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Simple Switches: chicken Kiev


A good chicken Kiev is mouth-wateringly tasty, but can be eye-wateringly high in fat and calories. Here’s how to cut back on the naughtiness, but not on the taste.


  • Use a chicken breast for your Kiev, removing any skin and trimming off any visible fatty bits from the sides, too.
  • You can still get a good satisfying crunch on your Kiev without it being unhealthy. Make your own breadcrumbs using stale wholegrain bread (for extra fibre). Tear up a few slices and blitz in a blender or food processor. If you don’t have any stale bread, you can dry out a few slices in the oven first.
  • Dredge the chicken in wholemeal flour and season with a good pinch of pepper. Shake off any excess flour, dip thoroughly in beaten egg and cover in plenty of breadcrumbs.


  • For your juicy Kiev filling, there’s no need for traditional fatty garlic butter. Use a reduced-fat cream cheese, and add crushed garlic and finely chopped parsley. With a sharp knife, create a deep pocket in the breast (but don’t cut through to the other side), then spoon in your fresh filling.
  • Most recipes call for you to shallow fry or even deep fry the Kiev in order to seal in the butter. But, reduced-fat cream cheese is thicker and so won’t leak out as easily as melted butter. Simply place the Kiev on a lightly oiled baking tray and bake in a preheated oven (180°C/gas 6) for 18–22 minutes until golden brown.
  • If you serve your Kiev with a side of broccoli and mashed potato, you’ll have a hearty, healthy meal. Make your mash healthier by using skimmed milk and even a sweet potato, and watch your portions.
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