Take-Out Fake-Out: Chicken Relleno (and Burgers Relleno)

in Burgers & Sliders, Chicken & Turkey, Cinco de Mayo, Lighter & Healthier, Mexican & TexMex, Take-out Fake-out

Chicken Relleno

One of my favorite places to grab lunch near the Foodie Groom’s office is Cafe Red Onion. With the world’s best collection of Tex-Mex restaurants within 5 minutes in any direction of our house, their “Latin fusion” really stands out. The food is incredibly fresh and every plate that comes out of the kitchen is a festive and colorful work of culinary art. And if you need another excuse, their pineapple salsa can be incredibly addicting.

My favorite dish is the Chicken Relleno: a chicken breast stuff with an oozy goat cheese that’s loaded with pistachios, poblano, and roasted red pepper and served over and under a cilantro curry sauce. It’s served along side a quick and super simple fun confetti-style pile of white rice tossed with rinsed black beans and diced Texas cantaloupe (don’t forget to hit it with a little lime juice and cilantro for garnish!).

While the recipe serves 4, I recommend only making 3 – dinner, a leftover lunch, and then a worthy use of the remaining stuffing and sauce for His & Her Burger Night:

Leftover Chicken Relleno

I know, right?

Chicken Relleno

Chicken breasts stuffed with goat cheese, pistachios, poblano, and roasted red pepper and served over and under a cilantro curry sauce.


  • For the filling:
  • 1/3 cup pistachios, shelled
  • 4 oz goat cheese, softened
  • juice from 1/2 a lime
  • 2 Tbsp cilantro, chopped
  • 1/2 roasted red bell pepper, chopped (reserve the other half for another use)
  • 1/2 roasted poblano pepper (reserve the other half for the sauce)
  • salt and pepper
  • For the chicken:
  • 4 5-oz chicken breasts
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • For the sauce:
  • 1 bunch cilantro
  • 1 inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/2 of roasted poblano
  • juice and zest from 1/2 a lime
  • dash of curry powder
  • fat-free half and half or canned condensed milk (not sweetened!)


  1. Preheat oven to 425. Process pistachios in the food processor for ~10 seconds, until mostly ground. Add goat cheese and lime juice and process until thoroughly mixed. Add cilantro, the chopped bell pepper and poblano peppers and pulse to just combine. Salt and pepper to taste.
  2. Pound chicken breasts to an even thickness. Season both sides with salt and pepper. Place 1/4 of the goat cheese mixture in the center of each chicken breast. Roll the ends up and secure with toothpicks. Heat olive oil in an oven-safe saute pan until very hot. Place chicken breasts in the pan (toothpicks up) and sear 1-2 minutes, until nicely browned. Flip (toothpicks down) and transfer to the oven for ~8-10 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through (use a meat thermometer).
  3. While the chicken is baking, make the sauce: Cut the bunch of cilantro so that most of the stems are left behind. Place all ingredients except the half-and-half in a blender. With the blender running, slowly stream in the half-and-half until you reach a nice, saucy consistency. Transfer to a small sauce pan and heat on low. Salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Divide chicken between plates and serve with a generous spoonful of sauce.


Yields: 4 servings

Inspired by Cafe Red Onion

Estimated time: 45 minutes

Nutritional Information
Calories: 372.1 | Fat: 18.5 | Fiber 2.3
WW Points: 9

17 comments… add one

  • Wow! I can’t get over how amazing this looks and will definitely be making it soon. Also, your hamburger is the prettiest (and most delicious looking) hamburger I’ve ever seen.

  • OMG! I love you! I miss Red Onion soooo bad; definitely making this for the weekend! Can I request that you work on a recipe to replicate their pineapple salsa, por favor? You’re right, it is so addicting.

  • Marg

    I really like that place, need to use a restaurant.com cert from there too! But this looks so yummy, will have to make at home.

  • That looks incredible!

  • I’ve always meant to give Cafe Red Onion a try! I never knew that it was this good! Now I’m torn on whether to go there myself or simply make your version.

    I’ve got it! I’ll just order something different at the restaurant. I think I;m gonna go get in the car right now–pineapple salsa simply can’t wait! 😀

  • That sounds so amazing! I’m hungry for lunch already…

  • Oh man, I’m enamored. I wish the tex-mex/latin restaurants around here got this creative!

  • Very interesting!!! I like the sauce and can think of several ideas to use it with. Thanks!!!

  • YUM! This looks so incredibly delicious!

  • This looks delicious! All of your ingredients in the sauce are so tasty. Great creation!

  • What a delicious dinner idea, and I love the idea of using the leftover topping for burgers. Thanks for sharing this!

  • Love the sound of the pistachios here, and the sauce sounds delicious!

  • Jennifer

    So glad you posted this! It is by far my favorite dish at Red Onion.

  • That looks absolutely delicious. I’m still pretty new to Austin and am so glad you share favorites spots. I can’t wait to try them!

  • Wow – what a delicious looking chicken!

  • Mellybrown

    We had this for dinner tonight and WOW! Even with a sinus infection I could still taste all the bold flavors and it was so delicious. Thanks for a great recipe. Now I’m jonesing after the queso ….

  • I just made this for dinner and this is absolutely amazing!! Seriously, I can’t get over how good this is. This is better than what I can get at a restaurant! I may have to make a link to this on my blog. Thanks for posting!

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