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How many calories are in 1 serving of chicken cordon bleu?

Chicken cordon bleu is a classic French dish that combines chicken, ham, and cheese. It’s made by rolling chicken breasts stuffed with ham and cheese in breadcrumbs and then pan frying or baking them. While it’s an indulgent and delicious meal, many people wonder about the calorie count of chicken cordon bleu.

Quick Answer

On average, one serving of homemade chicken cordon bleu contains around 330 calories. However, the calorie count can vary widely depending on the ingredients and preparation methods used.

Calories in Chicken Cordon Bleu Components

To understand how many calories are in chicken cordon bleu, it’s helpful to look at the calorie counts of the main components of the dish:

  • Chicken breast (boneless, skinless) – 140 calories per 4 ounces
  • Ham (extra lean) – 40 calories per 2 ounces
  • Swiss cheese – 110 calories per ounce
  • Breadcrumbs – 36 calories per 1/4 cup
  • Butter or oil for frying – approx. 100 calories per tablespoon

The calories can add up quickly depending on the size of the chicken breast, how much ham and cheese is stuffed inside, and how much oil or butter is used to cook it. That’s why calorie counts can vary significantly.

Calories in a Typical Serving

Here is an estimate of the number of calories in a typical homemade serving of chicken cordon bleu:

Ingredient Amount Calories
Chicken breast 4 oz (113g) 140
Ham 2 oz (57g) 80
Swiss cheese 1 oz (28g) 110
Breadcrumbs 1/4 cup 36
Butter 1 tbsp 100
Total 466

For a 6 ounce chicken breast stuffed with 2 ounces each of ham and Swiss cheese, breaded and fried in butter, the total calories comes out to around 466 calories.

However, this doesn’t account for any side dishes or sauces that may be served with the chicken cordon bleu, which would add even more calories.

Calories in Restaurant & Frozen Chicken Cordon Bleu

When dining out or purchasing frozen prepared chicken cordon bleu, the calorie counts can vary greatly depending on the restaurant or brand. Here are some general guidelines:

  • Restaurant chicken cordon bleu – 500-800 calories per serving
  • Frozen prepared chicken cordon bleu – 350-550 calories per serving

These prepared versions tend to be higher in calories because restaurants and brands often use larger chicken breasts, more breading, higher fat cooking methods, and creamy sauces.

For example, here are nutrition facts for some popular prepared chicken cordon bleu options:

Brand Serving Size Calories
Boston Market 1 piece (203g) 610
Bertolli Frozen 1 piece (283g) 530
Banquet Frozen 1 meal (283g) 360

Ways to Reduce Calories in Chicken Cordon Bleu

If you’re looking to lighten up this French favorite, there are several simple ways to reduce the calories in chicken cordon bleu:

Use Leaner Cuts of Chicken

Opt for boneless, skinless chicken breasts to trim calories and fat. Chicken thigh meat with skin and bone would have closer to 200 calories per serving compared to 140 calories for a skinless breast.

Reduce Breadcrumb Coating

The thick layer of breading contributes quite a few calories. Try dipping the stuffed chicken breasts in egg and then breadcrumbs rather than double-dipping to get a lighter breading.

Choose Lower-Fat Cheese

Traditional Swiss cheese has around 110 calories an ounce. Substitute it for part-skim mozzarella or provolone cheese to cut calories by about 20 calories per ounce.

Cook Without Much Added Fat

Baking, grilling or pan frying the chicken in a nonstick skillet with minimal oil will save on calories compared to deep frying. Avoid butter as well.

Serve with Veggies, Not Cream Sauce

Rather than smothering the chicken in a heavy cream sauce, try a squeeze of lemon or serve it with steamed broccoli and other veggies to balance the meal.

Low Calorie Chicken Cordon Bleu Recipe

By making some simple substitutions and tweaks, you can create a lighter chicken cordon bleu recipe at home with around 300 calories per serving:


  • 4 (4 ounce) boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 4 slices lower sodium deli ham
  • 4 slices reduced-fat Swiss cheese
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat panko bread crumbs
  • 2 tbsp paprika
  • 2 large egg whites, lightly beaten
  • 1 tsp olive oil


  1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
  2. Butterfly chicken breasts by slicing horizontally through the thickest part to open up into 2 thinner fillets.
  3. Season chicken with salt, pepper, and paprika.
  4. Place 1 slice ham and 1 slice cheese on each butterflied chicken breast.
  5. Fold chicken over fillings and secure closed with toothpicks.
  6. Dip chicken bundles in egg whites, then coat with panko crumbs.
  7. Heat olive oil in a large ovenproof skillet over medium high heat.
  8. Add chicken bundles and cook for 2-3 minutes on each side until browned.
  9. Transfer skillet to oven and bake 10-12 minutes until chicken is cooked through.
  10. Let rest 5 minutes before serving.

This lighter chicken cordon bleu recipe clocks in at around 300 calories per serving. To make it even healthier, serve it alongside a salad or roasted vegetables.

Nutrition Tips

Chicken cordon bleu makes for a protein-packed main dish. Here are some extra nutrition tips for this meal:

  • Use whole grain breadcrumbs to add fiber.
  • Get vitamins and minerals from side dishes like salads and non-starchy veggies.
  • Choose lean deli ham and reduced-fat cheese to limit saturated fat.
  • Enjoy a serving of whole fruits or lowfat yogurt for dessert.
  • Drink water instead of sugary sodas or juices.

With some smart substitutions and sides, you can enjoy chicken cordon in a healthy, balanced way that satisfies your taste buds and nutrition needs.


Chicken cordon bleu is a high protein dinner option that can range from 350-800 calories depending on ingredients and preparation method. A typical homemade serving made with a 6 ounce chicken breast, 2 ounces each of ham and Swiss cheese, and pan fried in butter has around 466 calories. Opt for leaner cuts of chicken, reduced-fat cheese, minimal breading, and healthier cooking methods to lighten up this French favorite. Serve it with plenty of vegetables and fruits to round out the meal. With some modifications, you can enjoy chicken cordon bleu as part of a healthy diet.