (make sure you click “Vote” and not just “Like”). I may not make it into the top 5, but I think this recipe is a winner.
Chicken Cordon Bacon
(a.k.a. Bacon-wrapped, Bacon & Cheese Stuffed Chicken with Bacon BBQ Sauce)
- 13 slices bacon
- 1 medium onion, chopped fine
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
- ½ cup cheddar cheese
- ¼ tsp. black pepper
- 3 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut in half horizontally (to create 6 filets) and pounded to ¼” thickness if necessary
- 1-1/2 tsp. salt
- ½ cup ketchup
- 2 Tbsp. molasses
- 2 Tbsp. packed brown sugar
- 2 Tbsp. cider vinegar
- 2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
- 1/4 tsp. black pepper
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Chop 4 slices bacon into pieces no larger than ¼”. Place in small saucepan with onion and cook over medium heat until browned, about 10 minutes. Add garlic; cook until fragrant, about 30-60 seconds. Remove from heat; place half of mixture in medium bowl. Leave remaining bacon mixture in saucepan and set aside.
Add cream cheese, cheddar cheese, and black pepper to the bacon mixture in the medium bowl. Mix until combined.
Cut 3 slices of bacon in half. Season chicken filets with salt. Divide cream cheese mixture between the six filets. Carefully roll chicken up from short end; holding chicken roll tightly with one hand, wrap with 1-1/2 pieces of bacon. Place in 9×13” baking dish. Repeat with remaining chicken. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until bacon is browned and chicken is cooked through (160 degrees).
While chicken is baking, return saucepan with bacon mixture to medium-low to medium heat. With whisk, mix in ketchup, molasses, brown sugar, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, and black pepper. Simmer gently for 10-15 minutes. Serve on side with chicken.