Chicken Cordon Bleu Bread Bowls

Get ready to think beyond soup-in-bread-bowls because this meal will knock your socks off.

All the flavors of chicken cordon bleu wrapped up in a deliciously hearty bread bowl, smothered in a creamy, decadent, flavorful sauce and baked to bubbly, cheesy perfection.

Who knew a bread bowl could be so delicious filled with something so not-soup-ish! This bread bowl is packed with chicken, ham, and broccoli and topped with a silky Swiss and light mustard sauce. Beyond delicious. Beyond.

Chicken Cordon Bleu Bread Bowls

What To ServeArtisan or Italian Bread Bowls
Simple green Salad (or for an extra special salad this Spinach Salad with Spicy Nuts)
Fresh, seasonal fruit

One Year Ago: Teriyaki Meatballs
Two Years Ago: Quick and Delicious Clam Chowder
Three Years Ago: No-Knead Bread Revolution

Chicken Cordon Bleu Bread Bowls

Yield: Serves 4-6

Chicken Cordon Bleu Bread Bowls

Note: if you don’t have apple juice on hand, you can omit the apple juice and increase the chicken broth to 1 3/4 cups.


    For the Chicken and Sauce:
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts cubed (about 2-3 chicken breasts)
  • 1/2 cup minced yellow onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • ½ cup apple juice
  • 1 1/4 cups chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 tablespoons prepared yellow mustard
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 2-3 cups broccoli florets
  • Salt and cayenne pepper to taste
  • To Assemble:
  • 4-6 medium round regular or sourdough bread bowls (I used this Italian Bread bowl recipe)
  • 8-10 thin slices smoked ham
  • 1 cup grated Swiss cheese
  • ¼ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with foil and lightly coat the foil with cooking spray.
  2. Place the broccoli florets in a microwave-safe bowl and cover with plastic wrap or a tight fitting microwave-safe lid. Microwave on high for 3-4 minutes until tender but still bright green. Remove the plastic wrap and set aside.
  3. In a 10- or 12-inch skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the chicken and saute until the chicken begins to brown but isn’t cooked all the way through, about 3-4 minutes. Stir in the onions and garlic and cook, stirring often, until softened (when chicken is still slightly pink), about 2 minutes. Sprinkle the flour over the chicken/onion mixture and stir to incorporate. Cook, stirring, constantly for one minute.
  4. Gradually add the chicken broth and apple juice, stirring constantly to avoid any clumps from forming. Stir in the cream, Parmesan cheese, mustard and thyme. Simmer for about 5-6 minutes, until the mixture is thickened and bubbly. Stir in the broccoli; season with salt and cayenne pepper to taste. Remove from heat.
  5. Hollow out the inside of the bread bowls by cutting off the tops and tearing out the insides. I like to leave about a 1/4-inch edge along all sides of the bread bowl. Compress the remaining bread together to firm up the sides and make room for the filling. Place the bread bowls on the prepared baking sheet and toast them for about 5 minutes in the preheated oven.
  6. Remove the toasted loaves from the oven and arrange the ham slices in the bottom of each loaf. Using a slotted spoon, divide chicken mixture evenly between loaves, reserving about 1-2 cups sauce in the pan for serving. Top the chicken mixture in each loaf with shredded Swiss and a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese.
  7. Bake the bread bowls until the cheese melts, about 10-15 minutes. Serve each bread bowl with reserved cream sauce.

Recipe Source: adapted from Mindika Moments who adapted it from Cuisine at Home

52 Responses to Chicken Cordon Bleu Bread Bowls

  1. Mandy Callaghan says:

    Hey Mel, I’m not a swiss cheese fan. Any other cheese you might suggest that would go good with this?

  2. Nancy E says:

    I made these about a year ago and the whole family loved them. But now I can’t remember what I used for the cream. All I saw at my grocery store that said “heavy” was whipping cream. Can I use that?

  3. Camille says:

    Do you know if this can be made ahead of time and frozen? I am hoping to serve this at our Relief Society Birthday Dinner.

    • Mel says:

      Hi Camille – I don’t think this would be the best recipe to freeze and serve later. I’m afraid the bread might get way too soggy. However, I haven’t actually tried it so if you have time for a test run, you might find it could work.

  4. Marnie says:

    I made these for company too. They were a hit.. so delicious! This is definitely going on my ‘make again soon’ list. Thank you so much! YUM

  5. Kate says:

    I modified this recipe as a fondue and it was SO GOOD! I just made the sauce sans chicken and served it with bread chunks, red bell pepper strips, carrots, cherry tomatoes, red potatoes, and broccoli. Yum!!!

  6. JANET FISHER says:

    has anybody tried to make the chicken with sauce in the morning and just reheat it before you put it in the bread bowls?

  7. […] husband likes Chicken Cordon Bleu alot. I like it on occasion. I ran across this recipe over at Mel’s Kitchen Cafe and decided to give it a […]

  8. Kat says:

    I halved this recipe and made it for just my hubby and me. It turned out absolutely fabulous! I was excited to try it because it sounded different then anything I had ever tried before (apple juice, mustard and thyme? I had no idea what that would taste like). The sauce turned out light and creamy (even with milk substituted for cream) and it looked (and tasted) so fancy! Thanks for another great recipe!

  9. Natalie says:

    *Dumb question alert*
    What is “prepared yellow mustard”? Is that the kind that I have in my fridge or is it a spice? (I hang my head in shame 🙁 ! )


    • Mel says:

      Natalie – lift that head up! No hanging heads in shame here. I love and welcome any question (except for the “why can’t you post healthier recipes” variety). Anyway, yes, prepared yellow mustard is the classic French’s (or whatever brand you prefer) of yellow mustard…the kind you would squeeze on a ham and cheese sandwich.

  10. Ashlee says:

    These were fantastic!!! I always love me some chicken cordon bleu recipes, and this was another great way to make it! I had my husband make me some bread bowls (did I mention we bought a Great Harvest?!), so it was really fast and easy for me! Thanks again!

  11. Jane says:

    Just wanted to say I made these the other night for dinner. They were soooo yummy.

    Thanks for a great go to recipe. Plus it was really easy to make.

  12. SJ says:

    The 8-10 thin slices smoked ham….it that just deli smoked ham, like you would use on a sandwich or is it something else? Thanks, I am excited to try it!

  13. Tyra says:

    Couldn’t resist featuring this…Thanks!

  14. Camille says:

    Mel – I made these last night for dinner guests – see how much I trust you! 🙂 They were amazing! These are my new favorite! I went the easy route and bought my bread bowls. They were a little big and the recipe filled 5 of them about 3/4 of the way. Next time I will only make 4 because I could have eaten more!

    • Mel says:

      Camille – I’m both honored and scared that you trust me that much. 🙂 Glad this worked out – I was wondering how it would go for you after we talked about it.

  15. grace says:

    i’ve never considered filling a bread bowl with anything other than soup. i like your broad thinking, mel, and i like your creation here.

  16. Mary says:

    Your “food photos” are always so amazing. They are often the reason I try your recipes.

  17. Yummy! What a great idea, a must try I think.

  18. Peggy says:

    Wow! This looks like the most comforting and decadent meal I’ve seen in ages! Definitely bookmarking this one!

  19. Jessica says:

    My husband thinks these look delicious! Another encouraging recipe (made your broccoli and cheese in store bought bread bowls), can’t wait to try it.

  20. holly says:

    These sound and look pretty darn divine!!! I’m printing the recipe to try soon:) Thanks!

  21. Sarah says:

    This looks amazing! I think I’m going to try and make this tomorrow . . . but do you have a suggestion for a substitute for the broccoli? I like broccoli, but the hubby hates it . . .

  22. Cathryn says:

    I think I just died and went to heaven. I mean, Cordon Bleu + Bread Bowl??!! Heaven.

  23. Renee says:

    Mel, this was really, really good! And it made a beautiful presentation too. Great taste, easy to make and assemble (especially since I had bread bowls in the freezer) and a great meal to serve to company because it truly is restaurant quality in taste and presentation. Thank you so much for sharing another great recipe!

    • Mel says:

      Renee – thanks so much for checking back in! I was wondering all day how it turned out after reading your comment that you were going to make it. I’m thrilled you loved it!

  24. briarrose says:

    Looks amazing. I’m pretty sure I couldn’t resist anything served in a bread bowl. 😉

  25. Krystal says:

    This looks amazing. Can’t wait to give it a try!

    -Krystal @

  26. Deborah says:

    I love anything in a bread bowl, but this looks absolutely amazing!!!

  27. Renee says:

    Holy crap. I know what I’m making for dinner tonight! And I have four bread bowls in the freezer. Running out now to get the ham and swiss cheese! I shall return and report!! 😉

  28. Cammee says:

    These look divine! Help me though–I have tried your bread bowls a couple of times and they end up kind of flatish. Not like frisbee or hockey puck flat, but not a nice, high, round bread bowl. Any suggestions?

    • Mel says:

      Hey Cammee – I’ve had that happen a time or two with the bread bowls and I would definitely suggest adding more flour. I always lean on the side of slightly overflouring my bread bowls. It helps them hold their shape and rise nicely. If they are already shaped and rising on the baking sheet and you notice them flattening, pull each one off, knead in about a tablespoon or two more flour, reshape and set them back on the baking sheet to rise. Hope that helps!

  29. This looks amazing! I am wondering if I could make mini versions of this, like for appetizers. Just dice everything smaller? I wonder if that would work….

    • Mel says:

      Jenna – I think that would work – but would probably take you at least half a year to do! However, the result would be stunning and delicious.

  30. Heather says:

    Could you use white wine in place of the apple juice?

    • Mel says:

      Heather – yes, you could use white wine. I believe that was in the original recipe but since I usually don’t have wine on hand to cook with, apple juice is a great substitution.

  31. This looks amazing. A-mazing. You are a wonder with those bread bowls!

  32. Megan H. says:

    umm i just passed out. that looks delicious. Im TERRIBLE! at making bread bowls though. everytime ive tried(which is only twice, but still traumatic) has been a disaster.. I may have to try again though for this recipe.

  33. StephenC says:

    I’ve never made anything in a bread bowl Now’s the time!

  34. Christine says:

    I really want to make these! Wish I wasnt on a low carb diet!!! maybe I’ll have to cheat one day!

  35. Kelli says:

    Can I come to your house for these? I absolutely love anything in a bread bowl!

  36. Jennifer @ Jane Deere says:

    OH MY! This looks awesome! I can’t wait to try it!

  37. nicole says:

    i would have never thought of something like that. it looks decadent and delicious!!

  38. This looks great. Thanks for sharing. 🙂

  39. Kim in MD says:

    WOW! You have done it again, Melanie! This looks so delicious and elegant…it would be great for entertaining! What a great new twist on the classic Chicken Cordon Bleu recipe. I can’t wait to try it!

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