Healthy Quinoa Stuffed Chicken Roll-Ups

Chicken Roll-Ups

Leyla Shamayeva, MS, RD

Total Time: 55 min
Prep Time: 15 min
Cook Time: 40 min
Servings: 4

Nutrition Highlights (per serving)

112 calories
3g fat
5g carbs
15g protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving  
Calories 112
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 3g 4%
Saturated Fat 1g 5%
Cholesterol 46mg 15%
Sodium 413mg 18%
Total Carbohydrate 5g 2%
Dietary Fiber 1g 4%
Total Sugars 1g  
Includes 0g Added Sugars 0%
Protein 15g  
Vitamin D 0mcg 0%
Calcium 40mg 3%
Iron 1mg 6%
Potassium 259mg 6%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calorie a day is used for general nutrition advice.

Whole grains and veggies are commonly served alongside chicken for a healthy, balanced meal. In this recipe, they're wrapped up into one.

Chicken is a great source of high-quality protein and a smart dietary way to fight heart disease and type 2 diabetes. With lots of protein and less fat, these stuffed chicken roll-ups make for a light but filling heartburn-friendly meal.

The feta cheese in the recipe complements the steamed veggies and lean chicken breast adding a hint of creaminess to the meal without overpowering it. The lemon zest adds a nice bright flavor without any citrus juice, a known heartburn trigger.


  • 2 tablespoons quinoa, uncooked
  • 1/2 medium carrot, julienned
  • 1/4 cup broccoli stalks, julienned
  • 2 medium boneless, skinless chicken breasts, pounded to 1/4" thickness
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon oregano, dry
  • 1/2 cup spinach, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons feta cheese, crumbled
  • Zest from 1/2 lemon


  1. Set the quinoa to cook according to package instructions.

  2. Steam the carrots and broccoli stalks until slightly tender.

  3. Preheat oven to 350F.

  4. Lay chicken breast flat on a lined baking sheet and lightly spray with olive oil (or nonstick cooking spray) and sprinkle with salt on both sides.

  5. Divide the vegetables, oregano, and quinoa between the chicken breasts, along with the spinach, lemon zest, and feta cheese. Spoon everything onto the middle of the pounded breasts, keeping the filling away from the edges, then begin to roll from one end of the breast until you end up with a full roll. Tie with twine or insert toothpicks on either end to keep closed.

  6. Transfer the chicken rolls to a small heated pan, cooking until golden brown on all sides, about 5 minutes. 

  7. Transfer the rolls back to the baking sheet and continue cooking in the oven until the breasts are cooked through (about 15 minutes).

  8. Let the chicken cool 5 minutes before slicing and serving.

Variations and Substitutions

Although chicken roulades are more common, you can make this dish using turkey breast as well. Follow the same steps for a lean, Thanksgiving-style meal. The finished product will look beautiful on the table and the nutrition profile with this protein swap won't be significantly different.

Heartburn-friendly recipes often use lemon or orange zest to get the citrus flavor without the added acidity that lemon or orange juice provides. You can use orange zest instead of lemon in this recipe if you prefer.

Get creative with your veggie stuffing. Asparagus is a common choice in roulades. If it's in season, try it instead of the broccoli stems. Just two spears would be enough for each breast.

Cooking and Serving Tips

  • A steamer basket is the easiest way to steam veggies—simply bring water to a boil and then place the basket over the pot with the veggies inside. Cook covered for a few minutes.
  • There's also an easy way to thin out the chicken breast: a meat tenderizer. This hammer-like tool is often used to pound various cuts of beef and poultry. Simply place the chicken breast in a plastic bag or between two sheets of clear plastic wrap and pound it to the desired thinness. Make sure to pound evenly throughout.
  • This roulade is flavorful and strong on its own. It doesn't need an extravagant side dish; simply serve alongside a light salad.
  • You can also serve it with a honey mustard drizzle. Combine 1 tablespoon Greek yogurt with 1 teaspoon honey, 1 teaspoon yellow mustard, and 1 teaspoon water. Divide the mixture between the two breasts (each one will get about 1 tablespoon of sauce).

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2 Sources
Verywell Fit uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. Marangoni F, Corsello G, Cricelli C, et al. Role of poultry meat in a balanced diet aimed at maintaining health and wellbeing: an Italian consensus document. Food Nutr Res. 2015;59. doi:10.3402/fnr.v59.27606

  2. Jarosz M, Taraszewska A. Risk factors for gastroesophageal reflux disease: the role of diet. Prz Gastroenterol. 2014;9(5):297-301. doi:10.5114/pg.2014.46166

By Leyla Shamayeva, MS, RD
Leyla Shamayeva, MS, RD is a registered dietitian with a master's in clinical nutrition. She focuses her efforts on digital health communication.