How To Make An Easy Chicken Galantina

Make it easier with these tips.

IMAGE Shutterstock

The chicken galantina or chicken relleno is one of those dishes that instantly impress. This stuffed chicken is sometimes entirely boneless! How's that for impressive? 

What makes it a favorite holiday main course isn't just the impressive nature of the chicken itself. It's a truly flavorful masterpiece. The stuffing is a combination of chicken meat plus as long a list of ingredients. Classic stuffing ingredients include dried fruit such as raisins, chopped nuts such as cashews and pistachios, pickle relish to add sweetness in flavor, chopped ham for extra flavor, and others that will enhance the chicken.   

This is essentially a roast chicken dish, too. This means the chicken is commonly trussed up or even sewed together so the stuffing stays inside the chicken. What makes this different from an ordinary stuffed roast chicken is really the removal of the skeleton. This makes it easy to slice and serve. There are no bones to worry about!  


If you are planning on making the chicken galantina at home for the holidays, here are some tips to help you manage your time and effort: 

Photo by Wikimedia Commons
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1 Get the chicken deboned at the meat shop.  

You have to take advantage of this service at your local meat shop. Butchers are extremely skilled with the knife, and it's their job to prepare the meats that are cut up and prepared for you to use at home. 


You may ask for the chicken to be deboned entirely, including the legs and part of the wings (wing tips are left as is) or just the breast and backbone skeleton can be removed. Either way, you should go home with a whole chicken that's ready to be stuffed.    

Photo by Pixabay/Siwon Lee

2 Use chicken breasts. 

You do not need to be able to serve 10 or more people to make a galantina for the holidays. If there's a reason to celebrate, we say you can make a version of this dish that will feed just a few people without needing the entire bird to do it. 

To do that, use the chicken breast fillets. These are easy to debone and with such a meaty cut, these are easily stuffed with your choice of filling. You can even depart from the usual stuffing ingredients and instead opt for a modern stuffed chicken breast recipe. However, make sure you get chicken breasts with the skin still attached so you can use the skin to wrap around the breast and prevent it from drying out as its cooked.  

Photo by Patrick Martires

3 Use boneless chicken thighs. 

If you're after flavor instead, skip the chicken breast and choose the chicken thighs. The butcher shop now offers boneless chicken thighs and this is a great deal for anyone who has had trouble trying to debone the chicken legs. 

This dark meat is flavorful and is remains moist because of the extra fat it commonly contains. Just like the chicken breast fillets, make sure the skin is still attached to the thigh fillet so you can use that to create a super crispy skin while keeping the chicken moist and flavorful.  

Photo by Bianca Laxamana

4 Use other meaty filings. 

If you love your lumpiang shanghai filling, why not try that meat combination in your galantina? Its different, unconventional, and definitely delicious which is why you choose it. You can even use hack burger patty and meatball recipes, and use any of these as the base of your meaty filling. 

Photo by Riell Santos

5 Tie up the bird. 

The biggest challenge you may have to face is tying up the bird. If you're not familiar with trussing up a bird, see how we easily do it in this chicken galantina recipe video. If you have a bird whose backbone was cut or sliced open to more easily remove the skeleton, you may have to do more than just truss up the bird with kitchen string. You may have to sew the bird together. 

To do this, simply prepare a needle and thread, and sew the backbone of the chicken together before tying the legs and wings together with string. Once you have your bird securely tied, time to make any last-minute preparations before you roast it according to the recipe directions. 

The chicken galantina is truly a magnificent main course to serve on the Christmas buffet table. Let these tips make it an easier job than it has to be, so you do not have to be stressed over the Noche Buena feast. 




Thinking about what to cook next? Join our Facebook group, Yummy Pinoy Cooking Club, to get more recipe ideas, share your own dishes, and find out what the rest of the community are making and eating!

Got your own version of the classic dishes? Pa-share naman! Get your recipe published on by submitting your recipe here

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